White lined gecko care guide
White lined or skunk gecko care guidelines
Natural habitat, appearance and temperment
White lined geckos are native to Indonesia, where it is hot and humid.
They are very closely related to Tokay geckos although not as heavy or aggressive generally. Adults reach 8 – 10 inches in length and can live from 6 to 10 years.
These geckos can vary in colour from dark brown to pale tan and sometimes a greenish colour. They all have two white lines starting on either side of their heads and meeting at the neck to then running down the spine to the base of the tail. The tail is usually striped with broad bands of white.
These geckos can be handled but be warned they are very fast and can be skittish especially if not used to being handled.
Housing males together should be avoided as they can fight to the death, although they can be housed in large groups of mixed sexes in very large environments.
Vivarium size and material
Housing needs to be around 24 inches long by 16 inches deep and 24 inches high, for 2 – 3 geckos. As they come from areas very high in humidity for a good part of the year, then they need high humidity in captive care too. Also these geckos have incredibly sticky toe pads and do very well on glass. Hence suggested materials for a vivarium would be glass with one side as a screen, fibre glass with a screen door, or if wood is used then use several coats of yacht varnish to prevent it rotting with the humidity.
Substrates and cage décor
Suggested substrates include coco fibre, peat, rainforest bark, cypruss mulch, newspaper and kitchen towel. The latter being easiest to keep clean and first 3 will help to maintain humidity.
They will need plenty of branches, live or plastic plants, rocks, hides cork bark etc to provide hiding and climbing places.
Temperature and Humidity.
These geckos prefer temperatures in the mid 80s (F) but are quite hardy and do tolerate down to the 70s and up to the low 90s. Humidity needs to be around 65% to 75% or higher at times – they do experience very high humidity in the rainy season where they originate from. Ensure heating is controlled using a thermostat to avoid over heating and obtain correct temperatures, also use a guard otherwise your gecko will end up burning its feet.
There is no evidence to show that these nocturnal geckos do definitely need UV lighting, but there is no harm providing them with what they receive in the wild. Uv lighting may actually prevent metabolic bone disease, as uv lighting actually helps reptiles to metabolise calcium.
As these geckos generally come out at night you may wish to use some form of low lighting such as a red light, to observe them in the evenings. Use of a guard is also advised if the light form gets hot, to prevent the geckos from burning their feet etc.
Feeding and water
White lined geckos eat soft bodied invertebrates such as flies, crickets, moths hoppers, wax worms, mealworms, silk worms, cockroaches, spiders etc. it is good to provide variety in their diet. Make sure you gut load the chosen food items in order the offer your gecko with a highly nutritional meal, also dust them with a high quality calcium, vitamin D and multivitamin powder once or twice weekly. These geckos also appreciate purreed fruit ( not citrus) with honey mixed in, such as peach and banana.
Fresh water should be offered daily aswell as misting the vivarium 1 – 3 times daily. Treat the water with a conditioner that will remove chlorine and chloramines as these can prove harmful to reptiles.
General care and maintenance points
Spot clean your vivarium daily and give it a thorough clean out every 1 month or so depending on how well it is spot cleaned, and which substrate you are using. Use a commercially available product available in reptile shops or a 5% bleach soloution – ensure the enclosure is thoroughly rinsed afterwards as cleansing products may be harmful to your gecko.
Take care to wash your hands following handling, feeding or cleansing as reptiles and amphibians do rarely carry diseases which can be passed on to humans ( zoonoses) such as salmonella, good hygiene is all that is required to prevent this.
Please ensure you do not have alcohol, perfumes, aftershave or detergents on your hands as these can be harmful to your gecko.
Written by Angi Nelson
Whilst every care has been taken in the preparation of this care guide, I acknowledge that differences of opinion do exist within the reptile world. Therefore I do encourage you do read around this topic further and discuss it with known keepers and breeders.
If you feel that I have made any errors, please feel free to contact me and I will endeavour to research the subject at hand further.
General Care and Maintenance of Tokay Geckos and Related Species (The Herpetocultural Library) (Paperback)
by Sean McKeown, Jim Zaworski
My RedBubble portfolio
Runner up in international Pet Photographer of the Year 2011, 2012 & 2013 with SWPP
Amphibian image of the year 2013 - The Reptile Report
do they eat repashy? would possibly like to get a few of these.
Ptenopus garrulus garrulus
Mine absolutely loves dragon fruit.
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