Help starting a leopard gecko terrarium

Kvandenplas

New Member
Messages
3
Hello all! And happy saturday to those that read it today.

i am currently amidst setting up what I hope will be the perfect environment for 2 female leopard geckos. Right now I have a 40 gallon terrarium with a basking & uvb light on respective sides of the tank - on a timer for 12 hours - and a moon light in the middle for the other 12.
I will attach a picture to show the set up - but I currently have 2 hiding spots on the cool side, 1 moist and one dry. And one spot in the basking area which I will put blonde sphagnum moss in.
2 bowls 1 for feeding and the other for water.
And 1 log to climb on. I know I still need plant decor inside of the terrarium to complete it.
Currently using a reptile floor mat because i plan on getting young leopard geckos. But I do have calcium sand set aside for when they are grown and healthy (i can return still so let me know if this is a bad idea.)
I did end up getting a heat pad that will cover the cool side and turn on only at night just to regulate temperature if need be. Though my moon light is 100W so i will regulate temperature tonight without a heat pad to see if it rests around 90.

any advice, warnings, or any information would be greatly appreciated! I have never owned a reptile and I would really like to make sure I have a healthy and comfortable environment for my new little buddies.
Thank you all in advance!!!
 

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acpart

Geck-cessories
Staff member
Messages
12,909
Location
Somerville, MA
Welcome! The enclosure looks pretty good. Here are a few suggestions:
--the lighting is likely for your benefit. As long as there is ambient light in the room so the geckos can tell the difference between night and day, they don't really need the lights. Some leopard geckos have been found to bask. In all honesty, without any special lights, some of my geckos prefer to sleep outside their hides and some inside. So if I had lights, would the ones who sleep outside anyway be basking? Who knows?

--I assume you have an under tank heat mat for the hot side that will be on 24/7 and that has a thermostat. If not, you need one. I don't feel there's need for another heater on the cool side, even during the day. As long as the ambient temperature is comfortable for humans (i.e. not below mid 60'sF), the geckos will be fine. If they get cold, they'll be in their warm hides. Too much heat from heaters and lights can overheat the air and dry out the enclosure leading to dehydrated geckos.

--the smooth rocks are really pretty and too large for the most part for a gecko to swallow. However, one of my geckos broke her jaw chomping on a rock that size from a small dish I put in there for them to dig in

--I recommend you return the calci-sand and, if you really want a more natural look consider either coco fiber or (my favorite) ceramic tile. I use lightly textured beige or white ceramic tiles that I get from the Home Improvement store flooring department.

Aliza
 

Kvandenplas

New Member
Messages
3
Welcome! The enclosure looks pretty good. Here are a few suggestions:
--the lighting is likely for your benefit. As long as there is ambient light in the room so the geckos can tell the difference between night and day, they don't really need the lights. Some leopard geckos have been found to bask. In all honesty, without any special lights, some of my geckos prefer to sleep outside their hides and some inside. So if I had lights, would the ones who sleep outside anyway be basking? Who knows?

--I assume you have an under tank heat mat for the hot side that will be on 24/7 and that has a thermostat. If not, you need one. I don't feel there's need for another heater on the cool side, even during the day. As long as the ambient temperature is comfortable for humans (i.e. not below mid 60'sF), the geckos will be fine. If they get cold, they'll be in their warm hides. Too much heat from heaters and lights can overheat the air and dry out the enclosure leading to dehydrated geckos.

--the smooth rocks are really pretty and too large for the most part for a gecko to swallow. However, one of my geckos broke her jaw chomping on a rock that size from a small dish I put in there for them to dig in

--I recommend you return the calci-sand and, if you really want a more natural look consider either coco fiber or (my favorite) ceramic tile. I use lightly textured beige or white ceramic tiles that I get from the Home Improvement store flooring department.

Aliza
Hey thank you for the advice. I completely revamped the cage and am using a bioactive ecosystem now. returned the calcium sand too. Got some live plants a lot of cover, moss the whole 9 yards. I have a heat pad on my hot side with a moist hide and on my cool side i have a dry hide and a moist hide. He is a bit skiddish at the moment but im hoping he acclimates well and i’ll start handling him little by little.
 

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