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CENTRAL AMERICAN BANDED GECKO Caresheet
Common Name: Central American Banded Gecko
Scientific Name: Coleonyx mitratus
Origin: Central America
Size: 4-7" head to tail
Lifespan: 8-12 years
You will find many ways on the internet on "how to" take care of this animal. This care sheet is showing the way we found works best for us from our many years of experience of caring for this species.
In the wild, this nocturnal species, the Central American Banded Gecko, will spend its day in a ground burrow. At nightfall, it comes out to hunt for insects on the forest floor.
Young should be kept in smaller enclosures so they feel safe, such as an Exo Terra 12" x 12" x 12"or a 10 gallon aquarium with a screen top. Adults can be housed in an Exo Terra 18" x 18" x 12".
LIGHTING & TEMPERATURES
Central American Banded Geckos do not require UVB lighting. You'll want to turn any daylight off at night. They are comfortable with day temperatures of 84 to 88 degrees Fahrenheit on the warm side of the cage. The cool side should be between 75-79 degrees F. Use a good quality temperature gauge, like Zoo Meds digital temp gauge or Exo Terras Thermometer.
The easiest way to increase the heat in your enclosure is with a Reptile heat bulb or an Exo terra or Zoo Med heat pad. You always want part of the tank to be cooler so your gecko can regulate his own body temperature by choosing what temperature area to hang out in. It's ok if the temp drops to the mid 70s at night.
Misting the enclosure twice a day will usually provide enough moisture for your geckos. They like to lick water off the glass and foliage in the enclosure. Yet, also have a water bowl for them to use if they choose. Exo Terra's reptile fountain provides bubbling water, Flukers rock dish is a nice naturalistic non-porous water bowl, or you can use a Magnetic water/feeding ledge. If you live in the Southwestern United States where it's very dry--or in the Northern part of the United States where winter is very dry--you may have to mist more frequently.
We also suggest giving your baby gecko bugs every day and adults every other day. They enjoy mealworms or crickets. For extra calcium and vitamins, dust the bugs with supplements such as Repashy Calcium Plus every feeding. Or use Zoo Med Calcium without d3, every feeding for young and 2-3 x a week for adults. Use Zoo med multivitamin with D3 only 1x a week. The day you use the multivitamin do not use the calcium.
Central American Banded Geckos have a defense mechanism where they can naturally drop their tails if grabbed by the tail or if they are trying to get away from a predator. So handle with care.
Central American Banded Geckos make wonderful pets but are more for the experienced pet owner rather than the novice.