Crested Gecko Enclosure Guide

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Table of Contents

Enclosure Requirements

Crested Geckos are an arboreal species, meaning they primarily dwell in tree canopies. They are also nocturnal so they primarily only come out at night to hunt. Tall enclosures with lots of branches and foliage are the best types for this species to climb around in and hide. This is essential because they can get stressed if they feel too exposed.

An 18 x 18 x 24 enclosure is typically the best size for an adult Crested Gecko. Exo Terra makes a good one that you can buy here on Amazon*.

If you are an experienced reptile keeper with good husbandry skills, you can create a bioactive terrarium with live plants. Just make sure to check to see if the plants you are planning on using are toxic to your reptile. I personally recommend The Bio Dude* (If you buy your supplies through this link, you will get a $10 off coupon from me!) or New England Herpetoculture.

Housing

Baby geckos should generally be housed in smaller enclosures to make sure they can locate their food. You can increase their enclosure size as they get bigger. If you are bringing a brand new Crested Gecko home, please first read my post on the 3 Most Common Questions for New Crested Gecko Owners.

You should never house multiple adult crested geckos in the same enclosure unless you are an experienced breeder. Even then, a lot of people don’t permanently house their females with their males 100% of the time as this can cause a lot of stress on the females. Babies/hatchlings are typically okay to be housed together as long as there is sufficient space. NEVER house two adult males together as they can try to kill each other.

Lighting and Temperature

Because Crested Gecko’s are nocturnal, they do not require a UVB light as long as their food source contains D3, however providing a small amount of UVB lighting can still be valuable to their health. For more information on feeding your crested gecko, see my Feeding Requirements post.

Crested Gecko’s should be kept at 75-80 Degrees Fahrenheit during the day, with night temperatures dropping to the low 70’s as long as there aren’t drastic changes in temperature. No light is needed at night as they have excellent night vision. If the temperatures are dropping below the low 70’s, you can use a small wattage ceramic bulb as long as there is a temperature gradient in the tank so if the gecko gets too hot or cold; it can move around the cage as it sees fit. You should ALWAYS use a thermostat control so it doesn’t get too hot and check different spots in the tank with a temperature gun.

What We Use

For an inexpensive option, you can also use Zoo Med Labs Digital Thermometer Humidity Gauge*. However, it does have two separate probes for the temperature and humidity.

Humidity Requirements

You should spray your geckos enclosure at night (mine usually wakes up around 8pm) and it should reach 90-100% humidity right after spraying and then you should let it dry out during the day to about 50% humidity. It is very important to let their tank dry out to about 50% humidity during the day as too much humidity can actually cause stuck shed and even skin rot/fungal infections.

If you live in a dry climate you can do some light misting in the morning so it doesn’t get too dry for your gecko.

Substrate

Okay, so I am going to talk about a very controversial topic in the reptile community. Substrate. First, just let me start off by saying this is my own personal opinion. You should always do your own research and talk to your Exotic Vet when making decisions about your animals.

If you have a new Crested Gecko, please first read my post on what to do
3 Most Common Questions for New Crested Gecko Owners.

I use a Fir & Sphagnum Peat Moss Mix for my 1 year old Crested Gecko, Ganon. I have him in an 18 x 18 x 18 enclosure with lots of foliage and I find that this substrate works great for keeping the humidity at the right levels at night and does good drying out during the day.

The reason I use loose substrate in my geckos cage is because I feed him his crickets with tongs or outside of his cage where he can’t accidentally lunge for a cricket and get a mouth full of substrate. If you choose to use loose substrate and notice that your gecko is intentionally ingesting it, CALL YOUR EXOTIC VET ASAP. This is a sign of a serious calcium deficiency which can lead to Metabolic Bone Disease in addition to causing impaction.


Impaction Disclaimer: Impaction is caused by an animal accidentally (or sometimes intentionally) ingesting a foreign substance such as substrate which then can cause a blockage in their intestines.  Impaction can be FATAL! ANY type of loose substrate can cause impaction. If you plan to put loose crickets or feeder insects in your gecko’s cage and let them hunt, I personally would not recommend using a loose substrate. Instead, I would use something like damp paper towels or newspaper.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Make sure to spot clean your gecko’s cage every day and mist the paper towels at night to keep the humidity levels up. Change the paper towels at least once a week and clean the décor. Change the substrate and clean the entire tank at least once a month.s


*This site contains affiliate links to products. We may receive a commission for purchases made through these links at no additional cost to you. We do not recommend any products that we have not or would not use personally.

4 thoughts on “Crested Gecko Enclosure Guide

  1. I just bought 2 crested geckos that are barely an inch long from snout to base of tail.
    They are in an 18x18x24 with coconut sheddings. I am very reluctant to keep this in their housing for 1 of them burrows under and lays on the glass which I do not feel okay with… should I try a moss carpet that is made for tank ground coverage?

    1. Hi,

      With them being so small, I would start out using moist paper towels as their substrate. This will help monitor any health issues until they get bigger as well as help with the burrowing issue. Also, I would recommend getting them separate tanks since the one that is burrowing could be feeling threatened by the other one and trying to hide. I would also make sure your temps and humidity are good and that there is plenty of foliage in their tank which could be another reason they are burrowing in their substrate.

      I hope this helps!

      Shelby with New Hope Herp

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