View Full Version : For Gonatodes keepers

12-14-2006, 12:31 PM
Are Gonatodes species terrestrial,arboreal or semi-arboreal?
Are they good candidates for a natural vivarium? Should the terrarium be higher or wider? Can they be kept communally? Thanks

Ken Bartenfeld
12-14-2006, 12:44 PM
Not a keeper...but I do know they are semi-aboreal...and are communal.

They are great candiates for a natural vivarium! They are diurnal too and lay single eggs.

12-14-2006, 12:57 PM
It depends on the species, but semi terrestrial/arboreal would be a good descriptor for them in general. They make great subjects for naturalistic vivaria, Id go with wider dimensions with decent height to them personally (however, species like vittatus and albogularis definitely wouldnt be hurt by a taller oriented cage). They do live communally in the wild, however with limited space available in captivity housing singly or in pairs/trios is the way to go. Small groups just tend to get even smaller when the animals lower on the totem pole get stressed and eventually die. Of course, if youre talking a 55 gallon cage or something, im sure you could house alot of them together in a well designed setup.

12-14-2006, 03:25 PM
The 3 species I saw while in Peru live on the first 10-15 feet of medium to large tree trunks and would hide in amongst the crevices when you approached. Small trees were not occupied by any Gonatodes species. Oddly enough, each tree had only one sexed pair of a single species on Gonatodes on it, or occasionally, a single male. No matter where we went, the same thing was noticed.
Based on these observations, I would house them either singly or in pairs (and never multiple species together...we also saw how that ends in Peru and it's not a happy ending :( ) They are very territorial. Also, a vertically oriented enclosure mimicking the base of a tree would suit these geckos very well. Some diagonal and horizontal 'branches' would also be well used for basking.
I've used this method with my Gonatodes here at home and they thrive when kept well fed.
Hope that helps.

12-14-2006, 04:14 PM
Theres definitely alot of variance within the genus, in the wild ceciliae and ocellatus are almost completely terrestrial, rarely being seen more than 3-4 feet off the ground and living in areas which are almost completely dark during the day. Vittatus is often seen up to 10-15 feet up, on walls, rocks, trees etc, in extremely high population densities, same with albogularis. Interestingly, humeralis (from trinidad at least) were rarely seen directly on the ground, or more than 5 feet above it, theyve definitely specialized for their niche.. I wonder did you notice hasemani (if memory serves they occur in peru) in the same kind of niche? Id been assuming species like concinattus would be more ocellatus-like in their behavior simply due to the similarities in physical characteristics but it sounds as though they tend to be more vittatus like unless Im reading too much into what youve said? It seems from what you sawthat t a good portion of the genus may prefer "old growth" to new, as all the species I obtained last year were found only in highly overgrown "old growth" forests.

Any specific species you need information on Bushmaster? As you can see its hard to answer questions in general on the entire genus, when they range from ceciliae.. which avoids light, prefers high humidity, doesnt have much of an arboreal side, and will stress over 84 degrees, to vittatus, which is highly arboreal, less humidity dependant, and regularly basks on rock walls in the wild that approach or exceed 105 degrees.

Ken Bartenfeld
12-14-2006, 04:33 PM
Great information. I'd like some Gonatodes.