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Geckos 101: Gargoyle Gecko Care
What are Gargoyle Geckos and where do they come from?
Gargoyle geckos, or Rhacodactylus auriculatus, are a species native to only the southern end of the island of New Caledonia. They are cousins of the very popular Crest gecko, and require very similar care. They are a medium-large gecko species that are semi-arboreal. Gargoyle geckos are quite a robust species. They can reach lengths of 8-9 inches and weigh between 45-60+ grams. Being a very docile animal, they are easily handled and are slightly less jumpy than other species of gecko. Gargoyle geckos have all of the attributes that make an excellent pet, even for beginners, and are growing in popularity.
This set-up will work well for Gargoyle geckos as well.
How should I house my Gargoyle Gecko?
Gargs require relatively simple housing and will thrive as long as their basic needs are met. These basic needs revolve around 5 things:
- Proper temperature and humidity
- Appropriate caging and space
- Climbing material
Proper temperature and humidity are two of the most important components to creating the proper enclosure for you Gargoyle. Unlike other species of reptiles, Gargoyle geckos can successfully be kept at room temperature. Your Gargoyle's cage should be between 65F to 80F. Any temperature lower or higher for prolonged periods can cause stress, and ultimately, death. Gargoyles require moderate humidity. They benefit from regular misting of their enclosure. Misting raises the humidity, helps them shed, and also gives them an opportunity to drink the water droplets that are formed. Just important as heat and humidity, is you're actually cage.
Young Gargoyle geckos and smaller adults can be kept in a 10 gallon aquarium. A 20 gallon tank is better suited for adults. Gargoyles can be a fairly aggressive species with each other. Due to their aggression towards each other, they are best kept individually unless you are trying to breed. Gargoyle geckos can be kept in anything from glass tanks, specially made reptiles cages, and even plastic storage tubs. Since they are an arboreal species, enclosure height is very important.
Gargoyle geckos require plenty of climbing material in their cage. They also require areas where the can seek privacy. Gargoyle geckos are a nocturnal and secretive species and fake foliage can be a great way to create both climbing and hiding areas.
What should I feed my Gargoyle Gecko?
In the wild Gargoyle geckos eat fallen fruit, and very rarely, insects. The best diet you can offer your Gargoyle is a MRP, or Meal Replacement Powder. There are many excellent MRP's available for Gargoyle owners. A quick search on the internet will give you options to help you decide which MRP is best for your gecko. Gargoyle geckos will eat the same diets as Crested geckos. The amount of food to offer to your Gargoyle depends on their size and age, as well as the type of food you are providing. You can supplement your Gargoyle gecko's MRP diet with mashed fruits and gutloaded insects. Unlike Crested geckos, Gargoyle aren't as keen to eat insects, but may eat large insects occasionally. Besides feed, be sure your Gargoyle gecko has access to fresh water at all times. For young Gargoyles, make sure that they can easily get out of the water bowl and food bowl if they accidentally fall in.
Gargoyle geckos are awesome little creatures! They are suitable for nearly every experience level, and are quite personable and even goofy. Gargoyle geckos are fairly easy to care for, and are quickly becoming more popular. Continue gaining knowledge of this wonderful species by researching articles, joining forums, and getting in contact with experienced breeders.