post #1 of 9
10/6/09 at 9:54am
I had a bad feeling I'd see a particle substrate before I clicked. How old is the gecko, btw?
Talk (or show this post) to your mother about getting the gecko off that.. whatever it is? Crushed shells or something? Leopard geckos can be bad about eating their substrate, they're not a terribly bright gecko and when they lunged and grabbed food often they don't realize they've missed if they accidentally grab something else. I have one who will grab the side of his food dish occasionally and think he has a worm...
There are alternatives that aren't expensive and are much much easier to clean. A lot of keepers simply use paper towel. Toss it out when soiled and put fresh in, it doesn't get any simpler. Those who want an easy to clean surface that looks nice will use textured ceramic tiles - just lay them down on the bottom of the cage, they transfer and spread out heat very well from an under tank heater. They also wipe clean and can be removed and sanitized.
A third easy solution is Repti-carpet. This is a tightly woven felt type carpet that doesn't have anything to come loose from it and potentially get ingested. Though I've read that some people have lizards that will get their "teeth" stuck in it occasionally.
I hope you mother fixes the cage. A lot of old and bad info is out there in old books and relayed by petstore workers who don't really know anything about them - I suspect that's the case here. Leos can be great pets, they may not interact with you much but their hardiness and ability to take to and even enjoy some handling makes up for it.
If you, or your mother, has any questions do feel free to ask. I've been keeping geckos, including leos, for nearly 10 years now.
It looks like repti-bark to me.
Same stuff I keep my spider on...but spiders aren't known for ingesting their substrate
I used to have two leos,who I miss greatly.I had to turn them over to a rescue,when food sources became scarce around me!
I used coco fiber when I had mine and never had a problem with that stuff.I was going to switch to tile eventually,but then had to give them away.Another thing you don't want to use,sand.
I couldn't tell from the picture quality. Red lights always make for bad pics since it messes with a lot of cameras - I see it often, so it's not anything you done.
I asked about the gecko's age because if it's under 7 months or so, it looks ok. If older it's a bit underweight and either needs better food or deworming. Are you certain it's a boy? I suspect a female from the shape of the head as sometimes they don't get as bulky (depends on bloodlines, though). Either that or an immature or malnourished male.
The repti bark is still bad - Leopard geckos come from areas like Pakistan, obviously not a wooded area. Where they live it's hard packed soil, rock, and sparse plants. When you use something like bark or coco fiber you not only risk death by impaction (starvation), there's also the risk of too much humidity in the entire cage. That can lead to URI in a desert species. The solution to this is a safe substrate and the use of a humid hide to provide a small area of higher humidity needed when shedding.