Crested geckos are fascinating creatures that have become popular pets for reptile enthusiasts. Among the various color variations of this species, one of the most striking is the black crested gecko. With their unique dark coloration, these geckos stand out from the crowd.
As pets, black crested geckos require specific care to ensure their health and well-being. They are arboreal creatures, meaning they spend most of their time in trees. Therefore, a suitable enclosure should mimic their natural habitat, with plenty of branches, foliage, and vertical space for climbing. Additionally, a temperature gradient should be maintained, with a warmer area around 75-80°F (24-27°C) during the day and a cooler area around 70-75°F (21-24°C) at night.
Housing and Care for Black Crested Geckos
The size of the enclosure depends on the age and number of geckos you plan to house. For a single adult gecko, a 20-gallon terrarium is usually sufficient. However, if you plan to house multiple geckos together, a larger enclosure, such as a 30 or 40-gallon tank, would be more appropriate to accommodate their needs.
Choosing the right substrate is crucial for the health and well-being of your Black Crested Geckos. A suitable substrate should be both safe and provide humidity for the geckos.
Temperature and Humidity
Black Crested Geckos require a warm and humid environment to thrive. The temperature inside the enclosure should be maintained between 72-78°F (22-25°C) during the day and can be slightly cooler at night.
Humidity levels should be kept around 50-70% to replicate the geckos’ natural habitat. To achieve the required humidity, mist the enclosure with water daily, especially in the evening. Additionally, placing a shallow water dish in the enclosure can help maintain humidity levels.
Lighting and UVB
Black Crested Geckos are primarily nocturnal, so they do not require intense lighting like diurnal reptiles. However, providing a light cycle of 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness can help regulate their internal clock.
While Black Crested Geckos do not require UVB lighting, providing a low-intensity UVB bulb can still be beneficial for their overall health. It can assist in calcium metabolism and prevent metabolic bone disease.
Decoration and Enrichment
Creating a natural and engaging environment is important for Black Crested Geckos. Decorate the enclosure with branches, plants, and hides to offer hiding spots and climbing opportunities. Ensure that the branches are securely fastened to prevent accidents and injuries.
Adding live plants, such as pothos or ferns, not only provides a visually appealing enclosure but also helps maintain humidity levels and improves air quality.
Feeding and Water
Always provide fresh water in a shallow dish. Ensure the water is changed regularly to maintain cleanliness.
By following the guidelines outlined above, you can provide a suitable and stimulating environment for your Black Crested Geckos. Remember to monitor their behavior and make adjustments to their care as needed to ensure their well-being and happiness.
Feeding and Diet for Black Crested Geckos
Insects: Insects should make up a significant portion of a black crested gecko’s diet. They enjoy a variety of insects such as crickets, dubia roaches, phoenix worms, and waxworms. These insects should be appropriately sized for their consumption and dusted with calcium and vitamin D3 supplements.
Fruits: Fruits play an important role in a black crested gecko’s diet. They provide essential nutrients and hydration. Some of the recommended fruits for crested geckos include mashed or pureed bananas, apricots, peaches, pears, and figs. You can also offer small pieces of fresh fruit such as papaya, mango, or watermelon. Make sure to remove any uneaten fruit after 24 hours to prevent it from spoiling.
Supplements: It’s crucial to provide your black crested gecko with proper supplements to ensure they receive all the necessary vitamins and minerals. Calcium and vitamin D3 supplements should be dusted on their food at least once or twice a week. This will help maintain strong bones and prevent metabolic bone disease.
Water: Fresh and clean water should always be available for your black crested gecko. Use a shallow dish or a water bottle with a misting system to provide hydration. Make sure to change the water regularly to keep it clean and prevent bacterial growth.
Overall, a well-balanced diet consisting of a variety of insects, fruits, and supplements is essential for the health and well-being of black crested geckos. Providing them with proper nutrition and hydration will ensure they thrive in captivity.
Black Crested Gecko Morphs and Variations
The black crested gecko is a popular variation of the crested gecko species, known for its striking black coloration. While all crested geckos have a certain level of variation in their appearance, the black morph is particularly sought after by reptile enthusiasts.
In addition to the black and orange/white coloration, black crested geckos also come in various other color variations. One common variation is the “brindle” morph, which features a swirled pattern of black and orange/white spots. Another variation is the “tri-color” morph, which has three distinct colors on its body, such as black, orange, and white or black, yellow, and white.
The black crested gecko morph can also exhibit different patterns. Some individuals may have a solid black body, while others may have a striped or banded pattern. The intensity and coverage of the black color can also vary between individuals, resulting in a range of appearances within the morph.
Black crested geckos are highly sought after by reptile enthusiasts for their unique and striking appearance. Their black coloration, combined with their vibrant orange or white spots and various patterns, make them an attractive addition to any reptile collection.
The black crested gecko morph offers a visually stunning variation of the popular crested gecko species. With its dark black coloration, vibrant spots, and unique patterns, this gecko morph has become highly sought after in the reptile community. Breeders continue to work towards producing individuals with the most intense and striking black coloration, as well as distinct variations in patterns and color combinations. If you’re looking to add a visually striking gecko to your collection, the black crested gecko morph should definitely be considered.
Black Crested Geckos: Common Health Issues and Care Tips
One common health issue in black crested geckos is shedding problems. These geckos shed their skin regularly, and if the shed is not complete, it can lead to problems such as retained shed or stuck shed. To prevent this, owners should provide a moist hide for their geckos during shedding. This can be created by placing a damp paper towel or moss inside a hide box.
Metabolic bone disease (MBD) is another concern for black crested geckos. MBD occurs when the gecko’s diet lacks proper calcium and vitamin D3. This can result in weak bones and deformities. To prevent MBD, owners should provide a diet rich in calcium, such as calcium dusted insects, and ensure that the gecko’s enclosure has proper UVB lighting.
Proper care and maintenance are key to keeping black crested geckos healthy. Regularly cleaning and disinfecting their enclosure, providing a varied and nutritious diet, and ensuring proper temperature and humidity levels are all essential for their well-being. Additionally, owners should handle their geckos gently and avoid any rough or stressful handling.