If you're considering a gecko pet for your family, congrats! These curious little lizards come in a variety of types, colors, sizes, and personalities. Thankfully, they all tend to eat the same general food: insects! What looks like a creepy, crawly bug or worm to you is a scrumptious protein-filled dinner for your gecko. Here's what you need to know.
What Do Geckos Eat?
Most varieties of geckos (including leopards, African fat-tailed, tokays, house, flying, cave, and frog-eyed) are insectivores and prefer a diet of crickets, waxworms, earthworms, mealworms, fruit flies, moths, or grasshoppers offered every two to four days. Some adult geckos will also enjoy pinkie or infant mice. If the thought of keeping live prey on hand isn't appealing, try dehydrated mealworms for easy feeding.
Some types of geckos enjoy eating fruit in addition to insects. The most common frugivorous varieties include crested, gargoyle, chahoua, day, and mourning geckos. Offer fruit as a once a-week treat. A few favorites include papaya, pears, blueberries, mango, guava, cherries, pineapple, plums, grapes, apples, watermelon, and bananas. The best way to offer fruit is in a pureed form.
To keep feeding simple and nutritionally balanced, consider offering your fruit-loving pet Gecko Gold Powdered Diet. This prepared food keeps in the refrigerator for up to seven days. You can offer it to juvenile geckos daily and adults up to three times each week.
Feeding Your Gecko's Prey Insects
To make your gecko's diet more robust and nutrient-dense, consider gut loading the crickets, mealworms and other insects that you will feed your pet with extra vitamins and minerals. You can do this easily by offering Gut Load Cricket Drink with Calcium to boost both the hydration and calcium content of the insects. You can also increase the nutritional value of your gecko's live prey by offering it nutrient-dense fresh produce including leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, parsley, and carrots. Just before you feed your gecko, dust the insects with calcium powder for extra nutrition.
What Do Geckos Drink?
Just like us, geckos drink water. They also love to soak in water to assist with the routine shedding of their skin (like a snake!). Be sure your pet gecko has a shallow water bowl inside his terrarium where he can drink and bathe. Change the water daily to keep it fresh and bacteria-free. It's also a good idea to set up a moist area in your pet's habitat. Watermisted sphagnum peat moss tucked inside a hiding rock provides a cozy place for your pet to relax.
If you're still shopping for your new pet, check out " 6 Types of Pet Geckos" to help you make your decision. We also offer care sheets for a variety of reptile species that explain housing needs, what to feed, and other wellness tips.