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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Leopard Gecko Not Eating -- Just Licks Prey


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    My leopard gecko Astara has been with me since the 22nd of February. She never had any troubles eating until about two weeks ago when she started to slow down.

    This week, she has not eaten at all. She currently has almost no interest in prey items, and the only times she has shown interest, she either a) licks at the superworm in front of her or b) slowly pursues the cricket but does not attempt to strike. Last night, she was climbing like crazy all over the enclosure, and she isn't lethargic at all-- other than the climbing, she's been exactly like her usual self, aside from the appetite issue of course.

    Basic Information
    Gecko's name:
    Astara

    Morph:
    Super Snow W/Y

    Gender:
    Female

    Age:
    18 months

    Weight:
    She is 65 grams, unless I somehow zeroed out the scale wrong in which case she is 55 grams. I don't want to stress her out again by putting her back in the cup to weigh her, but I will check again tomorrow once she's had time to chill out a bit.

    Enclosure
    Enclosure dimensions (length x width x height):
    30x12x12 (20 gallon long)

    Substrate provided:
    Ceramic tile


    Temperatures
    What type and brand of thermometer:
    Windbells Digital Thermometer

    What is the ground temperature right on the substrate under the warm dry hide:
    85.7

    What is the air temperature on the warm end about 4 inches up from the ground:
    ~80

    What is the air temperature on the cool end about 4 inches up from the ground:
    ~75

    What device(s) are used to maintain the temperature:
    Undertank heater with iPower thermostat

    Feeding
    Insects and worms, list type:
    Crickets and superworms

    Regular diet fed to the insects:
    Finely ground Zoo Med Natural Adult Bearded Dragon Food

    Regular diet fed to the worms:
    Finely ground Zoo Med Natural Adult Bearded Dragon Food, oats (though that's also the bedding they came in)

    How often do you feed your gecko?
    and
    Please list any supplements (with brand names) used. How are they given and how often?
    I use the 18+ month schedule posted on the forums for her. I use ZooMed's Reptivite without D3 and Exo Terra's calcium with D3.


    She also last pooped on March 10th, a little small but 100% healthy, with a white urate

    I know this time of year does mean ovulation for females and that it can impact their appetite, but I'm starting to get concerned. Is she licking them for the calcium? Is she just being weird? I'm not sure what's going on.
    Phil
    Fire Skink
    Male, Age Unknown


    Astara
    Leopard Gecko
    Female, 1 YR
    Thanks Elizabeth Freer thanked for this post

  2. #2
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    Here is an image of her from Tuesday (with her most recent poop... lol... it was removed after! I just didn't want to disturb her before I took a picture).
    Phil
    Fire Skink
    Male, Age Unknown


    Astara
    Leopard Gecko
    Female, 1 YR

  3. #3
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    She looks pretty good. Possibly the floor on the hot side could be a bit warmer but in my experience that doesn't seem to make that much of a difference (others may have a different opinion). I do find that this ovulation period can cause longer periods of not eating than we would imagine. Keep offering and try not to worry.

    Aliza
    Thanks skadi.skinks thanked for this post

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    Thanks for chiming in, I really appreciate it! Right now her warm hide is 89.0, not sure why the jump in temperature when I've not moved anything around in there since, but that means it's back to the temperature it typically is. I think I'll stick with trying to give her a superworm or two since the crickets are hard to catch once they're loose in there.
    Phil
    Fire Skink
    Male, Age Unknown


    Astara
    Leopard Gecko
    Female, 1 YR

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by skadi.skinks View Post
    Thanks for chiming in, I really appreciate it! Right now her warm hide is 89.0, not sure why the jump in temperature when I've not moved anything around in there since, but that means it's back to the temperature it typically is. I think I'll stick with trying to give her a superworm or two since the crickets are hard to catch once they're loose in there.
    Warm hide temps between 88-92*F are perfect.

    Temperatures - A temperature gradient from warm to cool maintains your leo's health. Here's a temperature guide for all leopard geckos as measured with the probe of a digital thermometer or a temp gun (and controlled by a thermostat set at 91*F/32.8*C).

    Place the thermostat's probe and a digital thermometer's probe together right on top of the substrate underneath the warm dry hide. If you use a UTH + a CHE you'll need 2 separate thermostats, because ground and air temperatures are substantially different.

    • Warm dry hide ground temperature: 88-92 F (31.1-33.3 C) inside a leo's warm dry hide.
    • Warm humid/moist hide: Also place the humid hide 100% on top of the heat mat. Keep temperatures similar to the warm dry hide.
    • Cool dry hide ground temperature: 70ish-75 F (21.1-23.9 C) Usually the cool end ground temperature matches the room temperature where the enclosure sits.
    • no greater than 82ish F (27.8ish C) air temperature - 4 inches (10 cm) above ground on the warm end
    • no greater than 75 F (23.9 C) air temperature - 4 inches (10 cm) above ground on the cool end

    Leave the heat mat/UTH on 24/7. If you wish, during the night turn off overhead lighting/heating (~12 hours on and ~12 hours off) unless ambient room temperatures drop lower than 67ish*F (19.4*C).
    Here's an example of the Anchor-brand 8 ounce feeding bowls I use. I think Walmart stocks them right now. For my 9 inch, ~70 gram leo I have a rock ramp leading up to the bowl's rim. I amputate both back cricket's "jumper" legs right below their "knees". The crickets just move slowly after this "operation".

    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 03-20-2020 at 11:57 AM.
    "If you can hear crickets, it's still summer." ;)

    "May the peace that
    You find at the beach
    Follow you home"

    Click: Leo Care Sheet's Table of Contents

    ===> No plain calcium, calcium with D3, or multivitamins inside an enclosure <===

    Oedura castelnaui ~ Lepidodactylus lugubris ~ Phelsuma barbouri ~ Ptychozoon kuhli ~ Cyrtodactylus peguensis zebraicus ~ Phyllurus platurus ~ Eublepharis macularius ~ Correlophus ciliatus ~ (L kimhowelli) ~ (P tigrinus) ~ (P klemmeri) ~ (H garnotii)

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elizabeth Freer View Post
    Warm hide temps between 88-92*F are perfect.



    Here's an example of the Anchor-brand 8 ounce feeding bowls I use. I think Walmart stocks them right now. For my 9 inch, ~70 gram leo I have a rock ramp leading up to the bowl's rim. I amputate both back cricket's "jumper" legs right below their "knees". The crickets just move slowing after this "operation".

    Something I've wondered is how do you manage to grab a cricket long enough to do that? I have prior fed them to her one by one, waiting until she caught it before giving another (and she's quite accurate, it just takes her some time to feel 'ready' to pounce!), but then there were a couple times where I dropped two and she only caught one, then I'm stuck trying to literally herd a cricket toward her.

    I definitely would like to try out the culinary surgery option, I just have no clue how to get ahold of a cricket to do it!
    Phil
    Fire Skink
    Male, Age Unknown


    Astara
    Leopard Gecko
    Female, 1 YR

  7. #7
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    Crickets legs arent attached too securely you can easily pull them off just by grabbing the leg with tongs and giving a little twist.
    Likes Elizabeth Freer liked this post

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by skadi.skinks View Post
    Something I've wondered is how do you manage to grab a cricket long enough to do that? I have prior fed them to her one by one, waiting until she caught it before giving another (and she's quite accurate, it just takes her some time to feel 'ready' to pounce!), but then there were a couple times where I dropped two and she only caught one, then I'm stuck trying to literally herd a cricket toward her.

    I definitely would like to try out the culinary surgery option, I just have no clue how to get ahold of a cricket to do it!
    For small crickets:
    1. Use a tablespoon-sized measuring spoon to scoop up a single cricket.
    2. Gently position this cricket between your fingers with legs facing outwards.
    3. Snip both back "jumper" legs right below the "knees" with a scissors.
    4. /\ That way crickets can still walk around.

    Monitoring a gecko's intake is one reason why I love feeding dishes! Sometimes I use those 8 ounce Anchor-brand dishes. I also use 10 ounce bar glasses for crickets or dubia. It depends whether the geckos have "sticky feet" or not.
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 03-20-2020 at 12:10 AM.
    "If you can hear crickets, it's still summer." ;)

    "May the peace that
    You find at the beach
    Follow you home"

    Click: Leo Care Sheet's Table of Contents

    ===> No plain calcium, calcium with D3, or multivitamins inside an enclosure <===

    Oedura castelnaui ~ Lepidodactylus lugubris ~ Phelsuma barbouri ~ Ptychozoon kuhli ~ Cyrtodactylus peguensis zebraicus ~ Phyllurus platurus ~ Eublepharis macularius ~ Correlophus ciliatus ~ (L kimhowelli) ~ (P tigrinus) ~ (P klemmeri) ~ (H garnotii)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elizabeth Freer View Post
    For small crickets:
    1. Use a tablespoon-sized measuring spoon to scoop up a single cricket.
    2. Gently position this cricket between your fingers with legs facing outwards.
    3. Snip both back "jumper" legs right below the "knees" with a scissors.
    4. /\ That way crickets can still walk around.

    Monitoring a gecko's intake is one reason why I love feeding dishes! Sometimes I use those 8 ounce Anchor-brand dishes. I also use 10 ounce bar glasses for crickets or dubia. It depends whether the geckos have "sticky feet" or not.
    Hmm... could I get the crickets as I normally do by shaking out the tubes into a container, and then put the container into the fridge for a couple of minutes to slow them down? They're so rambunctious I don't know that they'll be pleased with the tablespoon idea, lol!
    Phil
    Fire Skink
    Male, Age Unknown


    Astara
    Leopard Gecko
    Female, 1 YR

  10. #10
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    Hi ~

    If you find your leo slipping on the tile you picture, you might wish to switch to slate tile or to a textured ceramic tile.

    These slate pieces come in various sizes including ~6 inch x 6 inch coaster size.
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 03-20-2020 at 12:18 PM.
    "If you can hear crickets, it's still summer." ;)

    "May the peace that
    You find at the beach
    Follow you home"

    Click: Leo Care Sheet's Table of Contents

    ===> No plain calcium, calcium with D3, or multivitamins inside an enclosure <===

    Oedura castelnaui ~ Lepidodactylus lugubris ~ Phelsuma barbouri ~ Ptychozoon kuhli ~ Cyrtodactylus peguensis zebraicus ~ Phyllurus platurus ~ Eublepharis macularius ~ Correlophus ciliatus ~ (L kimhowelli) ~ (P tigrinus) ~ (P klemmeri) ~ (H garnotii)

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