One crested gecko is a fascinating pet and a lot of fun to keep, so will keeping two or more crested geckos together in one enclosure double the fun?
Crested geckos can be kept in pairs or small groups, provided only females are kept together or there are multiple females to one male. Multiple male crested geckos should never be kept in one enclosure, although it may be possible to avoid fighting in an extremely large enclosure when no females are present.
Here’s what you need to know about keeping crested geckos in pairs or groups, including the advantages and disadvantages of cohabitation and some tips for keeping crested geckos in pairs successfully.
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What Works When Keeping Crested Geckos in Pairs
Two or More Crested Gecko Females Work Well Together
Crested geckos seem to do just fine when multiple females are kept together. When kept in groups of three, it appears that one individual becomes dominant and the other two are submissive to her.
Many individual keepers find that their pairs of female crested geckos seem to choose to occupy space near one another, although it isn’t clear whether this is because they prefer each other’s company or because they are seeking out the same environmental requirements at the same times.
Either way, females don’t seem to be likely to fight when kept in groups of two or more.
One Male and Several Female Crested Geckos can Coexist
A pair of crested geckos with one male and one female will likely result in problems. The male is very likely to continuously chase the female around the enclosure attempting to court her.
This can result in exhaustion for the female and fights between the male and female.
However, when the male’s amorous attentions are spread across several females, each individual female has time to recover. This may be a good way to keep your crested geckos if you would like to breed them.
Can You Keep Baby Crested Geckos Together?
Until crested geckos are sexually mature, they may be able to be housed safely in groups without any trouble.
Crested geckos should only be kept together when they are young if they are approximately the same size, and they should only cohabitate until they are old enough to reproduce, at which point fighting is likely to occur between males.
Here are some tips about raising young Crested Geckos once they are separated:
The Right Tank Sizes For Multiple Crested Geckos
|Crested Gecko Combination||Minimum Tank Size|
|2 females||30 gallons|
|3 females||45 gallons|
|4 females||60 gallons|
|5 females||75 gallons|
|6 females||90 gallons|
|3 females and 1 male||75 gallons|
|4 females and 1 male||90 gallons|
|5 females and 1 male||120 gallons|
|2 males||500 + gallons if at all possible|
Advantages of Keeping Crested Geckos in Pairs or Larger Groups
- You get to observe multiple crested geckos
- You only need to maintain one enclosure
- Food that is not eaten by one gecko may be consumed by another, reducing waste
- You may get crested gecko babies
- Since little is known about wild crested gecko behavior, cohabitation may represent a more natural lifestyle
Disadvantages of Keeping Crested Geckos in Pairs or Larger Groups
- Geckos may compete with one another for food
- Dominant geckos may hoard resources like water droplets and heat sources
- There may be injuries due to fighting
- Stress may be increased for all geckos in the enclosure, reducing natural behavior and making disease more likely
- It can be harder to monitor the health of individual geckos by observing droppings
- Breeding may happen even if you do not intend it if you have mistaken a male for a female
How to Successfully Keep Crested Geckos in Pairs
Whether you want to keep a pair or a group of female crested geckos or you want to have multiple females with one male, here are some tips to help you successfully keep multiple crested geckos in one enclosure:
Create The Largest Enclosure You Can to Keep Multiple Crested Geckos Happy
The bigger the enclosure, the happier your crested geckos are likely to be. Large enclosures give crested geckos room to establish their own space and get out of one another’s way. Very large enclosures are especially important if there is a male in the group.
Create Multiple Basking and Shedding Areas to Avoid Competition Between Crested Geckos
Crested geckos may hoard basking areas and shedding caves if there is only one available, which may mean that some crested geckos don’t get as much warmth or humidity as they need.
Therefore, it’s a good idea to create at least two or three basking areas and shedding areas separated by vegetation to allow individual geckos to have their own private areas to soak up the warmth or shed in privacy.
Build a Bioactive Enclosure to Reduce Cleanup for Crested Gecko Pairs or Groups
Maintaining a bioactive enclosure is easier for most keepers under any circumstances, but when multiple geckos are being kept, the advantages skyrocket.
In a bioactive enclosure, insects and natural bacterial processes will consume droppings and leftover food, which keeps the enclosure much cleaner over time. This is more important when there’s more leftover food, more droppings, more shed skin, etc.
Weigh Crested Geckos Regularly to Monitor Their Health When They are Kept in Groups
Since it can be harder to monitor your geckos’ health by looking at the droppings when you keep multiple geckos in an enclosure, it is even more important to weigh your geckos and check their calcium deposits regularly to be sure that they are thriving.
Provide Plenty of Food to Avoid Competition for Food Between Crested Geckos
Crested geckos may compete over food, so it’s a good idea to make sure there is plenty available.
Add slightly more fruit and/or packaged food than you think your geckos will eat and consider providing several trays with insects so geckos can eat what they want. Be sure to remove any uneaten food within several hours.
Do Crested Geckos Get Lonely?
Crested geckos do not appear to require other geckos in their enclosure. Rare observations of crested geckos in the wild frequently find them alone.
Geckos appear to live long lives, be very healthy, and seemed happy when kept alone. When solitary geckos are introduced to a breeding partner, they generally breed readily.
However, all that said, we cannot get into the gecko’s mind to see how they feel about solitude. Because we don’t know much about how crested geckos behave in the wild, it is possible that keeping them in groups is a more natural way to maintain them than keeping them alone.
It is up to you as an individual keeper to weigh the benefits and risks of keeping multiple geckos against keeping only one per enclosure.
Use Your Own Judgment About Keeping Crested Geckos in Pairs
While crested geckos seem to be perfectly happy and do very well when kept alone, many keepers also find that their geckos seem to thrive when kept in pairs or small groups. In the end, it is up to your own judgment about which way of keeping your crested geckos is best.