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  1. #1
    Satori23 is offline Newbie
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    Default Juvenille Crested Setup - Gaining weight?


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    I have a crested gecko, Geddy, I purchased around the first of December last year, the breeders stated he was between 2 & 3 months old; so I am estimating his age now between 5 & 6 months. The reason for this post is that I feel he is not really gaining much weight. He eats & there is regular fecal matter in the enclosure. When I got him he was about 4 to 5 grams and when I put him on a scale he still weighs 5 grams. I am posting pictures of the setup just so you all can see the exact conditions he is in. This is my first Crestie so I'm not 100% familiar with their growth rate but I feel within 4 months I should have seen some noticeable change in size & weight. Any help & suggestions are welcome & thank you in advance.

    The enclosure is a critter keeper... one of the larger ones.







    Substrate paper towel.




    A rubbermaid container with warm water soaked paper towels for a humid hide.





    Simple log for hiding.. he loves it.



    This is the type of CGD I use.



    Here is the food dish I use.. shown with my hand for a size reference.


    This is the amount of powder I put in.



    Again with a toothpick for size reference.




    After water added this is what I end up with. (Looks right to me)




    Here is the basic layout with humid hide, food dishes & log.




    Big leaf that he enjoys to lay on and gives a second level to the enclosure.




    This is a vine that I attach to the side to give him some vertical space and stretch those little arboreal arms of his.


    Here is the enclosure with the vine in it.





    With leafs and vine.





    Rear view.







    And these are the general conditions he is kept under.




    He has a heat lamp for the day and night but I usually keep the night one off because it keeps the temp closer to 80F and I figured that was a little too high for the evening hours.


    Let me know if I am knocking this out of the park or if I need some altering.

    I'm just confused as to why the little guy isn't gaining a whole lot of weight.

    The food is changed every 2 days along with the water and humid hide.

    Any help/advice/complaints are more than welcome!

    Thanks,
    Satori & Geddy


  2. #2
    jnk144's Avatar
    jnk144 is offline Newbie
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    Default RE: Juvenile Not Gaining Weight

    The heat lamp generally isn't necessary if the temperature of your house is less than 70-72 degrees F. He may be getting heat stress.

    Also since the food is under the heat lamp too, it may be decaying/producing mold more quickly than it would without the added heat. (The heat lamp could also be 'baking' the fecal matter, making it more pungent, which may stress him too).

    I recently acquired two juvenile cresteds myself, and I keep each in a critter keeper - pretty much the same set up - except I do not have a heat lamp for either, the temperature is around 72 during the day and it doesn't drop below 70 at night.

    I also offer mine mashed fresh peach - you could also do apricots or pears.

    I would reccomend changing the food more often. I check on my food and water bowls at night, and then check the water bowl again in the morning before I leave for work. I change the fruit bowl and the CGD every evening. (I also offer them a small cricket or two every other week).

    Also, your hydrometer reads 43% - that is too low. I don't think it is supposed to go below 50%.

    I hope that helps. Best of luck with your little friend!
    Last edited by jnk144; 03-10-2011 at 01:39 PM.
    Jenn
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    0.1.0 Hemitheconyx caudicinctus, Marv
    1.0.0 Eublepharus macularius, Muscles
    0.2.0 Rhacodactylus ciliatus, Reba and Maybe
    1.0.0 Ambystoma maculatum, Lou

  3. #3
    Satori23 is offline Newbie
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    Default

    Well it's hard to keep the humidity up in the critter keeper that's why I gave him the humid hide. He goes nuts for crickets but I've aimed against giving him them so that he would eat the CGD and get the correct nutrients. I'm afraid if he gets used to crickets then he wont eat the CGD.

    Any advice on how to keep the humidity up?



    Also does he look too small for his age?
    Last edited by Satori23; 03-10-2011 at 01:48 PM. Reason: More info.

  4. #4
    jnk144's Avatar
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    Default RE: Juvenile Weight Gain

    Do you live in a very arid climate?

    The other thing that can alter the habitat is where you keep you pets in your house.

    For example, I live in a brick house (built in the 19th century, so there's no insulation). The room most south in my house is freezing in the winter and hot as heck in the summer - so no one stay in there. My reptile room is in the northeast corner of the house, where there are more layers of brick, etc. acting as insulation in a way, so it stays about 72 in the winter during the days and 75 degrees in the summer during the day (I use a window AC unit in the summer months).

    I am also able to keep the reptile room relatively humid in general. (That particular room has four tanks, two of which contain live plants, which help to keep the humidity higher). (The windows are also sealed, so no air from outside gets in through cracks, which would def lower the temp and humidity).

    If you live in a low himidty location, and the daily misting only brings the humidity up to 40-50%, your best bet may be to purchase a humidifier to keep in the room where you have your reptile(s). OR, instead of buying a machine, you could get some cheap, low maintenance house plants to help with the humidity level.
    Jenn
    -----
    0.1.0 Hemitheconyx caudicinctus, Marv
    1.0.0 Eublepharus macularius, Muscles
    0.2.0 Rhacodactylus ciliatus, Reba and Maybe
    1.0.0 Ambystoma maculatum, Lou

  5. #5
    Satori23 is offline Newbie
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    I try not to mist to much because it seems to stress him out. I have a humidifier so maybe I can focus on trying to work with his humidity. I've read it should drop at one point in the day then be brought back up. Also what is your take on his weight? He just doesn't seem to be getting any bigger.

  6. #6
    jnk144's Avatar
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    Default RE: Juvenile Weight Gain/Diet

    If you feed a cricket or two to them once every couple of weeks or a month, he will not get to a point where he only will eat crickets.

    These animals original from islands northeast of Austrialia, where they live off mostly nectar and soft fruits, but they are oppotunistic as well, and will eat crickets.

    However, it is okay to be wary of feeding crickets to a juvenile, - you have to make sure they are the appropriate size, like 1/4". Also, they would have to be gut-loaded at least 24 hours prior to the feeding and dusted with calcium and D3 powder to offset the Phosphorous level in their bodies. (Sounds like a lot of trouble to go through for a few measley crickets, and if you do not want to do so, that is perfectly fine.) The Rapashy food has successfuly been used for several generations of cresteds, without insects. The Rapashy diet meets 100% of their needs.
    Jenn
    -----
    0.1.0 Hemitheconyx caudicinctus, Marv
    1.0.0 Eublepharus macularius, Muscles
    0.2.0 Rhacodactylus ciliatus, Reba and Maybe
    1.0.0 Ambystoma maculatum, Lou

  7. #7
    Satori23 is offline Newbie
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    Thanks for the advice. Does he seem the appropriate size for a 5 - 6 month old?

  8. #8
    jnk144's Avatar
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    Default RE: Juvenile Size

    As for your question about the size, I think that question is best answered by someone with more experience. Perhaps someone from GU who breeds cresteds could answer.

    Are you 100% of his age when you first got him?

    Your original post says the breeder estimated 2-3 months old - I would think a breeder should know more about his juveniles than that. If you can, try and pin down a more precise hatch date. Do you have the breeder's contact information?

    The crested gecko breeders who post on GU can provide more information. It may be useful for you to have a sort of growth chart for Geddy - for example, hatchlings usually measure nose to tail about 3 inches, according to a book I have about them.

    My five month (and two week old) old is a little over five inches long, if that helps.
    Last edited by jnk144; 03-10-2011 at 02:14 PM.
    Jenn
    -----
    0.1.0 Hemitheconyx caudicinctus, Marv
    1.0.0 Eublepharus macularius, Muscles
    0.2.0 Rhacodactylus ciliatus, Reba and Maybe
    1.0.0 Ambystoma maculatum, Lou

  9. #9
    Satori23 is offline Newbie
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    Well the breeder was ChameleonsNorthwest Home Page and they said he was between 2 - 3 months. And I've had him for 4.

  10. #10
    jnk144's Avatar
    jnk144 is offline Newbie
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    Well, then little Geddy should be about 6-7 months old, from what the breeder said.

    I have read that with good husbandry, a crested gecko can mature by 9-12 months, with nose to tail tip length anywhere from 8 to 10 inches.

    Again, a breeder would be able to post more information, having experience.

    Since you have the breeder's contact information, you should ask the breeder directly. I'm sure the breeder would love to hear how one of the little ones is doing.
    Jenn
    -----
    0.1.0 Hemitheconyx caudicinctus, Marv
    1.0.0 Eublepharus macularius, Muscles
    0.2.0 Rhacodactylus ciliatus, Reba and Maybe
    1.0.0 Ambystoma maculatum, Lou

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