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    Default New leopard gecko owner


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    Hi,
    I have 2 female leopard geckos housed in a 20 gal enclosure. I use a 75 watt heating bulb an a reptisun 5.0 for uvb. The top is a zilla sliding top with bigger holes for uvb. I feed crickets small an nutri grubs. I have two hiding areas. Just seeing if this is a recommendation setup. I use the sand mat by exo terra. I mist them twice a day. Any advice on proper setup an lighting. I don't use a heat rock or heating pad.

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    First, how old are they? What are the temperatures in the enclosure and how are you measuring them? Are you gut loading the insect and using calcium/vitamin supplements? What kinds of hides do they have?

    To me, a 20 gal is a minimum for a single leo, and a 40 is better. It would be better to get a second 20 (make sure its a 20 long) or better yet, two 40 gallon breeders for leos. (I house mine in 5 ft x 2 ft x 1 ft enclosures and they use every bit of it. This is me personally and for most people excessive in space, but seeing how active they are, I can't imagine keeping them in something less than 36"x18" as a bare minimum)

    It is usually not recommended to house leopard geckos together, even females. It takes just one 'disagreement' for someone to loose their tail or get injured and is almost guaranteed that one is more dominant and will prevent the other from using all the choice basking / hiding spots and from eating as much as it should.

    The sand mats are not the best, but not the worst either. They are hard to clean as bacteria and such gets trapped in the crevices, also sometimes the 'sand' comes loose and they can eat it. This is not as big of a risk as using real sand, but it is there. Ceramic or slate tile is much easier and more natural.

    Heat bulbs are ok, but again not the best - even the "nightime blue" bulbs create light that the geckos can see, so do the red ones, so it's like having 24-7 lights on which can mess up their sleep cycles. Most people use an Under the tank heater **on a thermostat** or Ceramic heat emitters. I personally like the Deep Heat Projectors for mine and in the winter add a small mico ceramic bulb for a little extra bump in heat. I've gone away from using the under the tank heaters now that I have the deep heat projectors - these heat up the rocks under them just like the sun, so they still get some belly heat, but it comes from above. The main key is to have any heat source you choose on a thermostat and regularly checked with some sort of thermometer.

    The double coiled reptisun and similar uvb are not usually recommended, for one thing they are very short - you want the uvb area to cover about 1/3-1/2 of the cage so that they are more likely to be exposed to some of it. A better option would be the arcadia shade dweller - it is designed for crepuscular and low light lizards. Some people don't use UVB at all and just make sure they supplement regularly with Calcium and D3, which is an option as well. But you would have to either separate them or hand feed them individually to ensure that they are both getting adequate vitamins.

    Misting is usually not needed - they should have access to a moist hide on the warm side of the encloser at all times if then need to shed. Ideally, each gecko needs a warm dry hide, a warm moist hide, and a cool dry hide so they can appropriately thermoregulate. I occasionally mist mine just because they seem to enjoy licking the water off things. Otherwise, unless my humidity gets below about 38% I don't change anything. Just keep their moist hides moist.
    Last edited by SpottedDragon; 12-12-2021 at 07:58 PM.
    Nature is the best teacher, learn by observing

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    They are hatchlings an try keep enclosure about 80 degrees. You mention shade dweller Arcadia. Would a reptisun 5.0 t5 ho be good for these geckos. I use bug burger as the gut load. An use calcium with an without D3 weekly. Vitamins herpivites once a week. Also would a infrared heat projector work as a heat lamp. It's the mega ray kind. Last of these bulbs they stop making them.

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    75-80*F is fine for ambient, then a hot spot of about 88-90*F on the surface that they are resting on. You'd want to stay away from any ho lights (high output) as geckos don't need super intense UVB to get the benefit. There is a link somewhere in here that has supplement schedules by age. I'm not familiar with the megaray lights.

    Also, if they are hatchlings, even sold as female, there is not a 100% way for them to be sexed until they are older.
    Nature is the best teacher, learn by observing

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    Welcome to Geckos Unlimited, Johnlock777! I recommend raising your leos in separate enclosures. A 20 gallon long (30 x 12 x 12 inches tall) makes an ideal home for a hatchling as long as the details are being met. One can always upgrade to UVB later.

    Even 2 females can fight, IF they have a bad day. They will know their sexes before we do!

    At 5-6 months old their genders can be confirmed.

    (4) Sexing Leopard Geckos -- A leopard gecko's gender can be confirmed when that leo is over 5 inches (12.7 cm) in total length. That may happen when the leo is near 6 months old. Males can be distinguished from females by a distinct /\-shaped row of femoral pores above the vent and by two hemipenal bulges below the vent. To see their vents, potential male femoral pores, and hemipenal bulges gently press their bodies up against the glass. They'll squirm if you try to turn them over.
    Make certain the ground temp on the warm end ranges between 88-92*F as measured by the probe of a digital thermometer. They'll need these temps to digest their prey. Your cool end can safely drop to ~70*F.

    I highly recommend Zoo Med's Reptivite multivitamins withOUT D3 @ 1 feeding per week. Reptivite multivitamins contain vitamin A acetate (retinol); Rep Cal's Herptivite multivitamins do not contain retinol. A wee bit of retinol lightly dusted on all bugs or worms at one feeding helps prevent eye and skin problems.
    + Zoo Med Repti Calcium with D3 at another feeding per week.
    + Zoo Med's Repti Calcium withOUT D3 if these leos are less than 12 months old.

    Weekly Schedule 124 for Leopard Geckos 0-12 months old
    (withOUT UVB)
    The medical term for Metabolic Bone Disease = Nutritional Secondary HyperParathyroidism. NSHP symptoms include leaning to one side when walking, walking on one or both "elbows", bowed limbs, belly dragging, and an underbite. Difficulty chewing should be closely monitored.
    The Reptile Supply Company (916-226-4089) based in Lodi, California stocks Zoo Med's ReptiVite multivitamins withOUT D3.
    Lightly dust the prey 3x per week even when your leopard gecko eats daily. When your leo graduates to eating ~3x per week, still lightly dust the prey ONLY 3x per week.

    During this time (0-12 months old) your leopard gecko will be transitioning from daily feeding to feeding ~3x per week. This all depends upon how fast your leo grows!


    • Monday > > crickets or dubia lightly dusted with Zoo Med's Repti Calcium with D3
    • Tuesday > > mealworms, superworms, or black soldier fly larvae (Phoenix worms) > > no dusting
    • Wednesday > > crickets or dubia lightly dusted with pure precipitated calcium carbonate withOUT D3 (Zoo Med's Repti Calcium or NOW's human-grade pure calcium carbonate)
    • Thursday > > mealworms, superworms, or black soldier fly larvae (Phoenix worms) > > no dusting
    • Friday > > crickets or dubia lightly dusted with Zoo Med's ReptiVite multivitamins withOUT D3
    • Saturday > > mealworms, superworms, or black soldier fly larvae (Phoenix worms) > > no dusting
    • Sunday > > no food or free choice > > no dusting
    Click: Leopard Gecko Care Sheet's Table of Contents

    Oedura castelnaui ~ Lepidodactylus lugubris ~ Gekko kuhli ~ Cyrtodactylus zebraicus ~ Phyllurus platurus ~ Eublepharis macularius ~ Correlophus ciliatus ~ (Phelsuma barbouri) ~ (Lygodactylus kimhowelli) ~ (P tigrinus) ~ (P klemmeri) ~ (H garnotii)
    Thanks SpottedDragon, Johnlock777 thanked for this post
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpottedDragon View Post
    75-80*F is fine for ambient, then a hot spot of about 88-90*F on the surface that they are resting on. You'd want to stay away from any ho lights (high output) as geckos don't need super intense UVB to get the benefit. There is a link somewhere in here that has supplement schedules by age. I'm not familiar with the megaray lights.

    Also, if they are hatchlings, even sold as female, there is not a 100% way for them to be sexed until they are older.
    Just click on the Table of Contents link in my signature BELOW to discover 169 links on the Leopard Gecko Care Sheet. That care sheet has a separate resource just for scrolling.
    Last edited by Elizabeth Freer; 12-13-2021 at 12:17 AM.
    Click: Leopard Gecko Care Sheet's Table of Contents

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

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    Quote Originally Posted by SpottedDragon View Post
    75-80*F is fine for ambient, then a hot spot of about 88-90*F on the surface that they are resting on. You'd want to stay away from any ho lights (high output) as geckos don't need super intense UVB to get the benefit. There is a link somewhere in here that has supplement schedules by age. I'm not familiar with the megaray lights.

    Also, if they are hatchlings, even sold as female, there is not a 100% way for them to be sexed until they are older.
    So a heating mat is needed. An uvb would a t8 reptisun 10.0 work? Would be 18" with smallest in size they have.

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    Sorry using my Samsung phone but have a link to the Leo Care Sheets. Tapping it but won't open.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnlock777 View Post
    So a heating mat is needed. An uvb would a t8 reptisun 10.0 work? Would be 18" with smallest in size they have.
    UVB and adequate heat are totally separate. UVBs don't produce much heat.

    What are the dimensions of your current enclosure? UVB should only cover about half the enclosure. Then place a heat source like a halogen bulb or a Deep Heat Project right next to the UVB fixture.

    A heat mat can be totally adequate for young leos. The heat mat should cover about 1/2 the enclosure.
    Click: Leopard Gecko Care Sheet's Table of Contents

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

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    Quote Originally Posted by Johnlock777 View Post
    Sorry using my Samsung phone but have a link to the Leo Care Sheets. Tapping it but won't open.
    Can you access GU via a laptop?

    Do you see the Table of Contents link right below in my signature?
    Click: Leopard Gecko Care Sheet's Table of Contents

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

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