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terrarium for crested gecko

Best Terrarium For Crested Gecko

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Crested geckos make the best reptile pets. They are native to New Caledonia where they live on one of the off-shore islands, covered in the tropical rain forest. These geckos make the best pets, being kept in beautiful natural looking rain forest enclosures which are functional and aid to ensure your gecko has a happy and healthy life.

The crested gecko is a very popular pet reptile. They are very easy to feed, they are affordable to keep and they have their own personalities, which make them appealing to enthusiasts of all ages. These geckos are great for breeders and reptile keepers who want natural looking enclosures complete with decorations and live plants.

It's important that you select the right enclosure size and set it up as naturally as possible to ensure your crested gecko thrives in the long run.

In a Hurry? Here's Our Top Picks...

Our Pick

Exo Terra AllGlass Terrarium - 18 x 18 x 24

  • 18'' x 18'' x 24'' (34 gallon)
  • Dual front doors for free accessing your pet
  • Closable inlets for wire management
  • Waterproof bottom

Zoo Med Naturalistic Terrarium 12” x 12” x 18”

  • 12 x 12 x 18 (11 gallon)
  • Single lockable front door
  • Inlets for wires and tubing management

REPTI ZOO Mini Reptile Glass Terrarium 8” x 8” x 12”

  • 8 x 8 x 12 (3 gallon)
  • Single front door with lockable latch
  • Screen top ventilation
  • Only suitable for baby crested gecko

Crested Gecko Tank Size

Crested geckos love to climb, which is why any enclosure you consider needs to have high walls to reduce the risk of your pet gecko escaping. Baby crested geckos benefit when housed in small glass terrariums, which should be smaller than a 10 gallon. Ideally this will have a screen lid, which allows for ventilation and reduces the risk of escape.

Baby crested gecko tank size is debatable

Baby crested gecko tank size is debatable among people in the community. Some people find their crested geckos have difficulties in finding food or water source in large enclosures. Therefore, they recommend small cages for baby crested geckos. However, some baby crested geckos are fine in 20-gallon cages or more.

A single adult crested gecko, on the other hand, do well when housed in at least a 10-gallon enclosure complete with a screen lid. The larger the tank, the better your display will be. Glass is the preferred material as it's easy to clean and keep light. Glass is excellent when it comes to creating the right humidity levels, ensuring your gecko is happy and healthy at all times.

If you start with a small terrarium for your baby crested gecko, then you want to keep an eye on their weight, which will help you determine when to upgrade your enclosure to ensure the best health. A gecko in a tank too small can become stressed. A good rule of thumb is as follows:

Crested gecko

Tank size

Under 5 grams

Under 10 gallon

Over 5 grams

Over 10 gallon

Terrarium Material

Glass is definitely the preferred material. It provides full viewing and is easy to clean. It also helps in maintaining accurate humidity levels. Glass terrariums come with a choice of features, you must ensure you choose a tall tank with a screen lid, this allows ample ventilation while reducing the risk of your crested gecko climbing out of the cage.

Crested Gecko Tank Setup

There are a few things you are going to need when it comes to setting up your crested gecko habitat. It's important that you provide a natural habitat that helps your gecko feel comfortable, safe and at home. This will ensure you have a happy and healthy gecko with no health issues as a result of a poorly designed cage.

Always have a water bowl in the tank. This can be done in conjunction with misting. A water bowl will allow for good humidity levels. You will want to check humidity levels daily to ensure your gecko is receiving the humidity it needs to make shedding easier and make your gecko more comfortable.

What You Will Need

You will need the following to ensure you set up the best enclosure to make your gecko feel safe and comfortable. These include:

  • A tall enclosure to eliminate the risk of escape
  • Effective lighting
  • Proper heating
  • Substrate
  • Feeding ledges and bowls
  • Plants, moss
  • Hide

Effective Lighting

Glass enclosures remain a preferred choice over wood and other materials, due to the fact it is able to maintain humidity levels. With your tank selected, you need to focus on lighting. UVB lighting can be included, though this a controversial subject with some enthusiasts believing UVB isn't needed, while others firmly believe in UVB. Your gecko comes from the rain forests, where they have access to UVB. While the argument is still in full swing, providing UVB through the branches an provide a safe, natural and secure habitat where your gecko can thrive.

Quality Substrate

Lighting should be offered for twelve hours each day. It's recommended to use a timer to ensure that your gecko has access to the right amount of daylight. Substrate is an important decision to make, you can use paper towel or newspaper, which many crested geckos opt for. The problem is that with the moisture in the cage, they can become messy. Eco earth is the best option, especially if you intend to use real plants to complete your tank design.

Thermometers and Hydrometers

By now you should have your cage placed where you want it with your lighting and UVB lights. You will need to place your substrate and plants, while placing your thermometer on the tank to ensure you stay at the desired temperature of 78 to 82ºF (25 to 28ºC). You will want a hydrometer to ensure you keep the tank at the desired humidity levels of seventy percent.

Hides

When placing your hide, remember that crested geckos are climbers, they don't spend much time on the ground, so you will want to create a hide that is safe and higher up off the ground, a place where your gecko can get some quiet time and rest. Placing a hide on the enclosure surface will probably just be ignored.

Feeding Ledge

A feeding ledge needs to be placed where your gecko can eat with confidence without having to venture to the cage surface. Feeding ledges are a great addition to your setup. It provides a place for a feeding bowl and water bowl with the flexibility that you can place it anywhere in your tank with ease.

Crested Gecko Tank Cleaning

It is imperative that you clean and disinfect your crested gecko tank on a regular basis. This avoids unwelcome parasites and ensures your gecko remains healthy. Cleaning is not a nightmare process, in fact it's relatively quick and easy once you know what you are doing.

The first step is to find somewhere safe to house your gecko while you clean the cage. You are then going to want to remove everything, place it in a plastic bucket or drum, so you can clean it later.

Ensure all substrate is removed and disposed of. If you are using eco earth bricks, you will want to start getting those ready, mixing the brick with water and allowing it to soak up the water to provide beautiful earth to complete your rain forest design.

Wash out the inside of the vivarium using a reptile disinfectant. Always make sure you rinse and dry thoroughly. You are going to want to use the same disinfectant to clean food and water bowls, fake plants and hides. Always ensure everything has been rinsed thoroughly before placing it back in the tank.

Once you are happy, you can start by adding your substrate and build your vivarium up with plants, feeding ledge and anything else you have in there before adding your gecko.

Humidity Requirements

Crested geckos come from the rain forests where they are used to high humidity levels. You must invest in a hydrometer, which will enable you to ensure your humidity levels are met with confidence. Humidity levels for a crested gecko can be between sixty to eighty percent.

There are numerous ways to ensure you maintain your humidity levels, starting by selecting a glass terrarium and using water spray to mist the tank from time to time.

In addition to this, you want to achieve the best humidity levels by selecting the right substrate. Avoid wood shavings. With the moisture within the tank, wood shavings can get too wet and over time turn to mold. Eco Earth is the safety substrate when looking to achieve the best humidity levels.

Best Terrarium For Crested Gecko

Exo Terra AllGlass Terrarium - 18 x 18 x 24

This is a large 18” x 18” x 24” (33 gallons) terrarium, suitable for crested geckos, other reptiles and amphibians. It comes with front window ventilation, a waterproof base with the raised bottom. The dual doors come with a lock to prevent escape with closable inlets for neat wiring.

This glass cage allows for easy access with dual doors which can be opened together or individually. These have a specially designed lock which reduces the risk of children opening the tank when you are not there. 

The waterproof base is raised, so you can place a substrate heater for any reptiles or amphibians that spent time on the ground. An under tank heater is not suitable for the crested gecko that will very seldom set foot on the ground.

This glass cage comes with a natural looking rock background which can start off your rain forest design with ease. It leaves three glass sides open, where you can watch and enjoy the character of your crested gecko with ease.

Pros

  • Dual doors for easy access
  • Lockable doors to reduce children and pets gaining access
  • Waterproof base
  • Raised base
  • Natural looking rock background
  • Made of glass

Cons

  • Gecko can get stuck behind the rock background
  • Mesh lid very weak with reports of easy breaking

Zoo Med Naturalistic Terrarium 12” x 12” x 18”

This is a 12” x 12” x 18” terrarium that is 11 gallons, ideal for an adult crested gecko. The tank comes complete with a stainless steel screen lid, which allows UVA and UVB penetration. The lockable door is full front glass with snap closure. This cage offers the best in ventilation with a front and top ventilation option along with closable inlets for up to six power cords.

This terrarium is a great option with its full sized front glass door that comes complete with snap closure. The stainless steel screen reduces the risk of escape and corrosion. It also allows for a lamp.

Pros

  • Lockable door (Lock not included)
  • Front and top ventilation
  • Full size glass front door for easy access, feeding and misting
  • Cord slots to keep tank neat
  • Stainless steel screen lid to reduce risk of escape and corrosion

Cons

  • These tanks have a bad reputation of breaking in transit

REPTI ZOO Mini Reptile Glass Terrarium 8” x 8” x 12”

The REPTI ZOO Mini Reptile Glass Terrarium is an 8” x 8” x 12” terrarium and is suitable for a baby crested gecko. This terrarium offers the convenience of a front opening door complete with latch. The front door makes it easy to gain access, feed and mist your gecko. The tank offers escape proof locks to reduce the risk of escape with a screen top, which not only improves UVB penetration and ventilation but reduces the risk of escape. Remember crested geckos are avid climbers.

This is a durable terrarium which is lightweight and easy to move. The screen lid offers excellent ventilation while allowing excellent UVB and lighting penetration.

Pros

  • Front opening door for easy access, misting, cleaning and feeding
  • Escape proof lock
  • Screen top to improve ventilation and reduce the risk of your gecko escaping
  • Lightweight design makes moving it easy

Cons

  • Small size suitable for baby crested gecko only and will need to be upgraded at a later stage.
  • Top screen can be difficult to slide, which can make cleaning and setting up difficult
  • Screen top made of plastic, can melt and warp from the heat of lighting, which gives a place for your gecko to escape

Best Terrarium For Crested Gecko In Summary

The crested gecko has it's very own personality which is a delight to watch. The habitat you provide will play a role in how happy and healthy your gecko is.

We recommend the REPTI ZOO Mini Reptile Glass Terrarium 8” x 8” x 12” for a baby crested gecko. This will need to be upgraded to a larger terrarium once your gecko starts to grow.

We also recommend both the Zoo Med Naturalistic Terrarium 12” x 12” x 18” and the Exo Terra AllGlass Terrarium 18” x 18” x 24” for adult crested geckos, providing ample space to roam.

If you plan to create the ultimate habitat for your crested gecko with a bioactive enclosure, then the Exo Terra AllGlass Terrarium 18” x 18” x 24” is the best choice to keep your gecko happy moving forward.

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