Why we house our geckos separately

On Facebook and forums, I’ve seen a lot of people asking if they can house their geckos together. In general, I’m inclined to always answer, “no”. Many times, someone will respond with a response similar to the following: “I’ve been doing it for years and all my hatchlings are fine.” or  “I’m a bigger breeder than you, so I know more than you, and I say it’s fine.” or “It’s always okay to do with babies and females.” or “Sure, just make sure you only have one male in the lot.”

Everyone is entitled to their opinions, myself included, so here is my response to the above statements.

 

“I’ve been doing it for years and all my hatchlings are fine.”

One thing we should all remember is that most people asking this question online are beginners, not experienced reptile keepers. I’ve read numerous posts about hatchlings biting each others limbs and tails. Just do a google search and I’m sure you’ll find some. I like to house my animals separately because it’s a guarantee that they are safe. I know each one is eating. I know if they are going to the bathroom. There is zero chance that they can bully each other. To me, the risks are too high. It takes a fraction of a second for a fight to happen, one that could potentially damage your pet for the rest of his/her life. Housing hatchlings in bins costs about $5.00 per bin. (See our tutorial here: http://www.firedupgeckos.com/do-it-yourself/hatchling-bin/ In my opinion, there is no reason to house them together.

 

“I’m a bigger breeder than you, so I know more than you, and I say it’s fine.”

See my response to the statement above. Maybe you have been doing it successfully for years, but are you okay with a brand new gecko owner keeping them together? I’m not.

 

“It’s always okay to do with babies and females.”

Again, I disagree. Some babies bully each other, and I’ve heard that with proper monitoring, it can be dealt with. Are you willing to give that advice to someone who has never owned a gecko before? As with females, I have housed them together successfully, but there is always the potential for them to fight. I feel that saying it’s always okay, 100% of the time, is inaccurate. I prefer to say, “adult, 35g+ females of similar size may be kept in the same enclosure. However, they may fight, so one should be prepared to house separately if need be.” In my opinion, that is far better advice to give to a first time gecko owner.

 

“Sure, just make sure you only have one male in the lot.”

This one baffles me. Are you assuming that this random person online is ready to breed their geckos? Most new gecko owners have no idea how readily crested geckos mate. They are also unaware that one mating can equal a lot of babies. Of course, that male won’t be fighting other males if he’s the only one in the tank, but he’ll be shacking up with all the ladies. I have one male that I can only keep in with a female for a week. He’s so aggressive that he’ll mate her to exhaustion. I almost found that out the hard way. Luckily, I saw how exhausted she was before going away for the weekend and was able to separate, sauna, and properly feed her before I left. She was literally laying nearly lifeless in the dirt when I found her. (My roommate also cares for crested geckos so I did leave her in good hands, rest assured.) This female made a full recovery and has given me many great eggs, but only because I knew to check her before I left. In my opinion, this is worst answer to give a beginner out there.

 

Once again, these are my opinions and how I care for my animals. However, if you’re a new gecko owner and would like a second opinion, I want to recommend the Pangea Gecko forums (http://www.pangeareptile.com/forums/index.php) and not Facebook. Facebook has a lot of people who will very confidently tell someone the wrong answer, while the people of the Pangea forums have never once let me down in my quest for gecko knowledge.

If these rambling of mine have offended you. I apologize, and we must agree to disagree.

There are 4 comments left Go To Comment

  1. Laura /

    As a breeder of cresteds for over 10 years, I couldn’t agree more. I have seen absolutely horrible things happen to juveniles when they are housed together–fine one minute, dead the next. Why take the risk with your beloved pets? If you can’t house them all separately, it’s best to rehome some or get more cages. Tubs are inexpensive, there’s no excuse!

  2. Elise /

    Thank you for this post. I totally agree. I have housed together before but it is rare that I find a pair or young geckos I trust to stay together. I watch them like a hawk & separate at the first sign of bullying. I currently have all of mine housed individually. I just love them too much to risk anything happening to them.

    1. Elise /

      And that was oddly written. They are all housed individually right now because I don’t have any right no that I trust enough to put together.

  3. rebel reptiles and feeders /

    i don’t house together unless paired for the obvious reason lol that way i know whose eating and if someones sick or gets sick the others wont idk i don’t agree with it lol but there r more reasons then that but im well you wrote this very well

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