Crested gecko advice welcome!! Substrate? Heat Mat? - Reptile Forums

Go Back   Reptile Forums > Help and Chat > Lizards


  #1 (permalink)  
Old 14-05-2016, 04:41 PM
Hatchling
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Wales.
Posts: 38
Exclamation Crested gecko advice welcome!! Substrate? Heat Mat?


On my previous- and first- post, I had some very useful feedback given to me in preparation for getting my new crested gecko.
Since then I have received much more advice and undergone much more research.

However, some shops and reptile owners give very different advice, and I was keen to ask the forum; What substrate would you recommend for my crested gecko?

We are getting him/her next Saturday, and I am buying a heat mat for him/her -as advised by the reptile shop owner and other reptile owners as my house is very warm and an adequate temperature in the summer- so I'll only need to turn this on on cold days and in the winter.

I'm curious though, I've seen posts saying that substrate that hold moisture is a very good idea, such as eco earth mixed with repti bark or moss, even hydro balls, however I'm not sure how this will work with the heat mat? Does it have a special protection from substrate that holds moisture above it?

Apologies for the rambling, to clarify, what substrate do you recommend that will work with a heat mat, and are there any dangers of the heat mat not working well with a certain type of moisture holding substrate?

Many thanks, Georgia.
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 14-05-2016, 05:19 PM
Char D's Avatar
Super Citizen
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Wandsworth
Posts: 866
Default

Yay!! Cresties are awesome so its exciting that you are getting one soon

IMO a heat mat under the floor is pointless for a crestie - firstly, its probably not going to get through the substrate very well unless you have a really thin layer and secondly, crested geckos don't go on the floor...

From the sounds of it you were planning on putting the mat in the viv under the substrate? Heat mats aren't waterproof so don't put them inside the viv whatever you do! You put them outside - in a glass viv they work pretty well because the glass heats up nicely but stick them to the outside. Wooden vivs are not quite so good with heat mats (but they also aren't great with moisture so if you are going down that route you've probably got other issues to think about too...). I use sellotape around the edges and put them black-side towards the inside of the viv and sticky-side (paper still on) out.

In my tanks, I use a bioactive substrate (eco earth mixed with soil, orchid bark, dead leaves etc) but you can use eco earth or orchid bark on their own also, just not something dry like aspen.

I have the heat mat stuck to the side of the tank (on the outside!) where there is a bit of plant cover but no bark/anything else stuck to the glass so they have full access. I keep the mat on 24/7 over winter and have just turned it off because my house is sitting at a comfortable temperature for them now. They definitely appreciate the mat because they are quite often sitting on it or somewhere on the big plant in front of it

I hope that helps - if a photo would help let me know

EDIT: I found a photo on my phone that shows what I'm talking about - you can see the mat on the outside of the viv on the right hand side. I have a cork mosaic background on the rest of the walls but left this one free for the heat mat because the heat would not transfer through glass and cork bark to reach the geckos very well!


Last edited by Char D; 14-05-2016 at 05:24 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 14-05-2016, 07:32 PM
Hatchling
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Wales.
Posts: 38
Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by Char D View Post
Yay!! Cresties are awesome so its exciting that you are getting one soon

IMO a heat mat under the floor is pointless for a crestie - firstly, its probably not going to get through the substrate very well unless you have a really thin layer and secondly, crested geckos don't go on the floor...

From the sounds of it you were planning on putting the mat in the viv under the substrate? Heat mats aren't waterproof so don't put them inside the viv whatever you do! You put them outside - in a glass viv they work pretty well because the glass heats up nicely but stick them to the outside. Wooden vivs are not quite so good with heat mats (but they also aren't great with moisture so if you are going down that route you've probably got other issues to think about too...). I use sellotape around the edges and put them black-side towards the inside of the viv and sticky-side (paper still on) out.

In my tanks, I use a bioactive substrate (eco earth mixed with soil, orchid bark, dead leaves etc) but you can use eco earth or orchid bark on their own also, just not something dry like aspen.

I have the heat mat stuck to the side of the tank (on the outside!) where there is a bit of plant cover but no bark/anything else stuck to the glass so they have full access. I keep the mat on 24/7 over winter and have just turned it off because my house is sitting at a comfortable temperature for them now. They definitely appreciate the mat because they are quite often sitting on it or somewhere on the big plant in front of it

I hope that helps - if a photo would help let me know

EDIT: I found a photo on my phone that shows what I'm talking about - you can see the mat on the outside of the viv on the right hand side. I have a cork mosaic background on the rest of the walls but left this one free for the heat mat because the heat would not transfer through glass and cork bark to reach the geckos very well!

image

Thank you so so much!!! This has really helped me! I will put the heat mat- the word mat threw me off, I guess, made me think I had to put it under the substrate! - on the side of the tank just as you have, this is a wonderful help to me!!

I am very excited for next Saturday and will be updating with a photo, which will obviously include your suggestion of the heat mat placed on the side of the tank

Thanks again, Georgia.
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 16-05-2016, 01:18 PM
Arcadiajohn's Avatar
Premier Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: West sussex
Posts: 7,433
Default

Just as an Idea; EarthMix is a certified organic substrate that is heavily mineralised with volcanic rock dust, will support springtails from day one and has no, what I feel are potentially dangerous bits of orchid bark or stringy sphagnum moss bits in it.

It is a live substrate and will work with the lizard as part of Wild Re-creation.

I worked long and hard on the project and have had fantastic results with plants and animals of all types (reptile, amphibian and invert). I even keep my all of my hatchlings on it perfectly (plateds, pygmy chams and pictus geckos)

Just an idea.

John,
__________________
John Courteney-Smith MRSB.

Arcadia Reptile; Head of Science and Innovation

BRAND NEW BOOK out now. The Elements series; Part 1- FIRE, The Sun, its Use and Replication in Reptile Keeping

Find us on facebook under "Arcadia reptile"
www.arcadiareptile.com
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 16-05-2016, 02:01 PM
Hatchling
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Wales.
Posts: 38
Default

I will look into this it sounds wonderful, thank you
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 18-05-2016, 01:30 PM
Egg
Join Date: May 2016
Posts: 1
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Char D View Post
Yay!! Cresties are awesome so its exciting that you are getting one soon

IMO a heat mat under the floor is pointless for a crestie - firstly, its probably not going to get through the substrate very well unless you have a really thin layer and secondly, crested geckos don't go on the floor...

From the sounds of it you were planning on putting the mat in the viv under the substrate? Heat mats aren't waterproof so don't put them inside the viv whatever you do! You put them outside - in a glass viv they work pretty well because the glass heats up nicely but stick them to the outside. Wooden vivs are not quite so good with heat mats (but they also aren't great with moisture so if you are going down that route you've probably got other issues to think about too...). I use sellotape around the edges and put them black-side towards the inside of the viv and sticky-side (paper still on) out.

In my tanks, I use a bioactive substrate (eco earth mixed with soil, orchid bark, dead leaves etc) but you can use eco earth or orchid bark on their own also, just not something dry like aspen.

I have the heat mat stuck to the side of the tank (on the outside!) where there is a bit of plant cover but no bark/anything else stuck to the glass so they have full access. I keep the mat on 24/7 over winter and have just turned it off because my house is sitting at a comfortable temperature for them now. They definitely appreciate the mat because they are quite often sitting on it or somewhere on the big plant in front of it

I hope that helps - if a photo would help let me know

EDIT: I found a photo on my phone that shows what I'm talking about - you can see the mat on the outside of the viv on the right hand side. I have a cork mosaic background on the rest of the walls but left this one free for the heat mat because the heat would not transfer through glass and cork bark to reach the geckos very well!

image
Hi there, i am having similar concerns with my Crestie. I've had her since last September and I've just recently moved her into a new larger terrarium. She was in a 'RUB' up until last weekend. I've currently got the heat mat underneath the Terrarium and my digital thermostat is reading in the mid to late 60s (F). Should i place the mat on the side of the glass instead of the bottom? And (Stupid question) what do you use to stick it with?
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 19-05-2016, 08:15 PM
Super Regular
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 189
Default

We have a 60W red heat bulb above mesh in a reflector dome with an Arcadia canopy and a heat mat. If I knew then what I know now I would never have bought the mat it only keep the water in the aqua balls warm. We have a natural set up with live plants. Can recommend setting up your viv first and once the plants have grown in then buy your crestie. You will read on some of the forums that cresties don't need a UV lamp, they do. If you can't get an auto misting system buy a garden pump sprayer as your crestie will want a lot of humidity.
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 23-05-2016, 12:41 PM
Arcadiajohn's Avatar
Premier Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: West sussex
Posts: 7,433
Default

The new range of HabiStat high power mats come as standard with a sticky surface.

I have switched all mine over to these and they are stuck to the viv wall at the side of the basking spot.

there is a short video here showing the mat and it being fixed here in our PRK viv build section https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Y8iEI4fW3s

hope it helps,


Quote:
Originally Posted by Lomode84 View Post
Hi there, i am having similar concerns with my Crestie. I've had her since last September and I've just recently moved her into a new larger terrarium. She was in a 'RUB' up until last weekend. I've currently got the heat mat underneath the Terrarium and my digital thermostat is reading in the mid to late 60s (F). Should i place the mat on the side of the glass instead of the bottom? And (Stupid question) what do you use to stick it with?
__________________
John Courteney-Smith MRSB.

Arcadia Reptile; Head of Science and Innovation

BRAND NEW BOOK out now. The Elements series; Part 1- FIRE, The Sun, its Use and Replication in Reptile Keeping

Find us on facebook under "Arcadia reptile"
www.arcadiareptile.com
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 23-05-2016, 02:02 PM
Sky7ine's Avatar
Ultra Citizen
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Nottingham
Posts: 1,320
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lomode84 View Post
Hi there, i am having similar concerns with my Crestie. I've had her since last September and I've just recently moved her into a new larger terrarium. She was in a 'RUB' up until last weekend. I've currently got the heat mat underneath the Terrarium and my digital thermostat is reading in the mid to late 60s (F). Should i place the mat on the side of the glass instead of the bottom? And (Stupid question) what do you use to stick it with?
The mat wants to be on the side towards the top but bear in mind it won't alter your air temps as there surface heaters so will only provide a hotspot they can go to.
__________________
Breeders of high end designer crested geckos with amazing structure and traits.
Find us at http://www.crestiejungle.com/
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Crest...94060720743949
Twitter @crestiejungle
Email [email protected]
We now have Acrylic ledges available http://crestiejungle.com/t/acrylic-ledges
Reply With Quote
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 23-05-2016, 02:08 PM
Sky7ine's Avatar
Ultra Citizen
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Nottingham
Posts: 1,320
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arcadiajohn View Post
The new range of HabiStat high power mats come as standard with a sticky surface.

I have switched all mine over to these and they are stuck to the viv wall at the side of the basking spot.

there is a short video here showing the mat and it being fixed here in our PRK viv build section https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Y8iEI4fW3s

hope it helps,
What sort of temps are being achieved with the high powered mats john? I know with standard mats they just dont have enough of a punch to warm anything that's not within an inch of them which is why i've always preferred to use a ceramic.
__________________
Breeders of high end designer crested geckos with amazing structure and traits.
Find us at http://www.crestiejungle.com/
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Crest...94060720743949
Twitter @crestiejungle
Email [email protected]
We now have Acrylic ledges available http://crestiejungle.com/t/acrylic-ledges
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
crested gecko , heat mat , newbie , recommendations , substrate

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
NE England Male Crested Gecko and Full setup with bamboo features Stretfordchris Lizard Classifieds 17 17-06-2016 01:08 AM
May Stock List Horny Toad Coast to Coast Exotics 4 01-06-2016 04:51 PM
how can i confince my parents to let me get a crested gecko? datconsnakelover26 Lizards 17 11-05-2016 11:16 AM
Could a male chahoua gecko and a female crested gecko breed Crestedking15 Lizards 2 09-05-2016 01:06 PM
Heat and light setup for crested geckos lcpete Equipment & Supplies 11 04-05-2016 11:11 PM



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 11:16 AM.



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0
vBulletin Security provided by vBSecurity v2.2.2 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2020 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright © 2005 - 2011, Reptile Forums (RFUK™)