Gecko Care – breeding
It is known for geckos to breed well in captivity, this may be the route that you are looking forward to pursuing as a gecko owner. Most importantly you will require a completely separate home including the tank, heating equipment, rocks for cover etc, this will be used to house the new offspring in quarantine.
Geckos will almost always mate behind some kind of cover, so it is wise to add in some extra rocks or branches into the tank to provide more cover. The first signs you will normally notice is that the female has a swollen belly. A female gecko is able to lay several clutches of two eggs every year. They will lay and bury their eggs either under shelter or in between plastic plants or similar cover. You can attempt to encourage your female gecko to lay her eggs in the most suitable spot in the tank. It can help to create this spot for her, use a small plastic plant pot upturned with a hole cut in to provide a perfect place to lay her eggs. During this period you should check the tank very often, especially in the morning and evening times.
Once the eggs have been successfully laid they should then be transferred into an incubator to lessen the chances of desiccation. Geckos lay their eggs in clutches of two and dissimilar to bird eggs reptiles eggs should not be turned. Place them in a incubating medium, vermiculite is a good choice, then proceed to cover. You must provide airflow while keeping humidity at around 75% and maintain the temperature at around 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
Always keep checking the incubated eggs regularly, any eggs that you notice to be mouldy or shriveled must be removed to prevent contaminating the healthy eggs. There are times when you will notice the eggs are white and slightly indented, this is a sign that the egg needs higher humidity levels.
Young will usually hatch after around six to twelve weeks. The markings on the gecko will grow and change over time, young leopard geckos have yellow and black marks in bands that over time will break apart into the familiar markings that you see on adult geckos.
If possible, house the juveniles in separate small rearing containers. If you keep them all together communally then you must provide the tank with many more hiding places and water dishes. You will need to keep a sharp eye on any domineering individuals and once then begin to harass the other geckos they will need to be removed.
Spray a water mist into the tank throughout the day to promote good skin conditions and allow frequent shredding as the young start to grow. Provide them with plenty of fatty foods like well fed crickets and wax worms, some geckos also thrive on small spiders. All the food should be dusted with a vitamin and mineral supplement to give them the best possible start in life.
It is a fact that the incubating temperatures of reptile eggs will determine which sex the hatchling will be. At around 86 degrees Fahrenheit sexes are most likely to be mixed. At lower temperatures like 76 – 82 degrees Fahrenheit the majority are likely to be female. If the temperature is raised to 90 degrees Fahrenheit the eggs are likely to produce males.