Are you looking to spice up your crested geckos diet? Well, look no further because we have all the answers you need to create a healthy, staple diet for your crested gecko. We know that sometimes meal prep can be hard to keep appetising. But there are many healthy benefits for your crested gecko which come from a varied diet. So let’s take a closer look at ‘What does a crested gecko eat’.
Cresties are brilliant little reptiles which can live solely on premix powder foods. Crested gecko owners all over the world have been doing this for many years, with results which show their pets live a happy, long life. But we also know that sometimes crested geckos can be stubborn when it comes to meal time. That’s why we believe that a varied diet, which consists of a mixture of foods, is best for your crestie.
We are true believers that live foods are key for a happy lifestyle for all reptiles and crested geckos are no acceptation. In the wild crested geckos commonly live off live foods, so why should they only be offered premix powder foods as pets? This really doesn’t make sense to us, so here’s what we believe to be best for your crested gecko.
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What Does A Pet Crested Gecko Eat?
Crested geckos are becoming more and more common reptiles to own as pets. They have long been in the shadow of leopard geckos, however their active lifestyle makes them great pets for those who have to time to watch and enjoy. Crested geckos like to be handled as well which makes them great pets for all ages. Having such an active lifestyle means crested geckos need a varied diet to keep them in the best possible health.
Could you imagine only eating the same food your entire life? It would get pretty boring after a while, and this is no different for reptiles. So here is a range of healthy alternatives for your crested gecko, which you can alternate from time to time. These foods should only be given in moderation as some may contain high levels of fats and proteins which may become harmful to their health, but we’ll delve further into that as we go. So what does a pet crested gecko eat?
Crickets and Locust
Crickets and Locust are commonly fed to mature crested geckos as they full of goodness. They are both high in proteins and fibres which aids the digestion process. Crickets can be found in most reptile stores and online stores also.
Crickets and Locust will stimulate your geckos hunting mode more than worms will, so this will simulate its natural actions in the wild. However a down side to this is that crickets like to hide and they can be very noisy at night if not eaten.
Nutritional Information: Moisture 69.07%, Fat 6.01%, Protein 21.32%, Fibre 3.2%.
Mealworms are another great choice of food for your crested gecko and is probably the top choice for many gecko owners. They come in all shapes and sizes so can be fed to your gecko from an early age. As long as the size of the mealworm is correct in comparison to the size of your gecko, all should be fine.
Mealworms are available to buy at any reptile store or online and can even be delivered to your door for extra convenience.
Nutritional Information: Moisture 62.44%, Fat 12.72%, Protein 20.27%, Fibre 1.73%.
Now, Dubia Roaches would probably be the ideal source of food for your crested gecko. However, they are quite hard to come by. Many stores won’t stock Dubia roaches, so you would have to search online and also purchase them online too.
They are more expensive than mealworms and crickets also which may put some people off, but there are some pro’s to these roaches.
They are very high in protein and calcium. So you wouldn’t need to dust the foods as much with calcium powder. They also have little to no smell, unlike both crickets and mealworms which do have a slight stench to them. And finally, they are easy to breed. So if you ever chose to breed them, you could have a hefty bill from food purchases each week.
Nutritional Information: Moisture 65.6%, Fat 7.2%, Protein 23.4%, Fibre 2.9%.
Silk worms are a great source of protein for your crested gecko and one which we would recommend once of twice a week. These worms can be found in most reptile stores, however if not then they are available to buy online. We recommend only once or twice a week as their fat levels are quite high, which you’ll not want to over do.
Nutritional Information: Moisture 76%, Fat 10%, Protein 64%, Calcium 34mg/100g
Wax-worms are a great food for crested geckos which are struggling to put on weight, which can happen from time to time with individuals. If not, then wax worms should only be offered once a week as they may begin to put on extra weight which can lead to other health related issues.
Nutritional Information: Moisture 61%, Fat 20%, Protein 16%, Calcium 13mg/100g
Lobster and Discoid Roaches
If you have a little bit more spare money available then you can also treat your crested gecko to Lobster and Discoid roaches. Lobster can be purchased from any fish monger or food store, and this will be fine to feed your reptile. However it’s recommended that you wait to see if it finishes the food as you’ll need to remove any leftover straight away. Discoid roaches are harder to get hold of, normally only being able to be purchased only.
Arcadia EarthPro Gold and FruityInsect Gold
So it’s worth mentioning the FruityInsect Gold Premix as this can be the primary source of food in your crested geckos diet. This mixture is a blend of everything insect eating reptile need to thrive. They mainly come in ‘Jelly Pots’ however these can become very expensive if used every day.
To ensure nutrition levels are kept high, these Jelly Pots are crammed full with whole fruits, real honey, Bee pollen, Insects and Plants. This mixture should be refrigerated until solid, and only fed to your crested gecko in this state.
Crested geckos do love this type of food and can live happy lives only eating this premix. However we do encourage to feed your gecko live foods as this closely resembles the foods which they would usually eat in the wild.
Nutritional Information: Vitamin B1, B2, B6, B12, Vitamin K, Nicotinic 80mg/kg, Pantothenic 40mg/kg, Folic acid 5mg/kg, Biotin 1000mcg/kg.
What Does A Crested Gecko Eat In The Wild?
Like many small reptiles, the creased gecko hunts for food at night. Night time brings a slight sense of security from predatory threats as they usually hunt during the day. Since their rediscovery back in 1994, crested geckos have mainly been bred in captivity for pets. They were found on a block of islands around New Caledonia, located off the North East coast of Australia. Crested geckos are a semi-arboreal specie of reptile, which means they live and survive both on the ground, and in trees. They love to climb and commonly seek shelter off the ground floor for better protection.
For this reason crested geckos have the best choice of food available to them. They have a variety of choices to choose from, which is why awe suggest switching up their meal choices as pets. So what do crested geckos eat in the wild?
There are four main food choices which crested geckos eat in the wild, which are ideally located both on the ground floor and in trees. These choices are, Crickets, Moths, Spiders and Fallen Fruits and Berries. We can also split these foods up into categories such as, Foods from the floor, and Food from the trees.
Food from the floor
The easiest meal is the fallen fruits and berries, which when pipe, fall from the trees and onto the ground floor where crested geckos can easily pick at them without having to exerting much energy. Fruits are crucial to a varied diet as the offer high levels of vitamins and minerals, which may not be present in live foods such as insects.
However, over feeding your crested gecko with fruits and berries can cause an upset stomach. So it’s best to feed these in moderation with other substantial protein foods. We would recommend offering fruits and berries twice a week in conjunction with other foods. If you exceed this amount then your crested gecko may have watery stools, which could cause dehydration and other health related issues.
The second meal a crested gecko can get from the ground floor is crickets, or similar sized insects. Crickets become very lively at night and colonise in the hundreds, so crested geckos are never short of a meal from crickets. The high amount of crickets at night makes them the most accessible insect to hunt when it gets dark. Crickets make a lot of noise too, so they’re not very hard for a crested gecko to locate either.
Food from the trees
Crested geckos commonly sleep in trees, so its no wonder it makes sense for them to hunt in the trees too. In fact, it’s kind of genius as many insects also use the trees as protection from other predators and environmental factors. This means that foods come to the crested geckos instead of them having to go out and hunt for them.
Moths and Spiders are the main source of foods which are numerously available up trees. Spiders use trees to cast their webs in hope to catch flies, but this means they become an easy target for crested geckos. Moths also use trees to nest in, therefore are always in the firing line from hunting crested geckos. Although moths seem to find better hiding spots than spiders, they are still no match for a hungry gecko, who can get into the hardest of hiding spots.
What Fruit Does A Crested Gecko Eat?
Okay, so we’ve highlighted all the foods which you can offer your crested gecko as an alternative, but not all fruits are safe to offer as a meal. The list of acceptable fruits which you could offer your crested gecko could be very long, so we’ve listed a ‘Top Six’ which you will always be able to buy from your local grocer or convenient store.
The best ‘Top Six’ fruits which we believe are best for crested geckos are Mangos, Pears, Bananas, Watermelons, Peaches and Strawberries.
As you may be able to tell, these six fruits are all very sweet. This is because many gecko species have a sweet tooth. But also because these fruits have relatively low acidity levels. Other fruits such as oranges, apples, pineapples, limes, lemons, grapes and blueberries are all very acidic. These can fine in small amounts, but the likeliness is that your crested gecko won’t even be interested in them. Instead we have chosen fruits which we know crested geckos enjoy, which you can buy from most stores.
Mangos are high in Vitamin C and Calcium which is ideal for a crested gecko, however they also offer great levels of Vitamin A, E and K for a good all rounded fruit. You should offer 5 or 6 small cubes of mango up to twice a week in moderation and conjunction with other protein foods.
Pears are another great choice of fruit for your crested gecko. They’re are high in natural fibres which helps to keep the digestive system moving efficiently. They also contain Iron which other fruits don’t offer which is another added extra mineral for your crested gecko. You should only offer this to your gecko once a week.
Banana’s are high in Sugars and Potassium, which again you don’t get from many other fruits. Potassium isn’t necessary in a crested gecko diet, however its not going to hurt in small amount. They also incorporate Vitamin A, C, Calcium and a small amount of Iron. This fruit should be offer once a week.
Watermelon offers a large amount of Vitamin A and Vitamin C, which is great for your crested gecko. However watermelons do have a lot more natural water in them which could cause an upset stomach and watery stools. So be careful with this fruit, and only offer this once a week or once every two weeks.
Peaches contain higher levels of Carbohydrates and Fats which is ideal for crested geckos which are slightly under weight. These fruits help gecko to gain weight in conjunction with protein foods such as Crickets and Dubia roaches.
Strawberries contain the highest levels of Vitamin C out of all these fruits and are also the sweetest, so these should go down very well as a treat for your crested gecko. You should however try to remove the small pips from the outside skin as these could cause your gecko to choke. Strawberries should be offered one or twice a week.
Well there you have it, everything you need to know on ‘What does a crested gecko eat’. Remember that it is always best to feed your crested gecko a diet which is as close to its natural diet as possible. Live food such as crickets, roaches and worms are perfect for your gecko.
If you chose to offer them fruits, make sure you cut them up into suitable sizes for your crested gecko to chew. Also that you remove these fruits once your gecko is finished as they will deteriorate very quickly in a gecko enclosure.
We hope you have enjoyed reading up on everything you need to know on the subject ‘What does a crested gecko eat’ and how you can now find some great alternative meals.
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