As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
The common leopard gecko is one of the most popular lizards among beginners. Their bright hues and amiable dispositions make them ideal pets.
What exactly should you feed a leopard gecko? There are a lot of strange ideas about how to feed them. But, first and foremost, what do Leopard Geckos eat and how much should you feed them? It’s critical to understand how to provide a balanced diet and the finest foods to offer. In the wild, leopard geckos are predators that consume insects and other small creatures.
Not just do you need gut-loaded insects in your lizard’s diet, but you also require them straight from the container to your mouth. This gives the insects complete nutrition to keep their lizard happy and healthy. This post will go over all you need to know about feeding leopard geckos.
Essentially, baby leopard geckos can be considered voracious predators that will consume anything they are able to hunt down. These lizards consume beetles, crickets, spiders, and scorpions in the wild. They have been known to prey on tiny snakes, rats, and other sorts of lizards.
Many lizards will attempt to consume any creature smaller than themselves. There have been reports of ravenous geckos eating hatchlings, but it’s uncommon.
Leopard geckos are more inclined than other gecko species to hunt live prey. Instead of waiting for their dinner to pass by, leopard geckos will search for and pursue them. They track insects sightlessly and stalk them methodically. Deer tails are often wagged or vibrated when hunting, but just before striking. This helps to frighten their prey into action.
When they’re ready to feed, Leopard Geckos vibrate their food rapidly, stunning and possibly killing it. Prey is typically ignored after death if it’s not eaten, but a Gecko may lick it to assess its nutritional value.
This lizard hunting can be quite fascinating. They may be tiny, but they are intense and impactful hunters with eyesight that is far more accurate compared to most creatures. Additionally, they also have a preternatural sense of smell. They also have sharp jaws with 100 small, pointed teeth that can be replaced every three to four months.
Leopard geckos will eat as often as they can, given their high activity levels and lack of prey. Their high energy levels and a lack of food cause wild animals to become overweight or obese rarely. In fact, they are normally underweight. Wild individuals weigh around 27 grams on average, while bigger pets may weigh up to 90 grams.
Because of their lack of activity, too much food makes leopard geckos prone to gaining weight. It is critical to feed your gecko on a timetable and check for weight increases in order to avoid obesity.
Because they are very small, baby leopard geckos should grow more quickly and eat more often than adults. Adult leopard gecko species that are over two years old should no longer put on weight, but their food size can be greater.
A leopard gecko’s diet should be well-balanced. Crawling insects, including crickets, mealworms, cockroaches, hornworms, and waxworms are all nutritious and safe options for a leopard gecko to consume. Nutrition isn’t the only consideration when it comes to food selection.
House crickets are the most popular leopard gecko food since they are available in large quantities at pet shops. These insects, on the other hand, have a distinct odor and may be noisy. Dubia roaches and mealworms are preferred alternatives because they do not make a mess.
Waxworms are also available and fed to leopard geckos. They’re high in fat and low in protein, so they’re not suitable for your leopard gecko’s regular diet.
These lizards, in their natural habitat, consume a variety of animals. You should attempt to replicate this animal’s natural diet pattern. You’ll also want to keep an eye on the nutritional value of the different insects you’re feeding them.
Your pet is an insectivore, no matter what species of gecko you have. In the wild, these reptiles will consume almost any bug they can find, with their food mostly depending on what insects live in the same region as your gecko’s natural habitat. Crickets, moths, spiders, all sorts of worms, and grasshoppers are among their favorite foods. They will eat small rodents if insects are unavailable.
In captivity, your gecko will most likely eat crickets exclusively. In addition to mealworms and super worms, you can offer him a variety of other insects. Crickets are readily available at local pet stores and are frequently inexpensive.
Mealworms and super worms are readily available, and you may buy them frozen-dried from online pet supply stores. They’re also quite noisy and stinky, so raise them in the garage or basement to maintain large stock. Mealworms and super worms are simple to acquire, and you can usually get these freeze-dried from any online pet shop.
Waxworms are yet another popular treat that your gecko will appreciate, although it is high in fat and should be eaten rarely.
The size of the food you feed your gecko is crucial. To prevent your gecko’s throat from becoming blocked, most owners recommend feeding it no larger than the width of its mouth. Larger geckos may consume pinky mice to increase their calcium intake.
To prevent Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD), which is a severe condition that occurs when your captive reptile does not get adequate calcium, you’ll need to provide him or her with a calcium supplement.
Calcium is crucial for the formation and maintenance of strong bones. It causes delicate, brittle bones that may shatter at any time. The soft bones can limit movement and give the body a flattened appearance. To guarantee that your pet has all it requires to create and preserve strong bones, dust it with a calcium supplement. If you’re using UV light in your habitat, the calcium supplement is sufficient; but if there isn’t any UVB lighting, we recommend calcium and vitamin D3 supplements.
Leopard geckos are voracious appetite-slaves that have a strong metabolism. They require to eat more often than adults, preferably once per day, as a result of their quick development and growth.
Adult geckos are less hesitant than baby geckos to take food from their hand or tongs. It’s best to feed them in a tiny dish. The prey may move around and capture their attention while being fed utilizing a small dish.
In general, baby leopard geckos should be fed as many tiny crickets or roaches as they can consume in 10 minutes. Any remaining food should be removed after 10 minutes. It is safe and beneficial for young geckos to eat every day, which helps to speed up their development.
Every day, feed your baby leopard geckos. During the first six months of their lives, they develop rapidly. You only have to feed them once every two days after their first year is up.
To calculate how many insects to feed your cricket, measure its length in inches. To give two insects per meal for each inch of their length, use this as a guide. It’s best to do it at night because they’re most active then.
You must also keep in mind that after they hatch, they will shed every 5 to 7 days for the first month. They will then shed at least once every 1 to 2 weeks until they reach maturity.
Because your leopard gecko’s hues will begin to look drab, you can anticipate that they will shed. The skin then separates and becomes white after this. They won’t squander the nutrients in their skin and will consume them once they’ve shed.
When it comes to taming and handling your leopard gecko, you should wait at least two weeks before doing so. They must first get used to their new surroundings.
Wait until your gecko baby starts to eat before handling them. In stages, begin the initial care. Allow them to get used to you by putting your hand in their tank at night but not attempting to touch them. Work up to allowing them on your hands one step at a time.
Geckos are indigenous to warmer climates worldwide. Unlike other lizards, geckos make a variety of different noises, including high-pitched wails that sound similar to those made by dogs or ducks.
Many species of geckos can use these toe pads to climb up smooth surfaces, including vertical windows of glass, and to walk upside down on ceilings thanks to their bristles. Natural predators include other gecko species, as well as snakes, birds of prey, and domestic cats. Predation by a variety of flesh-eating animals is a significant problem for geckos across the world.
Cats and dogs will get rid of geckos. Individual house cats will play with or hunt geckos that turn up in or near the home. A cat’s teeth or claws can cause puncture wounds to a gecko, which will eventually kill it owing to the injury or infection. Dogs may also chase, play with, or hunt geckos, and while they are not as skilled at catching and killing geckos as cats are, they are nevertheless capable of catching and killing one.
Geckos are preyed upon by a variety of predators, including small, quick-footed meat-eaters like weasels, ferrets, stoats. Unusual predators such as rats and hedgehogs will also eat geckos, as will rats and possums.
The larger geckos are most susceptible to predation because they spend the majority of their time hunting on the ground and are active at night, placing all large geckos in danger. Even modest tree-dwelling geckos are vulnerable if they are captured outside of their hiding places. Geckos are preyed upon by a variety of animals, including owls, reptiles such as snakes and monitors, and rodents.
There are several myths about geckos. Although these tiny lizards consume insects and are useful around the house, many homeowners try to get rid of them. Some people still believe that geckos spurt poison or leave a toxic trail when they walk across floors. People will spray geckos with pesticides, capture them, or crush them with various objects in homes. Mothballs are commonly used by homeowners to expel geckos from cracks around the property. Geckos are hunted in Vietnam for traditional medicine.
Tail loss is the most well-known defense mechanism of geckos. When a gecko’s tail is grabbed, the tail detaches and continues to flee on its own. This delays the predator long enough for the gecko to escape. The tail, on the other hand, is completely unharmed when it is lost. Aside from a few insignificant blood losses, the tail regenerates itself and may be utilized as a weapon and an escape route again if required.
At will, some geckos may change colors to match their surroundings. This helps them to blend in with their environment and become almost unnoticeable to predators by allowing them to adapt to color changes on demand. The satanic leaf-tailed gecko, which is found in Madagascar’s forests, may alter from orange to green to brown to yellow depending on the colors of the surrounding forest.
Geckos have exceptional hearing, eyesight, and smell. These senses are extremely significant while hunting prey but also when warning geckos of a predator’s presence. When a predator is discovered, each gecko behaves differently. Some may run away at high speeds, while others might become motionless and try to blend in hopes that they aren’t detected. This is a passive defensive strategy.
Some geckos bite. Some are timid and prefer to keep away from humans and animals as much as possible. Other geckos will bite if they sense that another animal or human hand is too close, even if you didn’t intend to injure them. Tokay geckos, for example, bite without any warning. Leopard geckos, on the other hand, are gentle and docile and far less prone to bite in order to protect themselves.
Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc, or its affiliates.