Tokay Gecko Caresheet

Here is my own caresheet that I have compiled.


Tokay Gecko General Information

Information on Tokay Geckos:

Common Name: Tokay Gecko

Latin name:  Gekko gecko 

            The Tokay gecko is found throughout south and south-eastern Asia. It has also been introduced and is now established in areas such as Hawaii, south Florida, and the Caribbean. At one time, this arboreal gecko was only found in the tropical rainforests throughout its range. However, due to reduced habitat and increased human presence, these geckos are now commonly seen around or in buildings and homes that people inhabit, they can be found in many islands such as the Ecuador. They are found in houses that are near jungles, some are found in deserts, which is odd to this type of geckos. In parts of southeast Asia, Tokay Geckoes are regarded as harbingers of luck, good fortune, and fertility. Tokays are so named because of their distinctive "TO-kay! Tokay!" loud calls. They also emit a trilling sound.

Tokay geckos are pale gray with bluish spots when they have been in the dark, darkening to dark gray with reddish spots in the light. Tokays can also darken or lighten their ground and spot colors to better blend in with their background. They also have folds of skin that prevent the animal from casting a shadow while resting on a tree. They open up the skin fold completely and this allows them to blend in with the tree bark.

            The average size for this gecko is 20 to 25 cm (8"-10") for females and 30 to 36 cm (12"-14") for males. A Tokay gecko can be expected to live between 15 and 20 years in captivity, although there were a few exceptions that have been known to live 25-27 years old. They will need a 20-gallon aquarium and a heat source for being that tall. Tokay geckos are renown for their 'feisty' disposition. Most wild caught specimens immediately open their mouths in a defensive display when any attempt is made to handle or restrain them. A very painful bite generally follows if the display is ignored. However, some Tokay geckos do become accustomed to handling if they are exposed to it from a young age. Tokays are primarily nocturnal, so you may not see them very often during the day, but they will come out at night.

If you have 2 males they will fight and severely injure each other, but multiple females can be together. Males can be housed with multiple females, but ensure that your enclosure is large enough to accommodate the number of geckos you have.

Tokays have the specialized lamellae on the pads of their toes that enable them to walk on vertical surfaces, including ceilings. Contrary to popular misconception, these pads are not "sticky" but rather are composed of tiny, microscopic filaments, which find equally tiny imperfections in surface - including glass.

A quick side note: These geckos are EXTREMELY nimble, they can shoot across your tank in fractions of a second!! A gecko with this kind of speed, plus add the fact that they can climb glass with ease makes for very tough to catch geckos. I DO NOT recommend this gecko for inexperienced owners. You should have some experience and knowledge of caring for geckos before getting Tokays. Aboreal species are a different ball game than a leopard or African fat-tailed gecko, which are terrestrial species. If you are up for a challenge and want a mainly hands-off beautiful vocal gecko, then try Tokays.


Tokay Gecko Feeding Information

Geckos require Calcium supplements. All feed should be shaken in a Calcium supplement till coated before feeding and a small dish of calcium is recommended in the tank for you gecko's to lick, especially if you are breeding them. Two supplements should be used: one that is just calcium/D3 and another that is a reptile multivitamin. You can feed your gecko calcium dusted insects such as crickets (main food), mealworms, wax worms, super worms, and an occasional pinkie mouse. Wax worms and super worms are not to be used as a main diet, due to the fact they do not provide enough nutrition, they are a high protein treat (very fattening), but good for breeding female geckos. The Multi-vitamin can be given every 3rd or 4th feeding, but the calcium dusting is what should be used mainly.

Gut-loading your geckos food is recommended. Whatever you feed you gecko's food supply with will be inadvertently be fed to your gecko, so the more minerals the feed eats, the more your gecko will be ingesting. Its always a good idea to feed the insects a high quality diet so as to "gut-load" them and increase their nutritional value. Baby carrots are what I use to gut load all my geckos foods. I slice the carrots in half; the crickets seem to eat it a little more readily then. There are a wide variety of feeds you can use for crickets.

            Like most arboreal geckos, Tokay geckos will not drink out of a water dish. They require daily misting to increase humidity and for drinking. A few squirts from a spray bottle should accomplish this task. And some drops too. Mister systems may be an idea, set on a timer. Another way to boost humidity and provide water for lapping is to place some ice cubes on top of the screened top over the plants...the melt water drips on the leaves

            A good measure for the size of cricket or mealworm is never feed your gecko insects larger than the length from the gecko's tip of the nose to its eyes. If too large of a cricket is fed, the juvenile may have digestive problems and regurgitate the meal. A few stray crickets may not be bad, but large numbers of crickets can stress your gecko, and should be reduced to an acceptable amount (A few for snacks in-between feedings). Feed hatchlings and younger geckos everyday. Feed juveniles and adults every second day. 

It is not advisable to feed your Tokay gecko meat, as this may increase their aggression.


Feeders used:

-1 or 2 week old crickets for very young geckos, 3 or 4 week old crickets for sub-adult geckos, 4 week old or adult crickets for adult geckos (4 weeks are easier to digest, allow for more consumption of calcium, and less noise)

-Mealworms, Kingworms, Superworms

-Waxworms, Butterworms, Silkworms

-Pinky mice (A treat to feed them once they are old enough, but no more than once a month)

Food Supplements used:

-Repti-Calcium with D3

-Repti-Vitamin with Beta Carotene (I only dust crickets with this occasionally)

-High-Calcium Cricket Feed

-Fresh baby carrots, sliced thinly (for crickets/mealworms/superworms)


Tokay Gecko Housing Information

            Geckos tanks require a temperature from 75F-90F. It is important for the tank to have a heat gradient, so ensure that your heat source is on one side of the tank, and there is a cool side so that the geckos can control their temperature by moving to one side or the other. Geckos will move from the cool to warm side of the tank, as they need. Hiding caves should be provided in both temperature zones. Tank should remain from 80F-90F during daytime and 75F-85F during night time. Geckos require about 12 hours daylight, 12 hours night time. A red or blue nocturnal bulb can be used during night time. UV lighting is not required, but may be beneficial, but is not necessary and has not been proven. They do not require the light source, but it is a good idea to maintain a consistent day/night pattern, and lights are a great way to keep a pattern like this to help maintain your geckos health and happiness.

            Lots of branches and vertical hiding spots are necessary furnishings for this arboreal gecko. Plants are a good idea, even if they are artificial. Tokay Geckos can climb even glass with ease, so your enclosure should be more vertical space than ground space. Your enclosure must be enclosed completely; you dont want to be trying to catch a wall-climbing gecko, do you? A comfortable enclosure for a pair of Tokays is 24x24x36, but individuals can be housed in a 20gal tank. Keep in mind, the more crowded the space, the more chances of your gecko being stressed. I personally will not house an adult gecko in anything less than an 18x18x24 tank. The more space, the better. I think that cramping your gecko in an undersized tank may stunt the geckos growth.

Coco-fibre, sphagnum moss, or anything that hold moisture can all be used for substrate (bedding) in the tank for geckos. Your need to maintain a humidity level of about 70% to 90%. Clean or replace any substrate frequently. Decorations like cork-bark, rock slabs, driftwood, artificial cave structures, and artificial plants can also be used as decorations for your tank. Be careful that your decorations will not collapse and crush your geckos tho, and that the decorations provide some cover and hiding spots for your geckos. If there are not enough hiding spots, your gecko may become stressed and nervous and may not eat properly.

About cleaning your tanks. Do not use any harmful cleaners, only herp safe cleaners and rinse everything well after to ensure no residue is left behind. Clean fecal matter very often and sterilize everything in your tank regularly, to prevent bacteria build-up. Substrates like moss and forest bedding should be changed completely on a regular basis. These creatures depend on YOU to keep their environment clean and healthy for them, so please, do not neglect your little friends!!


Tokay Gecko Breeding Information

Not alot is known about breeding Tokays, but heres some info I found.


Breeding Tokay geckos is not very common; in fact the majority are wild caught. (Even the ones pet stores have) Most Tokays that are wild caught will have parasites and may be stressed or dehydrated. Take a fresh fecal to a reptile veterinarian for a fecal flotation to determine if the animal is infected with worms; if so, treatment is required (generally, oral medication administered 2-3 times over a period of 2-3, or 4-6 weeks).

            Breeding season lasts about 4 to 5 months. Once breeding does occur, up to six clutches of one or two eggs are laid every 2 to 6 weeks. Eggs are oval shaped and are around 1" to 1.5" in length. In captivity, they may be laid on a solid foundation, even the glass sides of their terrarium. The Eggs are guarded by both parents until hatching, but captive Tokays are prone to eating their own eggs. Hatching occurs after an incubation period of 2 to 6 months at 82F. Hatchlings are from 2 to 3 long.

        As I learn more, I will add in information.


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