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Before we get any new pets, it’s essential to learn what the dietary requirements are. In the case of crested geckos, it’s vital to know what they can eat. This is why I am going to answer a fascinating question: what can crested geckos eat.
This article will tell you how much do crested geckos eat and how long they can survive without food. We’ll also discuss what to do when crested geckos don’t eat.
The type of diet, its amount, and feeding schedule depend upon each crested gecko’s varying activity, species, age, and habits. Let’s first find out what can crested geckos eat.
What Can Crested Geckos Eat?
Crested Geckos can be fed commercial foods that have a complete balance of nutrients. There are many meal replacement powders available that can be used to sprinkle live insects before feeding them.
As a treat, you can also feed them live insects like crickets and mealworms. Other than that, a few fruits and vegetables like peach, apricot, and pumpkin can also be mixed into their diet.
The fact is, crested Gecko won’t eat just any human food, vegetable, or fruit. They are insectivorous and omnivorous reptiles. The central portion of their diet should consist of insect-based protein content.
The crested Gecko is going to drink nothing but water and eat nothing but a live insect-based diet. If you feed just any vegetables without doing proper research, you can end up with a sick crested gecko.
It is essential to find out what crested geckos eat in the wild first, then in captivity. Let’s learn that.
What Do Crested Geckos Eat In The Wild?
In The Wild, crested geckos are commonly preying on insects like spiders, grasshoppers, cricket, and even small rodents sometimes. With the use of their long sticky tongue, they’re able to snatch any insects flying around them within a second.
Most of the crested geckos do their best when eating like insects. Their lifespan will be affected due to the Predator concern, so I have also written a comprehensive guide on how long-crested geckos live in the wild and in captivity.
You can’t feed your crested gecko pre-packed food like dog food or cat food. Get live insects, and gut load them. Breeding live insects is a widespread habit of geckos breeders.
Other species of crested geckos can eat fruit and insects but only at a limited amount as an occasional treat.
Unlike leopard geckos, these Crested Geckos can feed on vegetables, plant matter, fruit mix, and insects. However, most of the crested gecko species tend to be insectivorous and omnivorous, meaning they will always look for insects to prey on rather than feed on fruits.
Some geckos like house geckos, leopard geckos, and flat-tailed geckos are considered insectivorous, whereas crested geckos are omnivorous or frugivorous. Now let’s learn what should crested geckos eat and drink.
What Should Crested Geckos Eat?
Provide them chlorine-free fresh and clean water all the time. Feed them live insects sprinkled with meal replacement powder available at the local store specially formulated for crested geckos. Only offer one insect at a time.
Remove all the uneaten live insects as they can hide, grow and bite spreading parasites in your Gecko. Other than meal replacement powder, you can also use calcium supplements to sprinkle insects. Veterinarians have also recommended supplementing your crested geckos at least once a week. Let’s learn how much do crested geckos eat.
How Much Do Crested Geckos Eat?
In the wild, crested geckos eat whenever they want to or get a chance to prey. In captivity, food depends upon each individual’s age, activity level, and species. Some geckos can eat a lot within a few seconds, while some don’t.
You should avoid putting many insects in his tank. A few of them can escape and hide. Those live insects also die and bring order. Once a day, you should offer one or two insects at a time.
How Often Do Crested Geckos Eat?
Crested geckos usually prey and eat insects at night time in the wild. Crested geckos eat 3-4 times a week at night. Give them live insects supplemented with meal replacement powder or calcium supplement 2-4 times weekly.
It is always recommended to feed them at night so that their sleep cycle and hunger don’t get disturbed. Juvenile and baby geckos will eat every day, whereas crested adult geckos are best at eating every other day.
It is essential to keep your Gecko’s tank clean and remove all uneaten food. Make sure to mist their tank regularly to maintain the humidity level they need. Here I have given an exciting answer to the question: do crested geckos need humidity? Now, it’s time to learn about how long can a crested gecko go without eating.
How Long Can A Crested Gecko Go Without Eating?
A crested gecko can go over 2-3 weeks without eating food and 3-5 days without having water. It is essential to get them checked at the nearest veterinarian if your crested geckos have gone without eating for at least two weeks.
A gecko can also refuse to eat for many reasons, discussed later in this article. The essential thing that all owners must know is that an adult crested gecko can only go without food for up to 3 weeks when freshwater is available.
Without food, they need water. Crested geckos will not survive without water for more than 3-5 days in the absence of food. Plus, Lizards like crested geckos are also prone to Dehydration, so even if your Gecko doesn’t eat, you should still provide them with fresh water every day.
Baby crested Gecko cannot go very long without food because they need nutrients more often to support their growth. Plus, feeding baby crested geckos with a diet limited in nutrients will stunt their growth as well.
I learned that bay crested geckos can go up to 4-5 days without food from my research. Juveniles and babies both need water every day. Let’s learn how to know if your crested Gecko is eating.
How To Tell If Your Crested Gecko Is Eating?
For beginners, it can be not easy to tell if their Gecko is eating or not. This confusion is widespread with crested geckos owners because these lizards don’t eat much. I would recommend you continually monitor your crested gecko weight using a digital scale.
The best way to check or tell if your crested Gecko is eating is by looking at their feces and lick marks. If you find your Gecko neglecting food, here is how you can get them to eat food.
How To Get Your Crested Gecko To Eat?
The first thing you should do to get your crested Gecko to eat is speak with your veterinarian. Many times, newly adopted crested geckos hatchlings need to be force-fed. Here is how you can get your Gecko to eat food.
- Use your thumb to push down your crested Gecko on their front to keep them in place.
- Get a syringe filled with the recommended diet or liquid diet your veterinarian offers.
- Now, gently push the syringe against your crested geckos’ lips until they open.
- Once they open, empty the syringe.
- Alternatively, you can fill the syringe with mashed food or liquid-like.
Crested Gecko Won T Eat?
Usually, crested geckos don’t eat much. Adult crested geckos should be fed once every two days. If your crested Gecko is not eating, there can be many reasons.
Let’s find out the factors that can contribute to your crested Gecko not eating their food. Most of the factors mentioned below can be resolved quickly by you, while others need professional help like – a visit to the vet.
7 Reasons Why Crested Geckos Not Eating
Crested geckos like to live alone, and if there is a new roommate in the tank, stress is possible. Stress can result in your crested Gecko not eating its food. Stress can cause your crested Gecko to lose their appetite.
Keeping male crested geckos together is not recommended because it can result in a territorial fight and fight over food.
Adding to that, you should avoid keeping geckos together with different ages. Bullying can also result in appetite loss and weight loss due to lack of eating. Bullying is possible when you keep juveniles and hatchlings together.
2. Enclosure Size
Keeping them in a tiny contained enclosure will stress them out as well. It is essential to give them extensive housing with lots of space. Here you can learn how much space do crested geckos need.
To learn how big of a tank they need, you can read this guide in which I have discussed what do size cage crested geckos need.
3. New Environment
If you have relocated your crested Gecko to a new environment, it can also result in appetite loss. Crested geckos will start eating in their new home at about 2-4 weeks of being there.
You can help your crestie to get more comfortable and feel safe in their new housing by creating a more natural environment inside their vivarium using a substrate, branches, and leaves.
Adding a place to hide will also make them comfortable. When you relocate them to a new enclosure, force-feeding is not a good idea. Leave some food in the food bowl with some fresh water in another bowl so that your geckos can eat whenever they want.
Here is a good guide on do crested geckos drink from a water bowl? If yes, How?
3. Poor Temperature And Thermal Gradient In Their Enclosure.
In the winter season, your crested geckos will need a heat source to keep their body warm. If the temperature inside their enclosure is unstable, it can lead to poor digestion and loss of appetite.
When the temperature drops, they lose their appetite, and when it is too hot, they often get stressed. Here you can learn about what temperature does a crested gecko need & how to maintain it.
Crested Gecko can also avoid eating when they are complete and has not digested it completely. Sometimes, substrates made from loose particles are ingested by crested geckos. Always offer them the food in the size that fits your Gecko’s mouth and gut quickly.
It is essential to check their feces as well and monitor how often do they poop. If you have kept a substrate made of loose particles, then replace it using paper towels. Avoid giving them any food or insects until they’re back to normal.
During impaction, the food usually gets trapped inside your crested Gecko’s intestine. At that moment, it is good to feed them fruits and vegetables like pumpkin and Apple high in fiber.
Poor humidity & Dehydration can also lead your crested Gecko to lose its appetite. It is essential to keep the moisture right inside the enclosure. Yes, you don’t need much lighting and heat source compared to other reptiles, but humidity is required.
If your crested geckos are preparing for brumation, they may stop eating entirely or eat less.
7. Health Issues
If your crested Gecko is suffering from a health issue like respiratory infection, parasites, internal parasites, metallic bone disease, or any other type, visit the veterinarian as soon as possible. Health issues and sickness can also lead to your crested geckos not wanting to eat.
Age. This is a prevalent factor that most of the owners forget. When the crested geckos are babies and juveniles, they eat a lot. When they are aged, their appetite decreases, making them want to eat only once in a couple of days.?
Do Crested Geckos Eat Their Shed?
Yes, crested geckos eat their shed to make up for the loss of vitamins and calcium levels they lost during shedding. They also tend to eat their shed to remove all the traces from the Predator.
When your crested Gecko is shedding, they are renewing its skink. During shedding, crested geckos can also stop eating as well if they ingest lots of their shed.
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