The Top Gecko Species Every Enthusiast Should Know
By | Published on 2023-03-30
Geckos are fascinating creatures that have captured the hearts and minds of pet enthusiasts everywhere. With their unique appearance, playful personalities, and impressive adaptability, it's no wonder why so many people are drawn to these captivating reptiles. But with over 1,500 known species of geckos in the world, it can be tough to know where to start. So whether you're a seasoned gecko enthusiast or just getting started, we've compiled a list of the top gecko species every enthusiast should know. From colorful chameleons to stunning leopard geckos, let's take a closer look at these incredible creatures and discover what makes them so special.
Leopard Geckos: Colorful, Hardy Pets for Beginners
Leopard geckos are one of the most popular species of geckos kept as pets, and for good reason. They are colorful, hardy, and easy to care for, making them a great choice for beginners. These geckos can be found in a variety of colors and patterns, with yellow, orange, and red being the most common. They are also known for their distinctive spots and stripes. One of the reasons leopard geckos are easy to care for is that they are relatively low-maintenance. They do not require as much space as some other lizard species and can be kept in a small enclosure without feeling cramped. They are also nocturnal, so they do not need as much natural light as some other reptiles. In terms of diet, leopard geckos are insectivores, which means they eat primarily insects. Crickets and mealworms are good options, but they can also be fed wax worms or butterworms as an occasional treat. Leopard geckos can also be dusted with a vitamin supplement to ensure they get all the nutrients they need. Overall, leopard geckos are a great choice for beginners looking for a colorful and low-maintenance pet.
Crested Geckos: Unique, Playful and Low Maintenance
Crested Geckos are another popular breed among gecko enthusiasts. These unique creatures are interactive, playful, and incredibly low maintenance, making them great pets for those who are new to the world of geckos. One of the most interesting characteristics of Crested Geckos is their ability to climb. Their toes have small, sticky pads that allow them to scale walls and other vertical surfaces with ease. In addition to being acrobatic climbers, Crested Geckos are also visually striking. Their broad heads and large eyes give them a distinct appearance, while their colorful skin patterns and soft bumps create an almost prehistoric look. They come in a variety of colors too, including yellow, orange, and red, making them a captivating addition to any gecko collection. Crested Geckos' low-maintenance needs make them ideal pets for busy people or those who don't want to spend too much time caring for their animals. Unlike other gecko species that require specialized lighting and heating, Crested Geckos do well in room temperature conditions and do not need any special lighting systems. With a diet consisting of just fruit paste and insects, feeding them is also easy. Overall, Crested Geckos not only offer a unique addition to your pet collection but also provide an effortless and enjoyable opportunity to engage with these fascinating creatures.
Gargoyle Geckos: Docile and Easy to Care for
If you're looking for a unique and interesting gecko, you might want to consider the gargoyle gecko. These geckos are quickly becoming popular among reptile enthusiasts, and for good reason. They are docile, easy to care for, and incredibly fascinating creatures. One of the most notable features of gargoyle geckos is their appearance. They have a unique bumpy texture on their skin, giving them a striking and almost prehistoric look. Their coloration is also quite varied, with many different patterns and shades available. Despite their unusual appearance, these geckos are friendly and social creatures that make great pets for reptile lovers. In addition to their unique appearance, gargoyle geckos are also incredibly easy to care for. They require a relatively simple setup, and can be kept in a small terrarium or even a large aquarium. Gargoyle geckos are also quite hardy, making them a great choice for beginners who may be nervous about caring for a more delicate species. Overall, if you're looking for a captivating and low-maintenance gecko, the gargoyle gecko is a great option to consider.
African Fat-Tailed Geckos: Friendly and Calm
African Fat-Tailed Geckos are one of the most popular pet geckos in the world and are known for their calm and affectionate temperament. They're native to West Africa, and their unique name is derived from the shape of their tails which resemble that of a fat worm. These geckos are usually a mix of brown, beige, and gray in color, and they have a pattern of darker blotches on their skin, which can vary in intensity or size depending on their environment. One of the main reasons why African Fat-Tailed Geckos make great pets is their friendly nature. They are not afraid to be handled by their owners, and they even show affection towards them from time to time. With gentle handling, these geckos can become incredibly tame, and they are unlikely to bite or scratch their owners. This friendly disposition makes African Fat-Tailed Geckos an excellent option for families with young children or novice reptile keepers who may feel uneasy around more aggressive species. Another great aspect of African Fat-Tailed Geckos is their adaptability. They are comfortable living in small spaces and can thrive in a range of ambient temperatures. In fact, unlike other gecko species, they don't require supplemental heat sources for warmth and can survive in ambient temperatures of 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Moreover, they're not picky eaters and will feed on a range of insects, making a varied diet easy to achieve. Overall, these docile and easy-to-care-for geckos make a fantastic addition to any pet lover's home.
Tokay Geckos: Stunning But Not For Everyone
Tokay geckos are undoubtedly one of the most strikingly beautiful species out there, with their vivid blue and orange-speckled skin making them stand out among the rest. However, they are not for everyone. Unlike the previous species we have discussed, Tokay geckos are not particularly beginner-friendly and require a more experienced owner to care for them properly. One of the reasons for this is that they have an aggressive and territorial temperament and are known to bite if they feel threatened. Their vocalization, a distinctive 'tokay' call, is also very loud and can be a nuisance for those living in close proximity. They require a larger enclosure with plenty of places to hide, climb, and bask. Moreover, Tokay geckos are primarily insectivorous, so they require a diet consisting of a variety of live insects, such as crickets, mealworms, and waxworms. Nonetheless, for those willing to put in the effort, Tokay geckos can make excellent pets. They have a unique personality and an impressive lifespan of up to 20 years in captivity. Their beauty, coupled with their interesting behaviours, make them a favourite among advanced enthusiasts. As long as they are cared for properly, Tokay geckos can thrive in captivity and become a fascinating addition to your animal collection.
Day Geckos: Active and Bright Colored
Day Geckos are a unique species that are known for their bright, vibrant colors. These active and playful lizards are a great choice for any gecko enthusiast looking for a visually stunning pet to add to their collection. Day Geckos are known for being fast and agile, making them a fascinating species to observe as they scamper about their habitat. One of the best things about Day Geckos is their striking appearance. These geckos are typically bright green in color, with bold markings and patterns that vary from species to species. Some of the most popular Day Geckos are the Gold Dust Day Gecko, the Madagascar Giant Day Gecko, and the Electric Blue Day Gecko. Regardless of the species, Day Geckos are sure to add some vibrancy and excitement to any collection. If you're considering adding a Day Gecko to your collection, be prepared to provide them with ample space and stimulation. These active lizards need plenty of room to move around and explore, along with a variety of climbing structures and hiding places. With the right setup, Day Geckos can thrive in captivity and provide their owners with years of enjoyment.
Mourning Geckos: Sociable and Parthenogenic
Mourning geckos are unique in the sense that they are completely parthenogenic. They are also known as the 'little fireballs' due to their quick and energetic movements. The Mourning Gecko originates from Madagascar, and make excellent pets for enthusiasts due to their sociable nature, ease of care, and ability to reproduce without the need for a mate. These geckos are small in size, with adults growing up to only 3-4 inches long. They are social creatures that thrive in groups, and always enjoy having other geckos to interact with. They are also known for being highly vocal, and use their distinct chirping sounds to communicate with other geckos. This makes watching them even more entertaining and enjoyable. Mourning geckos can be kept in a vivarium with a range of plants and hiding spots. They are not picky eaters and can be fed on a diet of insects such as crickets, mealworms, and fruit flies. Due to their ability to reproduce asexually, they are often recommended as one of the best choices for beginners who want to start breeding their own geckos. Overall, these sociable geckos are a fantastic addition to any gecko enthusiast's collection.
Monkey Tailed Skinks: Special Tail and Live Births
Monkey Tailed Skinks are among the most fascinating species of lizards that one can own as pets. These interesting creatures are native to Papua New Guinea and utilize their unique prehensile tails for balance and support while exploring their environment. They usually grow to an average length of 12-18 inches and have a lifespan of up to 20 years in captivity. What sets Monkey Tailed Skinks apart from other gecko species is their ability to give birth to live young, rather than laying eggs. This unique reproductive feature is known as ovoviviparity. This means that once the female skink gets pregnant, the fertilized eggs develop inside her body until they hatch and are subsequently born as live babies. Because of this, Monkey Tail Skinks are sometimes referred to as "viviparous" lizards as opposed to "oviparous" lizards that lay eggs. Overall, Monkey Tailed Skinks make for an awesome pet and one of the most interesting Gecko species for any reptile enthusiast to own. Apart from their special tail functions and fascinating reproductive system, these skinks are generally hardy and easy to care for like other gecko species.
In conclusion, there are countless species of geckos out there, each with their own unique characteristics and quirks. However, the top gecko species discussed in this article are a great place to start for any enthusiast looking to expand their knowledge and appreciation for these fascinating creatures. From the iconic leopard gecko to the charming satanic leaf-tailed gecko, each of these geckos offers something special to their keepers. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced gecko enthusiast, the top gecko species mentioned in this article are definitely worth considering when looking for your next reptilian pet.