Are you wondering where house Geckos may hide out in your house? Well, this is something many people consider or wonder. Let me help you and provide some answers.
Where Do House Geckos Hide? You can typically find house geckos hiding in houses that have insect infestations. Often hide in crevices, under sinks, behind cupboards, bookshelves, etc. Wherever you can find insects such as cockroaches or bed bugs, you will find them.
Now you know where they can hide out, let us look at a few more places they may hide, why some people like them in their house, what damage they can cause in your house and more.
House Geckos (Hemidactylus Frenatus) are found in Southern Asia. Also known as:
Some people say yes for the following reasons:
Other people say that they are an asset because:
One thing I would say, regarding pest control, they are not perfect for this. The reality is, they can only eat so much before they get full, and insects multiply a fast rate.
Before I explain where they lay their eggs, let me say one thing. It’s important to control the number of common house lizards in your house. If not you may start by trying to battle an infect infestation, and then left with dealing with a lizard problem, are you with me?
The best way to control this is to find out where they lay their eggs. I’m going to explain some common places where you can find them.
Here are the common areas:
Basements are perfect because they are very dark, plenty of places to hide and usually damp. Perfect for them to lay their eggs.
You can expect a female lizard to lay up to 20 eggs per batch. In the mating season, you can expect two or three batches of this size.
Cabinets and sinks are ideal to lay their eggs. Sinks, in particular, are always in the vicinity of flowing water, meaning that there is usually a level of moisture within this location. In addition to this, it’s usually dark. Another perfect location for them to lay their eggs.
This is another ideal location for them. They are typically in areas of the house which do not have much activity. Meaning that the eggs are safe and not likely to be disturbed by anyone. This is why it’s a good idea to look out for these places.
You can expect a number of different issues with a gecko rampant in your house. One common issue is with them getting caught behind electrical devices.
For example, especially in hot countries, an air conditioning unit. Problem is, they tend to get caught, trapped and die from electrocution. Typically leads to the electrical device malfunctioning and high repair costs.
This largely depends on what country or state you live in. For example, if you live in Australia, then you cannot just try to eradicate these lizards. Why? because technically they are protected. Meaning that you could get into some serious trouble if you try and take the law into your own hands.
Therefore, the best way to do this, in these areas and stay within the law is to try a different angle. Instead, you can try to get rid of their food sources instead.
The best way to do this is to eradicate the insects and bugs that they usually come to your house to feed on. So, you need to deal with the root cause of the problem, are you with me?
Yes, they will fight. Especially if they find a very good location with food. Adult geckos will fight over territory without hesitation.
The male Gecko, in particular, can be quite fierce. Especially around the breeding season. During this time they compete for the attention of females.
They make a very distinctive “chuck chuck” sound. Which is an indication of them stamping their authority and claiming their territory.
Most geckos are nocturnal. Meaning they are active in the night and usually hide in the day. The common house lizard is no exception to this and is definitely a nocturnal lizard.
It often hides in crevices, cupboards or many different areas (as discussed earlier). So if you want to see one active you need to wait until night time.
Yes, as a pet they can be fine. As long as you treat them well they are actually pretty good pets. Also ideal for beginners or children.
However, if you have children and you want to keep them around this lizard. Make sure that you supervise them.
Their tails are very sensitive and children have a habit of grabbing hold of things. This can provoke the lizard and make it feel uncomfortable. Obviously, if a lizard feels under threat it may even bite.
They can go without food for at least 2 weeks, maybe even up to 3 weeks. However, this is largely based on the assumption that they have access to water.
If they did not have any food or water, they will not last that long. In fact, they won’t last that long at all. Because water is one of their most important needs.
They hate the smell of eggs. Use this as a deterrent. However, do not wash the eggs out because this will get rid of some of the smell which will repel the lizard. Instead, gently dry them off or wipe them down then put them around the house.
However, you need to understand that lizards do not like the smell of eggs, it is also quite unpleasant for us humans. So you have to make a decision if you’re willing to put up with the smell yourself.
Garlic Emits a certain enzyme which causes a smell which lizards do not like. If you want to repel the lizard it is a good idea to put some cloves of garlic around your house to repel them. Especially in areas where you know they hang out.
Alternatively, you could actually create a garlic juice spray and spray down some areas where they hang out.
The Asian house lizard is known to be able to go in the water. In fact, it can move across the water at a pretty fast speed. When you look at it, it seems that is doing a half running-half swimming motion to keep itself Afloat.
The best Basilisk Lizard is another lizard which is good in the water. It Moves its feet at a rapid speed in the water which avoids it from sinking.
On average House lizards can live for five years this is based on their entire lifespan. Obviously, they will move around a lot. You should not expect them to live in your house for that long if you have them as an unwanted guest.
If you are like me, you may be thinking how can a lizard survive in the desert and what do they even eat? Well, let me explain this to you now.
What do lizards eat in the desert? Depending on their species, they can eat insects, small animals, and even other lizards, even including their own species. If they eat other lizards, this is typically a smaller lizard that they can easily pick on.
Now you know what they eat at a high level. Let me explain how they get their water, what predators they have in the desert, how they survive and more.
There are many different types of predators that a lizard has. In the wild, especially in the desert, this includes many types of birds such as hawks, Eagles, owls and other birds of prey.
Snakes are another known Predators for lizards. Finally, lizards are even known to eat other lizards. You usually find that a larger lizard will prey on a smaller lizard, even if they are the same species.
Looks like one of our Gidgee Skinks (Egernia stokesii) is ready for the weekend! Are you? We are open daily from 9.30am to 5pm 😊 .
.#AliceSpringsReptileCentre #GidgeeSkink #WeekendReady #ReptileCentreAliceSprings #ReptilesOfAustralia #Reptiles #ReptilesOfInsta… pic.twitter.com/3ejZaSFOnN
— Reptile Centre (@ReptileCentreNT) January 4, 2019
When the desert reaches its maximum heat for the day you’ll often find that lizards will hide away from the sun to regulate their temperature. They have an amazing technique to control their breathing and heart rate in this period of inactivity to conserve energy.
Lizards have to be careful in extreme heat because they are cold-blooded animals. Meaning they have to regulate their temperature by moving away from direct sunlight. If they don’t avoid the direct sunlight they could burn to death.
The majority of the water comes from the food that they consume. You may be thinking to yourself, how is that even possible?
This is because they have a very unique system of retaining as much water as possible from their food and not expelling it through their body. As humans we are the opposite, we expel a lot of water through common daily activities such as sweating and urinating.
However, when a lizard urinates the majority of it is urates. Meaning a salt particle of uric acid. As opposed to a liquid form that we as humans have.
This is similar to Birds however birds do not do this as well as lizards. This is evident in the watery white paste that you may have seen soiling your car windscreen, remember?
Also, their scaly body is designed to retain as much moisture as possible and not to expel it through this skin.
This process of refining its urine and retaining as much water as possible is quite taxing on their energy levels. But it is beneficial to them, especially in the desert where water is scarce.
Based on this efficient system that they have, they can easily consume a diet of crickets, for example, and retain enough moisture from the cricket to sustain themselves.
However, if they are given the option to consume more water through other means they will still take that option. It’s just that they have a natural survival Instinct to be able to get by in the absence of freely available water.
Yes, they do. Lizards are split up into two main groups:
To put this into context, let me give you an example of a couple of lizards that fit into these categories.
The Famen lizard is an example of an omnivore. It will eat a combination of fruits vegetables and insects and small animals. Then you have the Chuckwalla Lizard. This lizard is a herbivore, meaning it will only consume plants and vegetation.
Different lizard species have different time periods that they can live without consuming food. For example, you can expect a Bearded Dragon to last a few weeks without consuming food and still to survive.
You may be thinking to yourself, how is this even possible? how can they live for this long without consuming food? The answer is, in most cases, they store food in their tails. For example the leopard gecko, it stores water and fat reserves in its fat tail.
It does this instinctively because in the wild it is not guaranteed a meal every single day. So it stores this fat as a clever survival tactic.
Lizards need water as much as humans do. It’s one of the most important parts of their diet and cannot be avoided. Without water, they won’t last long at all. Food, yes, they can last a bit longer. But, water is a big problem if they don’t have it.
In captivity, you should be supplying fresh water to your lizard on a daily basis. You should also be cleaning the water container on a daily basis as well. Followed by a deeper weekly clean. Which would be a more thorough clean. For example, using soapy water or detergent to properly clean out the water dish.
However, some common sense is required. Obviously, if the water dish has some obvious debris inside of it, for example, feces, it will need to be swapped out immediately. regardless if it’s less than 24 hours before the last change.
Earlier I did mention details about a water dish, however, it is important to understand that not every lizard species expects water to be fed to them in a water dish. This is not expected from, for example, a green anole or a chameleon.
These lizards prefer to have their water taken from droplets on leaves and branches within their enclosure. These droplets are formed by the lizard keeper “misting”, which is basically spraying water into the enclosure on a regular basis.
When I say regular basis, I mean is at least once or twice a day. This includes spraying the water onto the leaves and branches of the enclosure as well as the sides of the enclosure.
You should expect your lizard to Lap up the water droplets after you have done a good job of misting the enclosure.
For other types of lizards, that prefer to have it in the water dish, you should provide a dish big enough for them to submerge their body in. However, not deep enough for them to drown. Remember, lizards are not usually good swimmers.
Having a large enough dish is important because they often use some of this water around their body to help them with shedding, which is a regular thing for them.
Here is another tip for you, if you want to provide a constant stream of dripping water, for example for a green anole or a chameleon. You can actually use a simple paper cup. Pierce a hole into the top of the cup and then put some water in it. Then place the cup on top of the enclosure.
Once it is there, depending on the size of the hole, which will affect the rate of the water, you should notice it dripping consistently into the enclosure. However, to avoid any unnecessary mess in the enclosure, it is advised to have another cup beneath it to mop up any excess water which isn’t being consumed by the lizard.
There are quite a few species that live in the desert, but here is a list:
If you have ever had bed bugs or have them now, you will do anything to get rid of them. But are lizards the answer? That is the question that I will be answering today.
Do lizards eat bed bugs? Yes, they do bed bugs. Especially the house lizards (geckos). However, they are not a feasible pest control solution. This is because there is only so much bed bugs or other house pests that they can consume before they are full. And Bed bugs multiply at an alarming rate.
Now that you know that lizards will eat bed bugs, let us delve a bit deeper. What if you want to offer your pet lizard bed bugs, is this a good idea? what can happen to them? What other pests can they eat besides bed bugs? Let’s answer these questions now.
— Niagara Bed Bugs (@NiagaraBedBugs) November 24, 2017
Bedbugs are a type of tiny insect that typically feeds off human blood in the night. They are called bed bugs because they are usually found infesting people’s mattresses and causing irritation and bites during the night.
The bite can cause a number of different health-related issues primarily rashes, blisters or other skin related problems.
The two main species that are known for bed bugs is the well known common bug (Cimex lectularius) or Cimex Hemipterus.
These bed bugs are quite hard to detect because they are really small. Typical size can be between 1 & 7 mm in length. As you can imagine they are very hard to see with the naked eye. Especially if you’re sleeping.
They get around by jumping onto clothing, pets or other household items. They spread by laying eggs and multiplying. If you find them in your house, it’s not necessary due to bad hygiene, it could be just because you live in a highly populated urban area.
In reality, lizards will eat until their bellies are full and then roll over and leave the rest. You may be thinking to yourself, well if that’s the case I’ll simply have multiple lizards to deal with them. You could do this, but then you will have an infestation of lizards spreading droppings and mess all over your place. So for that reason, it is not advisable.
If your lizard is left to fend for itself in your house primarily for pest control there is not so much of a concern. However, if you regard your lizard as a pet, then that is different.
If that is the case, it is not a good idea to feed them bed bugs. Reason being, recent research carried out in Vancouver has revealed that they can carry organisms that can lead to bacterial infections.
You may be happy to know that house lizards do not just eat bed bugs, they will also feed on other pests that may be lurking in your home.
In reality, as you can imagine, it is unlikely that a small house lizard can deal with a big rat or mouse for that matter. However, they are more than capable of dealing with their offspring. In particular their babies or newborns.
Lizards tend to hang out in dark murky places where rats and mice like to rare their young. This is an opportunity for them to snack on these young mice known as “pinkies” which are an ideal size for them.
They tend to hide in areas where they know the Offspring will be and wait for the mother to disappear before launching their attack.
House lizards like to hang out in cool damp and dark areas which are ideal for cockroaches. This is ideal for them because house lizards love to snack on cockroaches.
Centipedes are definitely eaten by house lizards. Their wriggly movement attracts their attention and they will snap them up without any hesitation. You can expect to see them looking for centipedes.
An example of places that you may find these centipedes within a house is, for example, within wooden fixtures such as wood beams. Especially if the wood is old or worn with some signs of wood rot. Lizards will scale the walls to eat them.
Swarmers are an adult version of termites with wings. You can often find them flying in colonies, hence the reason they earned their name “swarmers”. If lizards are given an opportunity they will gladly lap up these delicious treats.
Mosquitoes are one of their favorite foods. They are notorious for sticking out their tongues and devouring them.
If you are still considering using a Lizard as pest control, to deal with your insect infestation. Let me warn you about a couple of things.
Using a house gecko as pest control, as discussed earlier, can’t really help you. But in addition to this, there are additional undesirable effects, for example, you will start to find lizard droppings hidden behind hard to find areas that could take months to discover.
For example, you could find feces behind an old kitchen cupboard which is rarely moved. This hidden gem could be located right at the back, hard to find.
In fact, you may not notice this stinker for months or longer. Maybe you will only notice when other related problems occur. Such as flies swarming around the feces and adding to your pest problem.
You may also notice house geckos will get everywhere, even in your prized electronic devices, which could end up getting damaged.
There have been reports of a particular homeowner who found a lizard electrocuted and stuck within their printer causing it to malfunction and costing them because they had to replace it.
What do house geckos eat in captivity? You will find that house geckos eat a lot of insects in captivity, such as waxworms, silkworms, and cockroaches.
To keep them happy you will need to provide these insects 5 to 6 times a week. In addition to this, you need to make sure that you provide some meal supplementation. Such as a vitamin supplement. This supplement can be quite simply dusted onto their food so that they consume it without even noticing.
However, when you offer them these insects be careful of the sizing. A general rule is, it should be no bigger than the distance between each of their eyes. This is so that they can avoid being choked.
One word of warning though, do not allow uneaten crickets to roam around inside of their enclosure. The problem is, there is a good chance that the crickets will start to bite and nibble on your house gecko and cause problems.
When it comes to their consumption of water, it is important to mist their enclosure on a daily basis. This is because they will not take water from a dish. They expect to lick the water droplets from tree branches and leaves.
Do house lizards eat spiders? Yes, they do they definitely eat spiders. However, they go one step further. they even control the spider’s food sources. As well as eating the spiders, amongst other things, you may even find them eating up the lava of wasps. This helps to control the spider’s population indirectly because they typically eat them.
Do Lizards carry salmonella? Yes, they do, such as the common house lizard. This is quite a common issue and can be spread from casual contact or even through their feces. This can even be spread from contact from the environment that they use, such as the water provided in their enclosure in captivity. For this reason, it is advisable to keep young children away from them, or at minimum, always supervised, because they have bad habits of putting things in their mouth.
If you are interested in Veiled Chameleons, in particular where they come from, you are in the right place. Let me get straight to it.
Where are veiled chameleons from? The Veiled Chameleon (Chamaeleo calyptratus) is a species of the Chameleon and native to Saudi Arabia and Yemen. It is also known as the conehead or Yemen Chameleon
Now that you know where the Veiled Chameleon is from. Let me explain more about them. Such as if they can be kept as pets in captivity, what they eat, what supplementation they need, lighting requirements and more.
Yes, it can and it is also quite a popular pet. For that reason, in this article, I’m going to give you some tips and details of the best practices to keep them.
Veiled Chameleons mainly eat crickets in captivity. However, if you are going to be feeding them you need to make sure that you get the sizing correct. A general rule for most lizards is to only feed them food which is no longer than the distance between each of their eyes. The reason for this is to avoid choking.
When they are young, such as baby or juvenile, is important to feed them on a regular basis. When I say on a regular basis, I mean at least once or twice a day. However, as they get older you can reduce this frequency to every other day.
In addition to this, because they do not have other sources of nutrients and calcium, you will need to supplement their food. This is done by providing a calcium and vitamin supplement. This can easily be achieved by dusting the insects with the supplement.
For females, this is even more important. Because there is a good chance that they will breed during their lifetime.
To improve their nutrition, it is a good idea to also gut-load the insects that you feed them. This is done by simply pre-feeding the insects, such as crickets, with nutritional food.
The ideal food for this is:
Veiled chameleons are arboreal, which means that they live most of their lives in trees. Therefore, they do not expect to see water handed to them a water dish.
What they are used to is getting their water supply from the dew off plant leaves. To emulate this in captivity, you have to mist the leaves in their enclosure.
To achieve this simply water spray the enclosure (Misting) at least a couple of times a day to make sure that the leaves and plants are well covered.
Another option is to provide a dripping system. This dripping system will allow you to automate the misting of the leaves. Using one of these gizmos, it will drop in water on a regular basis to make sure that the leaves stay misted.
Generally speaking, you shouldn’t really provide a glass terrarium for a veiled chameleon. This is mainly because of their need for ventilation.
Ideally, you should provide them with a mesh enclosure. Ideally made from PVC. You can avoid the metal or fiberglass versions PVC is adequate.
Whatever you choose just make sure that it is a vertical enclosure. This is because chameleons really like to climb. So, a vertical enclosure is an absolute must.
The ideal size of this enclosure is 36x24x36, but obviously the larger (or taller) you can get it the better.
You can also consider providing an outdoor enclosure for your chameleon. However, if you do this, you need to make sure that they do not get overheated. So you will need to regulate the temperature to ensure that this is not a problem for them.
Regular cleaning and maintenance of the enclosure are very important. If you neglect to do this, you could notice bacteria and mold growing in the enclosure. This can lead to unfortunate health conditions.
To help make cleaning and maintenance easier it is recommended to use newspaper or paper towel substrate.
However, you should avoid using wood chips or any other particle-based substrate. This is because they could easily be ingested by your chameleon and cause impaction or any other related health conditions.
To keep them happy make sure that you have a good supply of plants and climbing branches. Just make sure that they are non-toxic. You can also consider artificial plants & vines if you do not want to invest in natural ones.
In addition to this make sure that there is a good selection of branches at different levels. As discussed earlier, the chameleons like to climb.
Chameleons require two forms of lighting:
It is important to provide a heat bulb in a basking area with incandescent fixtures. However, you should avoid heat rocks or tape. Or any other similar heating items.
As discussed earlier they also need UVB lighting. This is important because it helps them absorb calcium and avoid health conditions such as Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD), caused by calcium deficiency.
If you are in the position to provide natural sunlight then this is obviously preferred but in captivity, this is usually not possible.
One thing to note, these UVB lighting tubes cannot penetrate glass. So, you need to position the UVB lighting at the top of the enclosure with the nearest perch approximately 6 to 8 inches away.
To maintain these UVB bulbs you need to make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and change them on a regular basis. This is because they can be deceiving at times. Even if they still show a form of light, it may not be providing UVB rays, which is the whole purpose of the tube.
It is also important to provide gradient lighting inside the enclosure
This means that you have a contrast of a cool area and a basking area in the ambient area you would best to provide the temperature of approximately 72 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
In the basking area, you need to provide a temperature of at least 85 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit. This is best produced by having a heating lamp approximately 6 to 8 inches away from a Perch in the enclosure.
How Big do Veiled Chameleons Get? The adult male can grow up to 2 feet in length. The female is typically smaller at 18 inches. Their hatchlings are usually anywhere from 3 to 4 inches in length. They are one of the biggest Chameleon species.
Is a Veiled Chameleon Similar to Piebald? Yes, a Piebald Chameleon is effectively the same as a Veiled Chameleon but has a different color scheme. They eat the same food and have the same requirements.
Do Chameleons recognize their owners? Yes, they do. However, there are some things that effect this. This can be achieved in as little as one week.
But this will vary a lot depending on how you bond with them. How you treat them also makes a big difference in how they respond to you. Ultimately if they see you as a threat, then they will not. But if they associate you with a positive part of their day, such as feeding them, they will love you.
If you own or thinking of keeping a Chinese Water Dragon maybe you are interested to know if you could save some effort or money and check if they will eat dead instead of living crickets. Let me explain.
Will Chinese water dragons eat dead crickets? Yes, they will definitely eat dead crickets. However, this is not normal behavior. In fact, you will find that this is quite rare. Reason being, the movement of live insects usually triggers them to attack and eat them.
Now that you know that they can eat dead crickets let look at what else you can feed them, what foods to avoid to keep them happy, how often you should feed them, if their specific requirements, such as UVB lights that Water Dragons need are too advanced for beginers and much more.
The Chinese water dragon (Physignathus Cocincinus) is a species of the Agamid. It is a native of China and the South East of Asia. it is also known as the following:
— Myfanwy (@JMyfanwy1) December 3, 2017
They are omnivores, meaning they will eat primarily insects but can also eat vegetables and fruit. You will find the majority of their diet will consist of insects such as the following:
You will find online guides or books that say fruit and vegetables are a required part of their diet. In fact, this is true. They will be expected to have at least 10 to 15% of their diet consisting of fruits and vegetables.
However, in practice, this can be quite different. You will find that they are quite picky. In some cases, they will completely reject anything else apart from insects.
You will have to take this on a case-by-case basis but in general, you can expect them to prefer eating insects. You might get lucky, if you see it that way, and your one may enjoy eating fruit or veg.
Once they are at the juvenile age, up until it’s an adult, it is important to keep their calcium and nutrient levels at a good level.
To achieve this it is a good idea to feed them some of the following:
It is advised to offer them this at least two to three times a week to maintain a good nutritional profile.
It is advised to feed them every other day or worst case two to three times a week. However, some keepers have found that feeding them daily works well.
These keepers argue that feeding them every other day or less is not healthy, especially when they are hatchlings or juveniles. It is important to keep them strong and healthy, hence the reason some of these people keepers swear by daily feeding.
Hatchlings eat pretty much the same diet as their adult counterparts. With the exception of the larger items, such as pinkie or fuzzy mice.
They will usually have mealworms or other insects broken up into two or three pieces. This is because they are very young and important to give them smaller portion sizes so that they can handle it. This will avoid choking.
You may find from time to time that your water dragon starts to refuse to eat or may start to become picky. Unfortunately, this is one of the challenges of owning a Chinese Water Dragon.
Majority of the time this could be down to boredom due to lack of variety in their diet. To get around this, it is a good idea to rotate their food items. This is so they are not always eating the same thing over and over again.
The mistake that some lizard keepers make is feeding them one or two food items over and over again, which will start to make them feel bored.
The simplest solution is to rotate their food. For example, on day one offer him some crickets. On day two some mealworms. And on day 3 you mix it up and provide some earthworms.
Continue with that rotation. Try to rotate with as many items as possible. Ideally, you would have 7 or more different items. So you can offer a longer rotation cycle, are you with me?
I understand in practice this could be more expensive because you’re having to buy different items. But, just stretch it as far as your budget can allow.
Whilst they are very beautiful and interesting lizards, in my opinion, they are not the best choice for a beginner.
The reason I say this is because, as discussed earlier, they can be quite picky when it comes to food items.
In addition to this, they have very specific requirements (such as heating & humidity) that need to be met for you to stand a good chance of keeping them happy and maintaining them for the long-term.
There are some leafy green vegetable items that you should definitely not feed your water dragon. These include the following:
They are great for us humans, but for water dragons, not so good. They are high in oxalate and this is not ideal for them.
Yes, they can eat strawberries as well as the following fruit items:
In addition to these fruit items, as discussed earlier, they can also eat vegetables.
One tip though, it is a good idea to make these food items finely chopped when you offer them. This is so you stand the best chance of them eating them, and avoid choking.
There could be a few reasons why it could be digging:
There is a chance that the digging could be due to an attempt by a female water dragon to lay her eggs. Maybe you didn’t know but she could be gravid. They can become sexually mature from the age of 2 years old and there is a good chance that they could be gravid.
You may be thinking to yourself this is not possible because there’s no male in the enclosure. But, believe it or not, this is still possible, without the presence of a male.
Another reason why they may be digging is that they’re unhappy in the enclosure and want to escape.
This could be caused because of the size of your enclosure. For your information, it should be at least 50 gallons in size or even bigger, if your budget can extend this far.
Another issue that could be making the want to escape could be because they are bored. They may actually just want to get out and roam around. There is no problem with this. From time to time it is a good idea to let them out to roam about, obviously with your supervision.
Finally, you may find that they just genuinely enjoy digging. If they are healthy and eating fine, it could well be this.
There are two things special about a water dragons tail. Firstly it is designed to help them swim. In fact, it is built with strong muscle that is flattened on one side to allow it to glide and cut through the water elegantly.
Lastly, the sheer length of its tail is quite impressive a water dragon can beat up to 1 meter in length and weighing approximately 1 kg. however, up to two-thirds of this length is just its tail alone.
Yes, they can swim. In fact, they can swim pretty well. They can even stay underwater for as long as 90 minutes.
Yes, they can. In colder months before hibernation, they often find that it is warmer in the water than it is out on land. Whilst they can actually sleep in the water, they cannot breathe in the water like a fish can. They will be sleeping with their nose (snout) out of the water to continue breathing oxygen during this period.
If you have ever seen a skink, you may have wondered if they are poisonous. Or maybe saw the blue tongue on one of their popular species, and thought they must be dangerous. I had similar thoughts, but I will now clear up some of the myths.
Are Skinks poisonous? No, they are not poisonous. Neither are they venomous. For some reason, some people are quite superstitious and rumours have led people to believe that they are dangerous, poisonous or even venomous. In fact, they are really not that dangerous at all.
Now that you know that they are not poisonous or venomous. I will now explain what skins are, how they defend themselves. The most popular species and much more.
The Skink is a lizard from the Scincidae family. Its family holds some of the most diverse species of lizard. Some of these skinks have normal lizard features. However, there are some confusing species such as Typhlosaurus, that literally look like they are a snake, instead of a lizard.
For this reason, some people tend to get them confused and mixed up with completely different animals.
Now let me give you an idea of some of the most common stinks out there:
Obviously, there are many different species of skink, however, if we focus on the blue-tongued skink, it has a very noticeable way of defending itself. It uses its blue tongue to confuse and intimidate its prey.
It’s contrasting blue tongue in its pink mouth causes its predators to think twice about attacking it.
Other techniques that are used, beyond this, is the ability to flatten its body and make-up undesirable hissing sounds. This is to fend off any oncoming predators.
Failing this it will use its vicious bite which has quite a lot of pressure. It can cause a lot of pain and injure its opponent.
Yes, they are good pets. Over the last few years, they have become quite popular as pets. This is mainly because of their laid-back and friendly behaviour.
One of the most popular species, that is usually taken as a pet, is the blue-tongued skink. This is because it has the most interesting blue tongue and good temperament.
As stated earlier it is very relaxed and well behaved. Also, it is usually quite happy to be handled, as long as you handle it correctly.
However, you need to make sure that you only pick up a captive bred skink. Because if its captured in the wild, they are not usually as relaxed and well behaved. You may find they have wild tendencies and not wanting to be handled.
Word of warning though, even if you do pick up a captive bred skink if you have them around children. Make sure they are monitored at all times. This is mainly because if they are not handled correctly, and they feel threatened, there is a chance that they may bite.
In addition to this, they may confuse your child’s small fingers as a wiggly worm. And get confused and think food that’s being offered to them. So, to avoid any of this you are strongly advised to monitor your children.
First and foremost, their behaviour. Because they are so easy to adapt to human surroundings and able to accept being handled, they make a good pet.
Because this skink loves eating, it makes it easier to maintain them. They are not as picky! They are omnivores, so they eat a combination of fruit, vegetables and also insects. This means that you have a lot more options to feed them and to keep them happy.
However, you need to make sure that you keep the balance right when you are feeding them. In particular, they need to be fed at least 60% plant matter and vegetation. The final 40% can be a mixture of insects, including waxworms, silkworms, etc.
Is the Typhlosaurus snake or lizard? It is a lizard. However, looking at it, it is understandable how it can be confusing. It is actually part of the skink family. They do not have any limbs and at-a-glance it could easily be mistaken as a snake. It is from African origins and is definitely considered at a lizard.
Are Broadhead skinks dangerous? No, there are rumours and superstitions that some skinks are dangerous. Some even get confused and call them scorpions. Some also believe they have a venomous sting. However, this is not true and is more of an urban myth.
In fact, you will find that there is no Skink in the southwestern region of the United States that is dangerous to humans or poisonous/venomous.
How big does the broadhead skink get? This species of the skink can grow up to 13 inches in length, along with the Great Plains Skink, it is one of the biggest Plestideon skinks. It gets its name from its wide looking jaw and the distinct shape of its head.
What Foods should you avoid giving to your skink? Do not feed your skink artificial based foods, or anything containing harmful chemicals such as pesticides. This can cause your skink harmful health issues. Also, avoid any artificial colouring this is also bad for them.
How much Water does a Skink Need? Generally speaking, you should be providing fresh water on a daily basis. This is because they have a tendency to get sand and other debris in their water throughout the duration of the day. So its best to refresh it every day.
Can you mix Skinks with other lizards? No, it is not a good idea. The fact is, Skinks are quite territorial and will see any other lizard as a threat, even if it’s their own kind. Obviously, if you plan to breed them, that is a different thing. But that may be the only exception.
Do you need hiding spots for your Skink? Yes, Skins need plenty of places to hide. In fact if they do not get enough places to hide, you will find that will not be happy and may even feel jumpy and anxious. So this is an absolute must.
Do they need a lot of humidity? No, not too humid. However, you need to keep the right level of humidity. If you can provide a damp substrate that should suffice. To accompany ths, you need to have the right sized water bowl. The idea is, its big enough for them to put their body in as well as drinking from it.
Do Skinks Need Lots of Space? Obviously, it depends on the individual size of your skink. There are quite a few different species to consider. But generally speaking, you need to provide as much space as your budget can stretch. Put it this way, the hatchlings will need at least 10 or even 20 gallons to feel happy.
The Gila Monster is a mysterious, solitary lizard. They had me wondering how they reproduce or if they even lay eggs or have live young. If you want to know I will tell you.
Do Gila Monsters lay eggs? Yes, they do lay eggs. Typically, they will lay anything from 2 to 12 eggs in one Batch. This is usually in the summertime, around July and August. When the eggs are laid there is a small hole dug up which (approximately 12 cm deep) and the eggs are left, unattended to hatch.
Now you know that they lay eggs, let me explain how they breed in the wild, how they breed in captivity, some useful tips to increase the chances of successful breeding and much more.
It is often suggested that a random group of Gila Monsters is put together to encourage successful breeding. This is mainly due to the complexities of differentiating the male and the females.
The hypothesis is if there is a large group, it increases the chance of some of them pairing up and mating. In addition to this, there is another theory that the males in the pack, that may typically be hard to breed, will be more inclined to do so, due to social pressure and increased competition from rival males.
In captivity there are other challenges, firstly the male does not have an escape route when it is in an enclosure. Therefore there will be more fighting, however, it is believed that fighting is a natural part of establishing who will mate.
The method that has been used successfully in captivity is deliberately separating the male and female Gila Monsters. Then, when you wish to breed them, introduce the female to the male enclosure.
There will be fighting and combat but this is a natural prerequisite to mating. The winner will be gifted the female for breeding. But, you do have to keep a close eye on the fighting to reduce the injuries on the losing lizard.
In captivity for some reason, it has been noticed that the male Gilas use a lot more biting than they would in the wild. This can open up cuts and injuries. Therefore, this needs to be managed.
To encourage successful mating, you need to make sure that the temperature is perfect. Especially after the winter cooling period. To get this right you need to have the temperature at a consistent 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Once you have this and get the timing right, you can expect the “magic” to happen within 4-6 weeks.
For the best results, you need to have a one-to-one ratio of male and female Gilas. This is not mandatory but it usually gives you the best results. Typically, once the male and female are paired up for mating, you can expect this copulation activity to last anything from 15 minutes to 2.5 hours.
Once the female has completed mating and is actually gravid (basically a lizard form of being pregnant), you need to make sure that you separate her. This is so she can lay her eggs and keep them safe from other cage mates.
During this period, when the female is gravid, she will be quiet but alert. It will be a noticeable difference in behavior.
You may even notice large periods of time while she may even appear motionless. Nevertheless, she will still be alert and on the lookout even though she is actually in the enclosure on her own.
During this time you should provide an adequate nesting box for your female Gila monster. This will give her time to rest in the nest box before laying her eggs. Just make sure that there is some Moss substrate there for her to lay her eggs and feel comfortable.
To successfully breed you need to make sure that the female is adequately fed. This is really important and something that a lot of people underestimate. The reality is, if they are not fed adequate food before reproduction, it will not happen it’s a simple as that.
The lizard’s body needs a certain amount of fat reserves for it to allow the female to reproduce so that it does not put itself, or its eggs, at any danger during the process.
The reproduction will typically happen before the winter cooling off period. Therefore, the year before this mating season you need to make sure that the female is well fed and has fat reserves.
— Gila monster (@gilamonsterasu) January 5, 2018
After egg laying, they need to be fed so that they can return to the correct weight. Similar to before they were gravid.
However, do not stop there. After the winter cooling off period, it is important to continue with their feeding. To keep them well fed for the following years breeding cycle. If you do this on a consistent basis you should be in a position to breed them on a yearly basis, without any problems.
Yes, they do have Predators this includes:
Humans are one of their biggest predators. They will often use excuses that they were defending themselves to justify their actions. Coyotes are another predator. Also in captivity, other cage mates are also known predators. Hence the reason why it’s important to keep the female on her own during the egg laying process.
Are Gila Monsters endangered? The official IUCN record states that they are “near threatened”. This is largely to do with changes in their habitat. Such as roads being introduced in the middle of their habitat. Unfortunately, this causes them to be run over when this happens.
In national parks, the Gila Monsters are protected. However, there is a large amount of interest on the black market for them. People are known for capturing them illegally in the wild to sell them on as pets to other people.
Do Gila monsters live underground? Not exactly. The reality is 95% of their time is lived burrowed underground. However, that remaining 5% is spend mixing with other lizards or animals, for example, when they come out to breed or attack their prey.
Are they dangerous? No, the Gila Monster is not regarded as dangerous, however, they do have a venomous bite. On a day-to-day basis, they are quite a relaxed, docile and solitary lizards. But if they are provoked or feel threatened they will bite.
Do they have a large appetite? Yes, they do. However, they don’t eat often. They have the ability to eat up to one-third of their own body weight in one single sitting. However, they have a slow metabolization and have the ability to store fat reserves in their tail. Meaning they may only need to eat a handful of times a year to maintain.
How long does it take for their eggs to hatch? They do not Hatch immediately, it could take as long as 10 months before they actually hatch out during this period of 10 months they are literally left on their own to fend for themselves once they hatch out typically they will be about 6 inches in length and I’ll be left to fend for themselves without their mother being there.
Are Gila Monsters & Komodo Dragons the same thing? No, the Komodo Dragon is substantially larger than the Gila Monster. And it is a very ferocious and formidable lizard. In fact, it is the largest lizard of them all. Because the Gila monster is venomous and assumed to be dangerous it is often bought up in the same conversations. However, in reality, they are quite different.
Komodo Dragons are often ridiculed for their name. Many people wonder where their name came from and if they are even really lizards. For this reason, I will explain where they actually got there name from.
Why is a Komodo dragon called a dragon? When they were first discovered, they were known to have “dragon-like” features and are from the island of Komodo. These lizards were discovered in the early 1900s. During the first world war, when a plane crashed and discovered them.
Now you know whey they are called this, lets now learn more about them, such as what other names they have, if people can actually have them as pets, if they are venomous, what other animals they prey on and more.
The Komodo Dragon is also known as the Komodo monitor. Its scientific name is “Varanus komodoensis” and it is found on the Indonesian island called Komodo. It is also one of the largest lizard species in the world.
It often raises curiosity amongst people, due to its sheer size (up to 10ft long) and dangerous persona. They are large formidable lizards. They are also known part of the Monitor lizard family (Varanidae).
This is because the Komodo dragon fits into the category of reptiles perfectly. Firstly it has a backbone, scales, does not live in water, so it breathes through its lungs rather than using Gills. Finally, it is also cold-blooded. With all these attributes it is a perfect fit to be classed as a reptile, no matter the size.
Yes, the Komodo dragon is an endangered species. The reason for this can be pinned down to a few key things:
To summarise, in the Komodo dragons natural habitat there has been volcanic activity which has caused widespread damage to their environment. This has affected their numbers.
But one of the biggest problems that they have is us, humans. Firstly they are sometimes hunted by us and secondly, there are indirect effects such as us hunting food that they rely on for food. An example of this is deer and other livestock.
Another large contributing factor is their tendency to eat their own young. They are also known to attack smaller Komodo Dragons as well.
The short answer for this is no. But let me explain:
Komodo dragons can be up to 10 feet in length. This is a really big lizard. Meaning anyone that would consider taking care of them would need a very advanced level of skill as well as unlimited resources to accommodate their diet and living environment. Not to mention the fact that they would be a constant danger of being eaten.
Komodo dragons are known to have very bad dental hygiene, to say the least. In recent studies, it has been found that the Komodo dragons can have up to 50 different variations of bacteria and toxic offerings. In fact, a proportion of these are actually very dangerous to humans if they are passed on.
The male and female Komodo dragon is very hard to tell apart. In fact, there is no obvious way to do this especially if you are an untrained individual.
Also to make matters worse mixing males together is very dangerous because you can almost guarantee they will fight.
One of the things that Komodo dragons tend to do it is to prey on smaller Komodo dragons in their vicinity. As I’ve stated earlier, they also have a tendency to eat their own young. They will not hesitate to attack each other. As a potential keeper, you could have serious problems keeping them away from each other.
Out of over 3,000 lizard species, the Komodo dragon wins the prize for being the largest living lizard in the world! pic.twitter.com/6teBafl6eu
— San Diego Zoo (@sandiegozoo) August 16, 2016
Nothing is safe around a Komodo dragon, they will eat almost anything. And when I say almost anything, I mean it. This includes hair, teeth, and horns off of their prey.
They have really poor hearing especially in comparison to us human beings. They cannot voices that are low or high pitch screeches. So, communicating with them could be a challenge.
A: Yes, they are. However many people do not believe they are. Due to a recent discovery by researcher Brian fry, it was discovered that they do actually have venom.
Previous to this it was believed that they would only cause damage by the bacteria and toxins in their saliva which is passed on when they bite their prey.
This still happens to be honest, but they also unleash venom into their victim which can cause a number of different effects on their body.
This includes reducing the victims’ blood pressure, sending the victim into a shocked state.
All of this makes it almost impossible for their prey to escape, even if they are lucky and manage to escape their vicious bites.
It is been found that the Komodo dragons venom is comparable to the impact of some of the world’s most venomous snakes.
They are however different in the way that they inject this venom. Snakes typically inject the venom using their fangs. But, Komodo dragons do things slightly differently.
They unleash a vicious bite into the victim and open a deadly wound. The venom is then seeped into the wound affecting their prey, effectively immobilizing them. This stops them getting away so that the Komodo dragon can finish their meal.
A: Yes, Komodo dragons can go after quite large animals, including deer, wild boars or even bigger. They use a strategy known as “ambushing” to catch their prey. This is done by lying in wait, waiting for their prey to go past them, without them knowing they’re there. Then pouncing on them when they are unexpected!
Yes, not only do Komodo dragons eat large animals they also have the ability to eat a lot in one sitting.
To put this into perspective, it is been known that one Komodo dragon can eat up to 80% of its own body weight in one sitting.
However, although they eat a lot in one sitting they do not eat frequently. For example, after eating a really large meal, they may not again for a whole month.
They don’t actually digest and metabolize these parts of the body. They actually regurgitate them into pellets, known as “Gastric Pellets”. They are ejected from their body. It is a compacted pellet of hair, horns, teeth, etc.
They have a tendency to look out for carcasses rather than always hunting for Life prey. This makes life a lot easier for them. They have a good skill of being able to detect and smell carcasses up to 6 miles away from them.
Unfortunately for the residents of komodo, this presents a problem. Because they sometimes detect carcasses, such as human bodies, that have been recently buried. To stop this happening, locals have been known to stop using sand based graves and use clay instead. As well as putting large objects, such as rocks, on top to prevent them from digging it up.
A: In a bizarre method to save themselves from being cannibalized by their own peers, they sometimes cover themselves in feces to make themselves seem unattractive to their predator. In reality, if you were facing being eaten by them, wouldn’t you consider this?
Using wood a substrate for your reptile is quite common. But, you have to be careful because not all wood can be used. If you choose the wrong one, it can cause health issues for your reptile.
What is safe wood for an animal enclosure? Shredded Aspen and Cypress Mulch is a good safe wood for reptiles. If you have the budget you can pick them up in most pet stores. However, you can also consider using some types of wood from outside, as long as you are prepared to clean and sterilize it first.
To further expand on this, I am going to explain which other types of wood you use. As well as types that you need to avoid because they can be very bad for your reptile, and much more,
To start off with let me list a few wood substrates that you can use safely without any concerns. Later on in the article, I will outline some that you should avoid at all costs. I will also explain how you can prepare wood that has not been purchased from a conventional pet shop.
Here are some types of wood you can use for substrate:
Generally speaking, most hardwoods can be considered as well, such as:
I’m going to outline certain types of wood that you should avoid to keep your reptile safe.
Cedarwood is a popular wood that is used for furniture products, such as closets, it is used because it is good at avoiding long-term decay of furniture. Also, it repels insects. However, for reptiles, it is not a good idea, especially for lizards.
The reason it is not good for your reptile is that it can cause skin lesions or even respiratory health problems for your reptile.
Some of the most dangerous versions of this cedar wood include White or Japanese Cedar.
The biggest issue with this wood is that most commercial products very rarely say exactly which type of cedar that they use in their products. So as a general rule, you should avoid using them.
These trees have similar issues to cedar wood. Although, there is not as much evidence to back it up. However, as a general rule, they are to be avoided to maintain the health of your reptile.
The main issue is the fact that it secretes aromatic phenol, which causes health issues with reptiles.
Any wood that has been treated with chemicals is a big no-no! This obviously encapsulates quite a range of wood types. Sometimes it’s quite hard to identify which wood has been treated with chemicals. But if you suspect that it has been chemically treated, do not use it with your reptile.
These chemicals can contaminate the air or seep out onto your reptile, so they are not to be used.
Fruit trees are notorious for being sprayed with pesticides to keep away insects, that eat their fruit. These pesticides can have serious health effects on your reptile and should be avoided at all costs.
A general rule is, any tree that has been treated with chemicals should be avoided. This includes herbicides, pesticides, wood preservatives or anything along those lines.
This one is relatively obvious to see and common sense. Basically, avoid using any wood which has got sharp edges that could scratch or impale your reptile. The good thing is, this can be seen quite easily.
However, there are a couple of known trees that have exceptionally thorny branches that you should avoid, such as Hawthorn or Honey Locust.
Wood is often used in Terrariums in the form of branches, logs or any kind of wooden climbing apparatus. It’s fun for your reptile and is encouraged in most cases.
Most people tend to buy these accessories from their local pet shop or online.
However, if you are on a budget or have access to a large amount of wild grown wood, you can consider using it.
The reason you need to prepare it first is it may contain bugs, bacteria, viruses or dangerous fungus. Without prep, this can easily pass on to your reptile and cause unknown health issues. So, to avoid this you need to prepare the wood.
Preparation is essentially cleaning and sterilizing the wood so it is safe for your reptile to use.
The first step is to clean off all of the surface level dirt. Give the wood a good bang just to get rid of any of the dirt that may be collected on it.
Once you have removed some of the obvious dirt, you then need to use some hot water to clean the wood. The best way to do this is to use a steel bristle brush, so it can clean off the dirt properly.
The objective here is to remove any germs, viruses, fungus or any other related bacteria that are not visible to the naked eye.
Because wood is porous it is not a good idea to try and use chemicals to sterilize it. Because this would just contaminate the wood. The best way to do this is to use a handheld steaming unit. Alternatively boiling or baking the wood is a good way to remove all of these potential issues.
If you are going to consider doing baking or boiling, then take it from me, baking is the easiest and fastest option.
To bake the wood you need to place it into an oven and set the temperature to 250 to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. However, be warned, never leave the wood unattended. Because it is a fire hazard!
You can expect it to take up to an hour before it is completely sterilized.
If you would prefer to go down the boiling route then you can set it at a slightly lower temperature such as 210-212 degrees Fahrenheit. But you will need to boil it for a lot longer. In particular, up to 6 hours to ensure that all the bacteria and viruses are removed.
After you have sterilized the wood you need to make sure that you completely dry it off. The reason that you need to do this is, is because leaving it wet will allow it to decay very fast. So you need to get it dry and usable for a substrate.
To do this you need to put it in a dry and clean area. Ideally not outside, because if you put it outside it could be susceptible to being infected again, by insects or other pathogens.
Once it is in this clean and safe area. You need to leave it to dry out for a number of days to be 100% certain that it is dried out properly. Especially if it’s a larger piece of wood.
Another option that you can use to dry it is by placing it into an oven for a few hours. You will need to set the temperature to 200 degrees Fahrenheit. You need to take some caution though. Never leave it unattended while it is drying in the oven because it is a fire risk.
What kind of wood can you use to build an iguana cage? For Iguanas you can use most hardwoods. Such as Birch, Walnut or Cheery wood. However, be warned, it is always going to be quite an expensive job. If you want to reduce the costs, Oak and Birch are the most economical options at approximately $1 to $2 per foot.
Why do some people use vinegar to clean their reptile vivarium? If you are a reptile keeper you will know from experience that from time to time they will start to smell.
In addition to this, you need to clean the enclosure for good maintenance and to keep your reptile healthy. For that reason, white vinegar, in particular, is used. It is good because it cleans well, removes the smell and does not contain dangerous chemicals.
Many people are curious about Gila Monsters, mainly because they are deemed as dangerous venomous lizards. However, what is their Behaviour really like?
What is the Gila Monsters Temperament like? In general, they are quite relaxed, solitary lizards. In fact, it tends to shy away from human contact due to fear. However, they do have a venomous bite and if they are scared or feel that they are being attacked they will defend itself by biting.
Now you know a little about how they behave, let’s look into if they are safe to be handled, if people actually keep them in captivity, how to keep them if you wish to and so much more.
The Gila Monster (Heloderma Suspectum), is a venomous lizard from the southwestern regions of the United States and also found in Mexico.
It is closely related to the Mexican beaded lizard and is typically up to 2 feet long. It is a relatively heavy lizard and moves quite slow.
Yes, it can and will bite. However, it is unlikely to attack humans unless it feels under threat. Its natural form of Defence is to run away and avoid conflict. But, as discussed earlier, if they feel under threat they will bite you.
In the event that they do feel like they are being attacked, they will give a warning first by opening their mouth wide and making a hissing sound to give you the warning to stay away.
The bite is quite vicious and it will inject venom into you. However, it is unlikely to cause death. But one of the biggest problems with the Gilla monster is actually getting it off you once you are bitten.
Once it locks its jaws, it has a tendency to keep its mouth clampdown on your body. This can obviously cause extreme pain and psychological shock. All in all, quite a traumatic event to be avoided at all costs.
Generally speaking, no, they are not really safe to handle. However, if you are a trained professional and have the skills to do this it is possible to handle them. Be warned, even trained professionals still need heavy protective gloves. Just in case they get bitten.
An important tip, never hold them by their head or tail. This is because it can cause injury.
They can be kept in captivity, however, they are definitely not for beginners or inexperienced lizard keepers.
To handle them successfully you need to have a large amount of skill, patience and the resources required to facilitate them. This is because they are quite large lizards.
If you feel that you’re capable of this I will give you some tips on how best to keep them happy in captivity.
The minimum dimensions for a Gila Monster are 4 x 2 x 2 ft. But, I want to stress that these are minimum dimensions. The reality is, a Gila monster is a large lizard and can be up to 2 feet in length. Therefore, the bigger the enclosure the better. They need as much room to maneuver as possible.
If you are interested in what types of tanks or enclosures, you could consider large cattle stock tanks can also be considered for this.
Another very important point is to have a very secure lid to keep them inside the enclosure. This is for two reasons. One, it’s important for the safety of your Gila Monster itself. But also for other people, because if it is to escape it could be dangerous. If someone pushes or prods it by accident, it could cause it to bite them.
The best substrate for the killer monster is bark chips, moss or sand. the main objective is to try and keep the enclosure as dry as possible.
You want to try and keep the substrate deep enough but at the same time not so deep that you can’t find loose bits of uneaten food or even lizard feces. Also when I say deep enough I mean deep enough so that it can absorb the moisture, are you with me?
The Gila Monster likes to spend a lot of times hiding in hideout dens or Burrows. Therefore, it is a good idea, in captivity, to emulate this.
— Gila monster (@gilamonsterasu) January 5, 2018
In the wild, this lizard doesn’t eat very regular at all. As you can imagine it eats when it has success with hunting. To give you an idea of how infrequently it eats, you could expect them to eat only 8 to 10 times in a whole year.
When they do eat in the wild they typically eat Reptile eggs, small Birds, other lizards, frogs, etc.
In captivity, you can expect them to eat mealworms, crickets, and other insects. As they start to get a little bit bigger they will start to move on to small pinkie mice in their diet as well.
This lizard enjoys a combination of basking in sunlight as well as cooling off in a reduced temperature area. Therefore, you need to emulate this behavior in your enclosure.
This heated area, where they can bask, can easily be emulated by having a simple rock (Click to see the price on Amazon) which is elevated and then having a heat lamp to provide the Heat.
In the warmer area of the tank, you want it to be 85 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. In the cooler area, on the other hand, you want it to be from 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. At night-time you want the temperature to drop down anywhere from 70 to 75.
One thing to note, the heat that you provide is very important to the health of your Gila Monster. So, make sure that you have proper heating facilities. And also make sure that you have a plan B, in case anything goes technically wrong with your heating equipment.
Lighting is also critical to their wellbeing. It is advised, after the hibernation period, to provide 8 hours of light, followed by 16 hours of darkness. As it moves towards the summertime this will gradually increase. Light hours this time may increase up to 10 hours of light. It is important to have a basking light during these periods of lights to keep them happy.
They like to bask in the water directly, therefore, you need to provide a large enough water dish so that they can do this. You also need to make sure that you change the water on a daily basis. Because they like to bask in the water and drink at the same time.
Why is it called the killer monster? The Gila monster was named after the “Gila River” where it was originally found. However, the word “Monster” is unknown. One can only assume it is due to their build and size. Maybe the word monster was just a nickname that was attached to them.
Are Gila Monsters the only venomous lizards? No, there are other venomous lizards, in particular, its Close relative the Mexican beaded lizard.
Many people believe that there are only two venomous lizards available which is known to be the Gila monster and the Mexican beaded dragon.
However, there are some debates to suggest that there are more venomous lizards than these two.
How do they keep warm during the winter months? In the winter months, they dig burrows to keep themselves warm. They also have a method of storing fat reserves in their tail. To keep them alive during times when there is not much food available for them.
Do they have very good eyesight? No, they do not have very good eyesight at all. However, this is not a big problem for them. Because when they hunt for food, in particular, they actually use their scent and smell to detect their prey. They will flick out their tongue to pick up the scent to direct them towards their prey.
Are you legally allowed to own a Gila monster? In some states in America, it is illegal to own a Gila monster. For example, in Massachusetts, you cannot have one.
In other States, such as Arizona, they closely monitor Gila Monsters. You are not allowed to hunt for them and then bring them into captivity. This is a violation.
So it is a good idea to check your local state or location to make sure that you can legally own one of these before going out and trying to keep one.