100% Leopard Gecko Care Sheet - Geckos Unlimited

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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#40---Exo Terra Enclosure for a leopard gecko: 36 x 18 x 18 inches tall . . . . . . Elizabeth Freer -- May 2023 (update)

Exo Terra has a good enclosure for a leopard gecko which measures 36 inches long x 18 inches wide x 18 inches tall!

Create either a naturalistic environment (no bugs or worms as a clean up crew) or a bioactive enclosure which includes a clean up crew.

1. Create a 3-4 inch deep substrate that's 70% topsoil (perlite-free, manure-free, & fertilizer-free) & 30% washed play sand. Check Scott's brand topsoils' ingredients. Earthgro topsoil from Home Depot works too.
2. Heat with overhead incandescent/halogen bulb(s) or maybe an 80 watt Deep Heat Projector that's located right next to your UVB tube.
3. Provide UVB with Arcadia's 12 inch long ShadeDweller tube & fixture. Your UVB tube should = 1/3 to 1/2 the enclosure's length. UVB compact fluorescent bulbs aren't safe to use.
4. Locate a slate basking area beneath the heat source at a distance dependent upon the % UVB blockage of your mesh screen. IF you don't know your screen's brand, share an image of it with FB's premier Reptile Lighting group. Reptile Lighting has experts who can identify the mesh grid by counting pixels in your image!

(click to enlarge)
Much appreciation goes to the photographer.

Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#41---Senior Leos (10 yo & older), Giants & Super Giants, your First Leo

Senior Leopard Geckos (10 yo & older)
Please share pictures & comments about any leopard gecko you have who is 10 years old or older. As husbandry improves we hope that more senior leos will be featured here.

Early 2016: Just recently I heard of a female leopard gecko in the EU who is now 32 years old! She was bred in her youth. 🍌
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Share your leopard geckos who are potentially giants or super giants
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Share the story of your first leo

Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#42---Repashy products: Calcium Plus, RescueCal+, Bug Burger, Grub Pie

Repashy Calcium Plus

Repashy RescueCal + (former product) The only calcium plus magnesium supplement on the market. Especially good for calcium crashing geckos. :)

Repashy Bug Burger

Repashy Grub Pie - can be mixed as a paste
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#43---Zoo Med Under Tank Heat Mats are NOT reusable......

Click: Zoo Med link

Updated info from Zoo Med on 19 Feb 2013:
-----Original Message-----
From: Ashley Rademacher
To: Elizabeth Freer
Sent: Tue, Feb 19, 2013 8:31 am
Subject: RE: ZM/ar 18 Feb 2013......

Hi Elizabeth,

"The Under Tank Heater should be stuck to a tank using the adhesive side of the heater. It is NOT meant to be removed and re-applied. If the heater is ever removed from a tank, is should be discarded and not used again. The process of peeling the heater off of the tank can cause damage to the wiring inside the heater which can lead to hot spots and further damage in the future. With this in mind, there should be no need to use any additional adhesive product to stick the heater to a tank. It is important to read and follow ALL of the instructions for application and use of this heater. If there are any questions, customer service at Zoo Med Labs should be contacted for assistance. Please e-mail zoomed@zoomed.com, view the FAQ’s on the product web page at Zoo Med Laboratories | #1 Reptile Products Worldwide -- Welcome to Zoo Med, or call 805.542.9988 with any questions."

Best regards,
Ashley Rademacher
Animal Care and Education Coordinator
Zoo Med Labs, Inc.
Toll Free 888.496.6633

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Received this caution from Zoo Med on 11 Feb 2013:

"Aluminum electricians' tape (has been) recommended to attach the heater to the tank – I would not suggest doing this.......It is very important to use the adhesive part of the heater to stick the heater to the tank. What this does is provide a bond with no air in between to allow the heat to be transferred through the glass and into the terrarium. Failure to stick the heater to the tank will likely cause the heater to overheat, shrink, and eventually short out. This end result may occur after the heater has become deformed and discolored. This heater relies on the bond to the glass to move heat away from the heater, so this step should not be overlooked or modified. Again, I can’t guarantee that it won’t work if used outside of the directions, but we can’t guarantee that it will either. You can forward this information along as well."

Best regards,
Ashley Rademacher
Animal Care and Education Coordinator
Zoo Med Labs, Inc.
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#44---The Bean Farm's Flexwatt Info/Use Sheet

The Bean Farm's Flexwatt Info/Use Sheet

Copyright 2006  The Bean Farm

Important!! Bean Farm LLC’s Flexwatt Disclaimer. Since the use of this product is beyond our control, there is no implied warranty of results. This product is furnished upon the condition that the user will determine its suitability, that the user assumes all risks whatsoever and that neither the seller nor the manufacturer shall be liable for any injury, loss or damage, direct or consequential, arising from use or inability to use the product.

The Flexwatt material being supplied is a heating product and a thermostat must be used.
  • This product should be used with a rheostat/dimmer intended for incandescent lights or a proportional thermostat.
WARNING! You manufacture this product yourself, there are no implied warranties and you incur all liability when using this product. The manufacturer states that a qualified electrician should install it. Use common sense when using this or any other electrical heat element.
  • 17" is 10 watts per foot. Max length of heat strip is 48 panels or 50'. (17" is 12.5" per panel. 24 panels equals 25 feet)
  • 11" is 20 watts per foot. Max length of heat strip is 24 panels or 25'. (11" is 12.5" per panel. 24 panels equals 25 feet)
  • 4" is 8 watts per foot. Max length of heat strip is 60 feet.
  • 3" is 10 watts per foot. Max length of heat strip is 48 feet.
Items that people have used to cover Flexwatt
  • Aluminum Foil Tape, Duct Tape, Glass, Ceramic Tile, Aluminum/Tin Sheet Metal, Kitchen Shelf (contact) paper.
  • You can router shelves for the heat tape to sit in. The heat tape can be tacked down with silicone. The heat tape in the routed shelf can have a piece of sheet metal or glass on top of the heat tape in the groove.
  • The key is to let the heat dissipate and to not be trapped. Do not nail or staple through heat tape!!!
Flexwatt for use in Cages
  • If using on shelf with shoeboxes or glass aquariums you can lay the tape on top of the shelf and cover it in a fashion listed above. These enclosures will not burn or melt if tape is regulated properly. We recommend a single pole Leviton dimmer for incandescent lighting or a Proportional Thermostat. See TBF Web Page
  • If using with a wooden cage it is recommended that you cut a slot and slide the tape inside the enclosure and cover it in a fashion listed above. Keep the electrical connections outside the cage. You can also run the tape on the vertical walls inside the cage if desired. We do not recommend running the heat tape underneath a wooden enclosure.
Controlling Flexwatt
  • 600 Watt incandescent rotary on/off Dimmer. See TBF Web Page
  • Proportional Thermostat. See TBF Catalog
Important Things to Know about Flexwatt.
  • Keep tape under 95 degree F. This is a manufacturer’s recommendation. You must use a dimmer or a thermostat to achieve this; otherwise the tape will usually exceed this temperature.
  • When cutting tape: 3" & 4" - always cut through the clear stripe. 11" & 17" always cut on the cut line.
  • Always insulate the wired end with Flexwatt insulators (you can also fill them in with silicone when you are finished with the wiring). Insulate the unwired ends of the heat tape with electrical tape or 3M sealant tape. See the diagram on Flexwatt instruction sheet.
  • For those who are electrically inclined, as an alternative to using the metal connectors, you can solder a cord set directly to the heat tape.
  • To hook up a dimmer make sure you do so between the plug and the heat tape. When splicing in dimmer cut only one of the two wires that go to the tape. Do not cut both! After cutting one wire hook the dimmer up "in line". See diagram. If you do not understand this or ask a qualified person to help. Use an insulation box to house the dimmer and its connections.
For thermostats follow the manufacturers instructions.
  • Do not plug the heat tape in when it is rolled up or overlapping.
  • Flexwatt Heat Tape is sold by the foot. We sell clip sets, cord sets, dimmers and thermostats. Each Clip set makes one electrical connection. All Flexwatt items are sold separately.
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#45---Feeder Insect Research . . . . . . Mark D. Finke, PhD -- 2015 & 2005

Kindly pay attention to the color of your gecko's urates. Healthy gecko urates are pure white.
Mark D. Finke's 2015 research -- thanks to Susan K
Finke M. D. "Complete Nutrient Content of Four Species of Available Feeder Insects Fed Enhanced
Diets During Growth" Zoo Biol. 34:554–564, 2015

Mark D. Finke's 2005 research
Finke MD, Dunham SU, Kwabi CA. 2005. Evaluation of four dry commercial gut loading products for improving the calcium content of crickets, Acheta domesticus. J Herpetol Med Surg 15:7-12
\/ \/ Google 2005 article first:
Click: https://watermark.silverchair.com/1...kLAfbTX9FoTNCYYYPvWJkVCNVHqZTD3OFO5t48WiZTjxQ

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Use as an insect & worm gut load/food no more than 48 hours prior to feeding insects & worms to your geckos.

When using T-Rex Calcium Plus Food for Crickets (or any other "formal" gutload including Mazuri High Calcium Gut Loading Diet), your multivitamin &/or calcium with vitamin D3 light dusting may need to be adjusted or eliminated!

T-Rex Calcium Plus Food for Crickets was independently tested in the following studies. Mazuri High Calcium Gut Loading Diet was not tested.

An excellent "formal" gut load: The Mazuri High Calcium Gut Loading Diet is NOT intended to breed or raise insects or worms.

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T-REX Calcium Plus Food for Crickets contained sufficient calcium to meet the estimated requirements of insectivorous reptiles & significantly more calcium than those fed the other treatments.

Provide crickets with water (damp paper towel), but no fruits or vegetables since crickets will consume those preferentially over the calcium-enriched diet.

NONE of the other 5 "gutload" products/"treatments" tested increased the calcium content to suitable levels at all.

Addendum by cricket4u on 20 Aug 2013:
"Keep in mind that this contains a much higher amount of vitamin A & D3 than most commercial products. Therefore you really want to be careful with the multivitamin supplement. Just start a thread if you do notice any changes. As a matter of fact take pictures of the feces and urates. I'm just a little concerned with someone adding too much (multivitamin) supplementation on top.
  • Once you begin using this product keep an eye on feces & urates for any color changes. Healthy urates are pure white.
  • If you notice increased drinking by your leos, reduce dusting. Increased drinking can occur with excessive supplementation."

Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#46---Heat Mats: Zoo Med's Repti-Therm, Ultratherm, Fluker's, IntelliTemp, & Kane

Leopard geckos depend upon heat mats (UTHs) for necessary belly heat in order to digest their food.

I highly recommend covering 1/2 the floor's footprint with your under tank heat mat. That will NOT be overkill! Ultratherm heat mats do that well.

When choosing a heat mat for a gecko enclosure, go by actual dimensions as well as wattage. Heat mats ONLY basically heat the area where they are stuck, not much more. Even though heat rises, don't count on the heat mat to raise the ambient air temperatures much at all.

For the safety of your gecko and your home, always use a thermostat.
  • Several brands of inexpensive & proportional thermostats are listed at the beginning of my Leopard Gecko Care Sheet.
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Zoo Med's Repti-Therm Sizes:
  • Mini - 4" x 5" (1-5 Gallons)
  • Small - 6" x 8" (10-20 Gallons)
  • Medium - 8" x 12" (30-40 Gallons)
  • Large - 8" x 18" (50-60 Gallons)
Zoo Med's Repti-Therm heat mats incorporate special insulation with a vinyl cover to help direct heat into the cage and raise the ambient air temperature of your terrarium. They utilize solid state nichrome heating elements that produce a great deal of heat with wattages ranging from 6 to 22 watts (depending on size). A special glue adhesive allows for easy attachment to the bottom of your terrarium.

Zoo Med's Repti-Therm heat mats can only be used on glass aquariums. For plastic and acrylic cages check out IntelliTempTM Reptile Heat Mats.
Zoo Med heat mats are NOT designed to be reused. When they are removed from the initial placement, wires can become damaged and could cause a fire hazard. ~

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Ultratherm heat mats come in 11 different sizes.
Ultratherm's 11 x 17 inch heat mats actually measure 9.5 x 17 inches. Fluker's 11 x 17 inch heat mat measures 11 x 17 inches.

Ultratherm's heat mats can be reused, because they're stuck to the enclosure with aluminum tape (Nashua tape).

For any Exo Terra enclosure, confirm that the Exo Terra actually measures 18 inches where you wish to stick the mat. Verify the mat's dimensions as well. :)

Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#47---Are Waxworms Addictive? . . . . . . Zux -- July 2017

"Hi there,

"This is another of the many slightly misconstrued pieces of information which has subsequently been passed around on the internet.

"While there is to truth in saying that Waxmoth larvae are high in fat relative to other species, they are also a very good source of vitamin C for example among other minerals and micro-nutrient content.

"It is my feeling that we would be doing our reptiles a disservice by deciding to remove the Waxworm from the diet entirely. I believe it has a valid place as part of a varied diet and can be offered in low numbers as often as weekly, particularly so to individuals who may require gaining of weight due to illness.

"Being soft bodied and evidently relished by Reptiles and Amphibians alike, if we regularly overfeed these larvae our pets are often intelligent enough to hold out for more of these rather than take less tasty prey we may then offer.

"Make no mistake however, this is keeper error and not anything to do with the Waxworm having addictive properties, which to clarify - it does not.

"Also worth noting is that dietary Fat should not be viewed with the same abhorrence as we might view adding more of the overabundant phosphorous to the captive diet. It does have value and it is worthy of inclusion, particularly for those of us who may go to great lengths to feed otherwise less fatty prey such as Silkworms and Crickets a great majority of the time.

"In short - You may feed these at any age, but ensure you do so sparingly and no more than once per week. This way you can include the species in the diet, offer your pet the enjoyment of a relished prey item and avoid any risks of their reluctance to take other prey thereafter.

"Hope that helped."
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#48---Can plain calcium carbonate be overdosed?

July 2017
\/ See post 2 (Zux) on this thread:
Click: https://www.geckosunlimited.com/community/threads/83468 Feeding leo calcium

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Hilde's comment ~
https://www.geckosunlimited.com/community/posts/387135 Leos having health issues setup question

In that thread, post #5 in particular, Hilde recommends: "The only way to properly regulate vitamin and mineral intake, calcium in particular, is to only supply it via gutloading and dusting."

"Dusting is only secondary, the most important thing is to use an excellent 24/7/365 gutload."

Your corrections, Hilde, are much appreciated.

1 March 2013: After further discussion, the best approach is to feed your crickets & other feeders a very healthy diet 24/7/365. Gut loading 48 hours prior to feeding crickets to geckos can only partially increase the health of any feeder cricket, roach, or worm. Lightly dust feeders too.

2 March 2013:
Captured directly from Hilde's post #134, 27 Feb 2013, on "spoiled by crickets" thread in the crestie forum.

"If you feed the insects a decent diet full time, not just a day before feeding them off, you really improve the nutrients they'll provide - build a better body, not just fill the relatively short intestinal tract."

Added on 1 September 2013:
Click: Calcium metabolism and metabolic bone disease

Click: Hypercalcemia
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#50---Health Questionnaire . . . . . . January 2023 (update)

Please don't make the mistake of using this forum as an alternative to seeking proper medical treatment for your pet. Geckos Unlimited members have varying experience levels. Not all the advice you get on Geckos Unlimited is valid.

When posting questions on Geckos Unlimited please remember that if you fear your leopard gecko is sick, it is best to take him/her to a vet. Hands-on examination is necessary in order to conclusively diagnose problem(s).

The Basic Information highlights areas that contribute to many gecko problems. The Additional Information is ALSO useful. Please complete as much as you can. High quality pictures are extraordinarily helpful.

Basic Information
Species of lizard:
Gecko's name:

Enclosure dimensions (length x width x height):
Substrate provided:

What is the type & brand of thermometer (digital with probe, temperature gun, analog (circle), combo digital thermometer/hygrometer, stainless steel aquarium type, other)?
What is the basking area ground temperature?
What is the air temperature on the warm end about 4 inches up from the ground:
What is the air temperature on the cool end about 4 inches up from the ground:
What device(s) are used to maintain enclosure's temperature: overhead halogen bulb(s), Deep Heat Projector (DHP), Ceramic Heat Emitter, under tank heat mat, Flexwatt heat tape, hot rock, other)?

Insects & worms, list kinds:
Regular diet fed to insects:
Regular diet fed to worms:

How often do you feed your gecko?
Please list any supplements (with brand names) used. How are they given and how often?

If your gecko is sick, please describe the signs & how long your gecko has been showing these signs:

Additional Information
Gecko's total length:
Length of your reptile when you first acquired it:
Source (pet store, breeder, previous owner):
Captive bred or wild caught:

Enclosure -- include photos
Number of hides:
Location of hides:
Is there a humidity hide? location?
Describe other furnishings:
List recent changes in the environment, if any:

Incandescent/halogen wattage:
UVB: yes or no?
UVB brand & strength:
Tube/linear UVB, length of linear UVB, OR compact fluorescent bulb (Compact fluorescent bulbs usually provide inadequate UVB.)
Photoperiod lighting:
Natural daylight from room windows:

using a heat mat, do you provide ventilation space for your heat mat by elevating the enclosure above the shelf with something like Pink Pearl erasers?
Are you using a thermostat?
In which hide does your gecko spend most time inside? Warm hide, cool hide, other?
Is the temperature decreased at night? By how much? A night temperature drop to ~ 67*F is appropriate for leopard geckos.

Is the humidity measured?
Humidity range:

Are the insects & worms “gut loaded” 24/7/365 days per year?
Are the feeders ONLY gut loaded 24-48 hours prior to feeding off to your gecko?
What do you feed your geckos' worms & bugs?
What calcium brand are you using? with D3, without D3, or both?
Are you keeping ANY supplement in the enclosure all the time?
Which reptile multivitamins brand & name do you use? How often? Please include brand & exact product name.
Please list any recent additions/changes in the diet:

General Health
Is your gecko’s general activity level normal, decreased, or increased?
Is your gecko’s appetite normal, decreased, or increased?
Have you noticed any of the following?
Weight (loss or gain):
Discharge from the eyes or nose:
Increased breathing rate or effort:
Change in the droppings:
---white or yellowish:
---size of urates as compared to size of feces:
Abnormal skin color or shedding:
Parasites on the skin or in the feces:

Previous problems and/or illnesses

Other Critters in Same Cage or in Household

List other animals that are kept in the same cage:
Recent acquisitions (new pets within the past 6 months):
Are any of your other pets ill?
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#51---Leopard Gecko Research . . . . . . Hilde

Eublepharis macularius
was first described by zoologist Edward Blyth in 1854. There's been enough peace time to do lots of research and study on this species and the related ones.

Click: https://www.geckosunlimited.com/community/threads/81734 Leopard geckos husbandry housing and heating: natural-history-biology-eublepharis-macularius

For a historical perspective from the first mention of such to the most recent info:
This one has reference links at the bottom, some with direct links to the source papers online.
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#52---Silkworm Guidelines
Recommend purchasing the silkworms separately from the food. The worms in the cup do not do as well if ordered online and packaged together.

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"Silkworms must be kept in a warm, dry environment. For optimal growth keep your silkworm's 70-85F temperature rage. Upon arrival, open any containers that contain silkworms. Dump the Silkworms into the bottom of a plastic box, or one of our silkworm keepers. Our plastic silkworm keepers are reusable and easy to clean.

"If you ordered powdered mulberry food, prepare it upon arrival. Follow the directions on the food, or see cooking instructions below. Orders will be given food to eat during transit. You should feed all silkworms ASAP upon arrival. If you ordered pre-made mulberry food, it's "ready-to-feed". If you‘re using fresh mulberry leaves be sure to wash them before feeding. With the mulberry food, grate a thin layer over the top of the silkworms; we prefer the silkworm food grater for feeding out the silkworm food. Silkworms will immediately crawl up and start to feed on the food. With fresh mulberry leaves cover the silkworms with two layers of leaves.

"Silkworms should be fed daily. If you're looking for rapid growth, feed twice a day. If you're looking to slow growth down, feed once every other day. Silkworms eat a lot of food, be prepared to have on hand food for the worms you have coming, with the correct amount of silkworm food or mulberry leaves when in season.

"It's important to wash your hands before handling the silkworms and the mulberry food. Once you remove a silkworm from the colony do not place them back into the colony. This will increase your chances of introducing bacteria to your silkworm colony. We recommend you discarding any uneaten silkworms that are left in your animal's cage, if any! Over cleaning is a bad thing, and will lead to a high die off. We recommend keeping handling of the silkworms to a minimum to decrease your chances of a die off. For this reason we recommend you have a spare silkworm keeper to transfer the silkworms to when cleaning time comes. You should not clean out the silkworm keepers more then once a week, doing so will increase your chance of a high die off. In general we have found it best to keep all handling of the silkworms to a minimum at the same time keeping things clean."
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#53---Golden Gate Gecko's Bug Slurry...comments by exotics veterinarian Dr. Burgess

Comments from Dr. Burgess regarding the use of the Bug Slurry recipe:
  • He states that using Hill's A/D alone is sufficient.
  • He says that feeding a leopard gecko mealworms is like a steady diet of McDonald's French Fries, and should only be fed sparingly.
  • He says that baby food squash has too many carbohydrates for carnivorous reptiles like leopard geckos.
  • He recommends using Pretty Pets Aquatic Turtle Chow in the blender with the Hill's A/D.
  • He does not like the use of commercially formulated reptile supplements.
  • He recommends a diet with a 2:1 Ca/P ratio for complete reptile nutrition.
  • He does not recommend using Ensure because it is developed for humans.
Originally Posted by Dr. Burgess
geckos-- they ARE carnivores; (insectivores = carnivores, not herbivores). They simply subsist on (mostly) invertebrate prey rather than vertebrate, but that still qualifies as a high protein/low plant-fiber diet. Some larger geckos will eat pinky mice, fish, etc, if offered. But even if they don't, 'insectivore' is just a sub-group of 'carnivore'.

Originally Posted by Dr. Burgess
as far as supplement powders, it's not just that nutrient content may need to vary with species; it was also that the dose of ANY powder should vary with body size (even between baby and adult geckos, for instance) ... and this isn't accounted for with those products, making them impossible to dose with high accuracy. Again, it's another risk factor when using powders; no one really knows what the exact dose should be; overdosage is very common, though may take months to years to produce fatality in many cases. I have most my reptile patients completely off of all vitamin-mineral supplements, and if the diet is good, they have no nutrient problems at all. Just like in the wild.
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#54---Miscellaneous Facts about Leopard Geckos
  • A leopard gecko's preferred body temperature (PBT) is 86*F/30*C.
  • Leopard geckos are really crepuscular, not nocturnal.
  • Leopard geckos do NOT have endolymphatic sacs for storing calcium.
Click: Interview with Karsten Griesshammer: Field Herping In Iran - Gecko Time - Gecko Time . . . . . . shared by Conched/Matt 17 November 2014

***Cannibalism in Leopard Geckos---shared by Hilde 12 March 2013:
"Cannibalism in leopard geckos isn't unusual. Housing unequal sized geckos together could spell disaster, even if they're all well fed.

Leopard geckos are known to eat smaller lizards, maybe not often, but they will occasionally take advantage of an opportunity to change the menu a bit.

This link goes to a cached Google copy of a .PDF, you don't have to download it, just view it online.
If you're the least bit squeamish, don't look at the pictures on page #2, reading the text on page #1 will give you the full idea of what can happen."

Click: invalid link https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&...6FBy6R&sig=AHIEtbRfaIYuPGifPrRIebPOrE75crIJ2Q
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#56---Significantly Increasing Ambient Humidity in a Leo Enclosure...GU's ebross67

"If you have a screen lid, then you could use tin foil and cover up the mesh. Leave a hole for the dome CHE/light, and a hole for a moist rag. Place a piece tinfoil over the top of the rag. This will cause the evaporation to be drawn down into the enclosure. The tinfoil traps the humidity in the enclosure, and you don't have to worry about another type of material getting moldy. Also, use a larger water dish like Elizabeth suggested. I live in Colorado and it's been brutally dry. My house is at 5-10% humidity. This method works for me and keeps my humidity around 40%."


"I don't find it an issue, because I have my CHE set on a thermostat (83), and the CHE is heat directed. The glass is an excellent heat/cool conductor, so it doesn't trap any heat on the cool side. My cool side ambient air always stays at room temp (72). I cover the entire screen. The foil isn't airtight (so there is O2 access in the tank), but it does trap the evaporation from the rag and large water dish."
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#58---TetraFauna Supplements -- label has CHANGED 3/7/2018

Update coming......

Tetrafauna's ReptoLife Plus vitamins

This one: Tetrafauna ReptoLife Plus - 1.77 oz Reptile Food Supplements?

It supplies vit.'s a, B1, B2, B6, B12, D3, E, C, zinc, manganese, copper, iodine, iron, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium.


TetraFauna's ReptoCal with D3

Click: Reptile Vitamins & Supplements: TetraFauna ReptoCal Reptile Supplement at Drs. Foster and Smith

This supplement contains more vitamins than just calcium and D3.

It has a poor vitamin A to D3 ratio and is not a complete multivitamin. The A is too high for the D3 amount. It will interfere with D3 and cause imbalances. The best ratio is 100:10:1 Vitamin A to D to E.
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#59---Thermostats: Hydrofarm's Jump Start MTPRTC, Inkbird, Apollo, & Zilla


  • Hydrofarm's Jump Start MTPRTC
  • Inkbird models: INK-306T & ITC-306T
  • Apollo ($20)
  • Zilla’s analog: 1,000 watt-3 outlets
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Jump Start MTPRTC directions

No variance information listed in these directions.

Click: http://www.hydrofarm.com/downloads/fc/MTPRTC_instr_18734.pdf

The Hydrofarm tech support person mentioned the temperature differential for the Jump Start MTPRTC thermostat. He said there will only be a 3% differential. For instance, if the thermostat's "set" temperature is 91 F, then it can be expected that the temperature will drop down no more than 3 degrees (3% of 91) to 88 F before cycling on. There is also a chance that after it shuts off at 91 F, the temperature as read at the probe could be a smidge higher than 91 F.

As mentioned, it is always important to verify the "set" temperature with a trusted thermometer or temperature gun.

My Pro Exotics PE-2 temperature gun (TempGun.com) has an accuracy of +/- 1.8 degrees F at room temperature.

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BAH 1000 vs Hydrofarm MTPRTC thermostats
"I have had no issue with either thermostat. The Hydrofarm is connected to the heat mat, which is its intended use and has done an excellent job of maintaining temps within 2 degrees above or below the setting. I set it at 91, and my ground temps have not varied beyond 89-93 since I started using it. I check my ground temps twice a day. Once when I get to school in the morning and once before I leave. The BAH is connected to the CHE and is set at 85 degrees. It seems to do a good job maintaining temps as well. My CHE is 100 watt, and it kicks on and off as needed.

"In tandem, they have worked well together. I have had no issues at all since I first set them. I literally set them to the correct temps, and have never had to touch them again."
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Elizabeth Freer

Active member
#60a---Heating Melamine & Wooden Enclosures: Hilde, mecoat, acpart, & JIMI

1. GU's Hilde

1insidecompartment (1).jpg 2uthunder (1).jpg 4uthcordside (1).jpg 5uthhidebox (1).jpg

2. GU's mecoat's wooden vivarium with two inside heat mats. (Maybe I'll make mecoat's thread a separate thread.)

P9050604.jpg P9050590.jpg P9050586.jpg P9050587.jpg P9050588.jpg

Thread #1, post #24 +, has mecoat's latest developments.

  1. Scroll to post #24 for mecoat's updated wooden vivarium leopard gecko setup: https://www.geckosunlimited.com/community/threads/67820 Vivarium easy cleaning removable floor
  2. Click: https://www.geckosunlimited.com/community/threads/69166 Wooden-vivarium-help
  3. Click: https://www.geckosunlimited.com/community/posts/437948 Merry Christmas meet superdaff

3. GU's acpart: Here's how Aliza extends the usable space in her 20 gallon LONG vivariums. Her methods can easily be adapted for other sized enclosures.

photo (13).jpg

"I use 4 pieces of PVC pipe as the "legs". They are 6" tall and come with a screw on part to give it a more stable "foot". (I think they're toilet flanges or something like that.) On top of that, I put two 12" x 12" tiles with a Zoomed mini UTH sandwiched between. I put a small tile at each corner between the two tiles to vent the UTH and then put a hide on top. The lay box on the ground level provides a way for them to climb up, but I've seen them get up there directly from the ground without the benefit of lay box."

Click for the "legs" of her platform: DBHL 1-1/2 in. x 6 in. Polypropylene Slip-Joint Extension Tube-HP9792 - The Home Depot

4. GU's JIMI:
"I used ideas from this thread as well and adapted them to my own viv. It's working very well for me. I have a heat cable sandwiched between two tiles and ventilated the space between the two tiles using 4 rubber feet I had left over from another UTH. I elevated the tiles using 4 glass cups and put decorative pebbles inside to make them look nicer. It just took a little creativity. :)"

For JIMI's pictures click here.
Scroll below to post #3 for JIMI's heating for her leo Theseus.
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