Geckos are considered small lizards; but how big do they eventually get? What kind of size (length and weight) will they grow to and what factors are important to them fulfilling their potential? Here is all that you are going to want to know.
So, how big do geckos get? The average gecko will range from 10 to 24 inches in length by the time they reach full size (this includes the tail). They will weigh between 25-100 grams depending on the size and the species. For geckos, you can expect full adult maturity in around 18 months following birth. However, increased temperature and humidity in the early phases of life can result in faster development and reaching sexual maturity sooner.
These lizards are small creatures, but they still lots of room in their habitat to climb and move from one place to another.
As an owner, you will need to make sure that you provide a sufficiently large enclosure and that you also supply them with several hiding spots. You can use branches, plants, and driftwood.
Let us now explore the topic further so that you can get a better understanding of this reptiles growth potential and some considerations you should take into account if you own one.
Table of Contents
Gecko Growth Rate
Different species of gecko will grow to different sizes and weights; they have their own unique potential which is largely dictated by genetic and inheritance.
It’s important to consider the species of gecko in which you decide to own. This will largely dictate what you can expect.
Looking at the example of leopard geckos, they grow from hatchling to maturity in around 18 months.
Once leopard geckos reach their full size, surprisingly, they continue growing.
All geckos seem to respond to rises in temperature and humidity in their surroundings by increasing in size and reaching sexual maturity sooner.
There is no absolute way to determine the precise age of a gecko as there is no reliable leopard growth rate chart.
Their size is dependant on their overall health, diet, calorie intake, and genetic traits.
Baby leopards have bands around their bodies instead of spots; as they age, the bands separate and become spots.
This process doesn’t occur until the leopard is one year old. When you see a gecko with bands instead of spots, this indicates that it only hatched within the year.
As hatchlings, leopard geckos are 3-4 inches in length and grow to be between 6-10 inches in length, and will live between six to ten years.
Female geckos are on average, 7-8 inches long, and male geckos are, on average, 8-10 inches long.
As you can see males are slightly larger at full growth.
Gecko Size Chart (By Age And Weight)
In this section we will be taking a look at the two most common species of geckos that are often kept as pets; Crested and Leopard Geckos.
We will first look at a size chart of the crested gecko, but it is only a rough guide as crested geckos grow at their own speed.
Fluctuations in temperature and humidity can affect the growth rate of every gecko species.
Once a gecko weighs between 10 to 12 grams, they continue to grow quickly until they reach 25 grams in weight.
As you will soon see, growth is slow for the first three months, as there is only an increase of one gram every month.
From month four to month seven, growth picks up slightly, with a rise of two grams every month.
Every gecko species that reaches 10 to 12 grams in weight will experience a growth spurt until they weigh 25 grams.
After reaching a weight of 25 grams, their growth rate will slow down once again.
Crested geckos continue to grow slowly until they reach reproductive maturity, and then they stop growing.
Average Crested Gecko Growth Rate Chart
|1 month||2 grams|
|2 months||3 grams|
|3 months||4 grams|
|4 months||5 grams|
|5 months||7 grams|
|6 months||9 grams|
|7 months||11 grams|
|8 months||13 grams|
|9 months||17 grams|
|10 months||21 grams|
|11 months||25 grams|
|12 months||29 grams|
|13 months||31 grams|
|14 months||32 grams|
|15 months||33 grams|
To learn more about the growth of a crested gecko, read our guide here.
Let’s now look at a growth rate for a leopard gecko. However, consider that this is also a rough guide, as there is no standard growth rate chart for leopard gecko.
Average Leopard Gecko Growth Rate Chart
|1 month||15-20 grams|
|2 months||18-30 grams|
|4-6 months||25-60 grams|
|9-18 months||40-80 grams|
Leopard geckos are therefore slightly larger which is something to consider if you are a potential new owner.
There is also a wide range of “healthy” weights for a leopard gecko.
Generally speaking, adult leopards should weigh no less than 40 grams, which is considered underweight.
This species reaches adulthood between 9 and 18 months of age. Most adult leopards weigh between 40-80 grams; however, some larger types weigh between 90-110 grams.
Factors That Impact Growth And Size
As previously mentioned, the size and growth rate of a gecko is determined by their health, diet, calorie intake, and certain genetic traits.
Males are often larger than females; in leopard geckos, you can tell the differences in size between the sexes after they are ten months old.
There are things that an owner can do to ensure that their pet gecko stays healthy and grows well.
Consider the following information to help you raise your pet gecko:
The majority of a pet geckos diet should consist of a variety of insects. This is true for all species.
Crickets usually make up the central part of a pet gecko’s diet.
Other bugs like flies, silkworms, fruit flies, etc. can be offered in addition to crickets. It is an excellent idea to gut-load insects 24 hours before feeding them to your gecko.
Insects should be fed live, and geckos possess cone shaped teeth which are ideal for catching such prey.
That being said, there are certain species that can and do well on fruit. These are known as frugivorous species. The most notable are crested and day geckos.
Safe fruits include: berries (raspberries, blueberries), potted fruits (apples, cherries), tropical fruits (pineapples, mangos) and other fruits like grapes.
All fruits should be finely mashed and eat for your gecko to consume. They should also be fed in moderation with insects still being the significant feed of the diet.
Consider that not all geckos can eat fruit. Leopard and African fat tail are some such species.
Consider dusting prey with calcium powder at least twice a week. This will ensure you gecko meets their calcium to phosphorus balance and ratio- which is crucial to their health.
Since geckos are nocturnal, you must feed them at night, as you can ensure that they will be awake.
Feed your pet as much as they can enthusiastically eat.
Young geckos eat every day, while adults eat every other day.
Light And Humidity
Geckos come from a subtropical, humid climate. So you must emulate this in their enclosure.
Maintain a daytime ambient temperature of 75 – 90 degrees Fahrenheit, with nighttime temperatures being 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit.
Heat can be supplied by the use of ceramic heat elements or special reptile bulbs. You should use white heat bulbs in the daytime, and red or purple bulbs at night.
Nocturnal geckos don’t need UVB lighting; however, many experts feel that UV lighting is still advantageous to the general health of nocturnal animals.
Most geckos require moderate to high humidity in their habitat. For a house gecko, aim for 60 to 70 percent relative humidity, this can be measured using a hygrometer.
Regular misting of your reptile regularly is an excellent way to keep your gecko hydrated.
Your gecko will require a substrate that preserves moisture. This will also support the required humidity.
Shredded coconut fiber and shredded bark make excellent substrate materials and promote a humid environment.
Zoo Med Forest Floor Bedding from Amazon is an ideal choice, with many excellent reviews and recommendations by fellow gecko owners.
There are about 1,500 species of gecko that have many things in common except size.
It is hard to provide an exact figure, yet we can expect the average gecko to range from 1.6cms to 24 inches in total length (including the tail). Weight can range from 25-110 grams.
There is no reliable growth rate as such because the size of geckos depends on many factors.
Diet, calorie intake, genetic traits, but also temperature, and humidity play a significant role in their growth and potential.
If you own a pet gecko, it is up to you to learn to care for your specific species correctly and seek veterinary advice as often as is needed.
Make sure that there are no drastic changes to your lizard’s environment, and monitor their temperature and humidity levels.
If you own a common house gecko, their average lifespan is five years, so their living conditions must be suitable to help them live at least that long.
Geckos make ideal pets, as they can be housed in small spaces and are relatively inexpensive as reptiles go.
Many geckos originate from southern Asia but have made their way to many warm parts of the world by hitchhiking on ships.
In temperate countries, you would find these lizards clung to walls and ceilings – they are quite harmless, and many humans are happy to cohabit with these creatures.
In colder countries, you can house many geckos in a 20-gallon terrarium, and maintain a suitable temperature for them.
Ultimately, these make great pets. With a little bit of research behind you and an understanding of the differences between the species, you’ll be in a good position to take care of this reptile for many years to come.
Do Geckos Make Good Pets?
Domesticated geckos are placid, calm, and not overly dangerous, poisonous, or venomous. Due to their smaller size and happiness to be held, they make an ideal family pet. They’re also generally calm when being held. Geckos are rarely aggressive, although they can be if they feel under threat or in danger. It is important to consider their needs and requirements to ensure that they do not feel the need to defend themselves.
How Many Geckos Can Live Together?
This depends but for safety and optimal health, it is recommended to keep one gecko being housed alone. Cohabitation can be stressful and can lead to issues with food, illness, and fighting among the group. One gecko will require a tank of at least 20 gallons. If you decide to keep geckos together, you should ensure that you only have one male as housing multiple will likely result in them fighting over territory. A 40-gallon tank+ is considered the minimum for 2 geckos+ more geckos being housed together.
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.
How big will my geckos get? ›
Adult females are about 18 to 20 cm (7.1 to 7.9 in) in length and weigh about 50 to 70 grams, while adult male geckos are about 20 to 28 cm (7.9 to 11.0 in) in length and weigh about 60 to 80 grams.How big should a 1 year old gecko be? ›
If you purchased a starter enclosure for your gecko, this is probably when you'll need to buy them a larger, more permanent tank. Your leopard gecko is finally considered an adult at around 12 months old for females, 6 months for males, 7+ inches long, and weighing roughly 50+ grams for males, 45 grams for females.What are the sizes of geckos? ›
Geckos are small, mostly carnivorous lizards that have a wide distribution, found on every continent except Antarctica. Belonging to the infraorder Gekkota, geckos are found in warm climates throughout the world. They range from 1.6 to 60 centimetres (0.6 to 23.6 inches).How old is a 4 inch gecko? ›
Babies at birth measure 3 to 4 inches and weigh 2 to 5 grams. It takes about a year for a gecko to reach adulthood, at which time a female measures 7 to 8 inches and a male 8 to 11 inches. The female should weigh 50 to 70 grams and the male 60 to 80 grams.What age is a gecko fully grown? ›
Adult size is generally reached by 18 to 24 months. Sexual maturity depends on weight rather than age. Leopard geckos can breed once they reach 35 g.How long should you not hold a baby gecko for? ›
Baby geckos can be very skittish, so handling them when they are little can help acclimate them to touch and make them less afraid. However, until they are at least three inches long, they can be injured when they are handled, so it is better to let them grow a bit before picking them up regularly.How many crickets should a 1 year old gecko eat? ›
Juvenile Tokay Geckos (4-12 months old) = 6-10 medium crickets 6 days a week. Maturing Tokay Geckos (12 months and older) = 4-7 large crickets every other day.How old is a 6 inch gecko? ›
Here are their lengths at different ages but do note that these are just generalizations and may not apply to your gecko: Birth: around 3 inches. 3 months old: 5 inches. 6 months old: 5 to 6 inches.What is the smallest gecko? ›
The Jaragua Gecko is the smallest of all 23,000 species of reptiles, birds, and mammals, researchers said.What is the smallest pet gecko? ›
The Virgin Islands dwarf gecko (Sphaerodactylus parthenopion) is the smallest known reptile and lizard species, along with the Jaragua dwarf gecko (Sphaerodactylus ariasae). Both species grow to a mass of just 14 grams.
How old is the oldest gecko? ›
The leopard gecko is known to live for up to 20 years in captivity. The oldest known leopard gecko was a male who lived until he was 28.Can a gecko bite you? ›
It's quite uncommon for a gecko to bite, but they can if they feel threatened or are being territorial. Since they are quite timid creatures, its more likely for them to run off rather than attack.How old do geckos love? ›
A leopard gecko can grow to around 15 to 25 centimetres and live for 10 to 20 years in captivity, so owning one is a big commitment. They prefer to live alone but can become used to being handled if done so carefully.Can you tell if a gecko is a boy or a girl? ›
Checking if your gecko has pre-anal pores is the most accurate way to determine if they are male or female. Pre-anal pores are a small, V-shaped line of pores just above a male gecko's vent between their legs. While males have very pronounced pores that look like large black or brown dots, females lack them entirely.When can I touch my gecko? ›
Start handling your gecko when it is young.
Let it sit in its tank for max a day unless it's very stressed, then give it some more time so it can explore and get comfortable. Don't feel bad if, once it checks out its home, it doesn't come out of its favorite hiding spot for a while.
Sleep Behavior of Leopard Geckos
In fact, leopard geckos sleep for 12 to 13 hours on an average day. However, throughout the night, leopard geckos are most awake and active. Whether dry or humid, geckos sleep curled up in their shelters. But they sometimes randomly lie around their enclosures.
Lifespan of Leopard Geckos
Leopard geckos can live 10-20 years in captivity with good healthcare, proper environment, and a healthy diet. In the wild, however, leopard geckos typically only live only 6-8 years.
How often do Leopard Geckos eat? Leopard Geckos younger than one year should be fed every day. Healthy adult geckos should be fed every other day. Sickly geckos should be fed once a day until they regain their strength.How often do baby geckos drink water? ›
Water Recommendations for Leopard Geckos
Offer fresh water daily in a water dish large enough for the lizard to soak its entire body in. Additional soaks in shallow warm water for 15-20 minutes 2-3 times a week are helpful, especially during a shed.
Baby Leopard Geckos should be fed 5-7 small crickets or mealworms every day until they reach about 4 inches. Larger food should be offered every other day until they become full grown in about 10-12 months. Adults can be fed 6-7 large crickets or mealworms 2 to 3 times a week.
Can you overfeed a gecko? ›
Over feeding your Leopard Gecko can cause it to regurgitate its food and may cause lethargy. If you notice any of these issues with your Leopard Gecko, you should cut back on the amount of food you feed it and make sure not to feed it fatty insects (like Waxworms and Butterworms).How many times a day do you feed a gecko? ›
Juveniles should be fed every 1-2 days and adults 2-3 times per week. Insects should be lightly dusted with a phosphorus-free calcium powder before feeding.How often do you feed geckos crickets? ›
The frequency of your cricket feeding will depend on whether your Leopard Gecko is a baby, juvenile, or adult. Your baby Leopard Geckos will require more frequent daily feeds. In contrast, your juvenile and adult geckos must only be fed crickets approximately thrice a week.Are geckos good pets for 11 year olds? ›
Due to their docile, placid nature, Leopard Geckos really are a pet for all members of the family. They're happy to be held by children of all ages and will slowly walk across gentle hands. They're not aggressive by nature but like all animals should be treated with respect.Are geckos good pets for 10 year olds? ›
Here are some of our top picks for reptiles that make great first pets for kids of all ages. Leopard Gecko – These critters are passive, easy to handle and very hardy. They make a perfect starter pet for little hands ready to learn about what it takes to care for a living creature.What age do geckos lay eggs? ›
Female geckos have to be around a year old to be ready to start breeding. Interestingly, male geckos can breed from a much younger age. Most breeders wait until their female geckos are 2 years old to ensure healthy and successful offspring though.What gecko is the friendliest? ›
Leopard geckos are easy to care for, making making them one of the best pet lizards for beginners and children over the age of 8. With an average length of 9 inches, leopard geckos are easy to handle and have a gentle disposition.What gecko likes to be held? ›
Crested geckos have gentle dispositions that allow them to be handled, and they are hardy, making then a good choice for a first gecko. The crested gecko is an arboreal, nocturnal gecko with a wide body and large head.What is the loudest gecko? ›
The loud call of the Tokay Gecko is a sound that has startled many a sleeping backpacker in South-east Asia! Their explosive series of 'to-kay' croaks are especially loud at 3am perched on a bedroom wall a couple of metres from your head!Can geckos be lonely? ›
Since geckos are naturally solitary and territorial creatures, they do not get lonely if placed alone in a cage or left for some time away from their keeper. They much prefer having their food and heat to themselves rather than sharing it with another gecko.
Can a small gecko bite you? ›
They grow to a length of between 7.5–15 cm (3–6 in), and live for about 7 years. These small geckos are non-venomous and not harmful to humans. Most medium-sized to large geckos are docile, but may bite if distressed, which can pierce skin.What is the rarest gecko? ›
THE RARE PSYCHEDELIC rock gecko (Cnemaspis psychedelica) is found only on the tiny Hon Khoai Island in southern Vietnam's Rach Gia Bay – which spans 8 square km – and Hon Tuong Isle, an area of just 300 square metres.What is the easiest gecko to keep as a pet? ›
With proper husbandry, The leopard gecko is probably the easiest pet lizard to keep in captivity. The leopard gecko (Eublepharis macularius) is probably one of the easiest pet lizard to keep in captivity provided you follow their care requirements. No special lighting is required and their diet is fairly simple.What is the best pet lizard for a kid? ›
Leopard geckos are probably the easiest lizard to keep and are one of the best lizards for kids. They require basic care and are amenable to handling – but they're prone to bouts of speed, so watch for runaways. Bites are rare and usually preceded by squeaky vocalizations as a warning.How big can gecko poop be? ›
Gecko poop usually takes a cylindrical shape and is about 0.5 inches in length. Healthy poop is typically brown, but when it is passed out with urates, it would have some white color on it (that is because urates are white in color). Also, this reptile's excreta has a solid texture.Are geckos hard to keep alive? ›
These friendly creatures tend to be docile and easy to tame, as well as being easy to care for. Geckos are one of the most popular reptiles to be kept as pets – especially for beginners – and with good reason. They tend to be docile and easy to tame as well as being relatively easy to care for.Is it hard to keep a gecko alive? ›
Leopard geckos are one of the easiest reptiles to take care of. You'll need to keep a close eye on temperature and humidity, but leopard geckos can be easier to take care of than many more traditional types of pets, including some cats, dogs, birds, and fish.What is the oldest lizard still alive? ›
|Tuatara Temporal range: Early Miocene – present,|
Screaming or shrieking is a vocalization leopard geckos use when they feel threatened or afraid. It is a high-pitched screeching sound that usually lasts for a few seconds. Generally, leopard geckos scream in this way to startle or scare whatever or whoever they perceive is threatening them.Do geckos have feelings? ›
Generally, reptiles do demonstrate basic emotions. According to Dr. Sharman Hoppes, clinical assistant professor at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, the main two are fear and aggression, but they may also demonstrate pleasure when stroked or when offered food.
What happens when a gecko falls on you? ›
In their homelands of Southeast Asia they usually bring good fortune. If a gecko falls onto your right shoulder, that's a good omen, but falling onto your left shoulder is bad.How big can a common house gecko get? ›
Overview. Hemidactylus frenatus, Common House Gecko, is a lizard native to Asia. They grow from 3 - 6 inches (7.5-15 cm) long with rows of small spikes running down each side of the slightly flattened tail.How often should geckos be held? ›
Every gecko is different, but most people recommend for the best taming result to handle them at the least 15 minutes every day once they wake up. Though if you notice this stresses your gecko out then you should lower the times you handle and play with your leo.What size tank does a full grown gecko need? ›
An adult gecko needs a tank at least 60cm long, 40cm high and 30cm deep. To ensure bacteria doesn't build up, the tank needs to be easy to clean and well ventilated.Do geckos like being picked up? ›
The situation can stress them out and even make them lash out. As such, building trust with your leopard gecko before holding them is important. Also, understand that even after your leopard gecko gets used to you, they will still not want to be held all the time.How long can a house gecko go without food? ›
Many adult leopard geckos can go without food for ten days to two weeks because of the fat storage in their tails. It is completely normal for leopard geckos to go without eating for long periods. Unlike mammals, reptiles do not require food every day to survive, particularly during the winter.How often do house geckos eat? ›
Feed your common house geckos in the evening. Juveniles should be fed daily but adults can be fed every other day. Feed as much prey as your house gecko will eagerly consume over a 10 minute period.How often do geckos eat? ›
An appropriate diet may consist of commercially-raised crickets with smaller numbers of silkworms, roaches, mealworms, superworms, waxworms, and other live insects. Juveniles should be fed every 1-2 days and adults 2-3 times per week.Can I hold my day gecko? ›
Handling and Temperament
Males should not be kept together as they are territorial. Generally, day geckos don't like being handled, but experienced and careful gecko-keepers can successfully handle them. If day geckos feel threatened, they can slough off their soft skin as a defense mechanism.
Unlike many other lizards, including most other types of geckos, day geckos are active during the day. They are generally pretty fragile, and it is not a good idea to handle them since their skin is quite delicate. Handling can stress them out, and as a defensive mechanism, they may even drop their tail.
When should I hold my gecko? ›
Handling Tips. Once you've brought your gecko home, it's tempting to start playing with him or her right away. But wait 2 weeks after buying before beginning handling — your gecko needs time to settle into their new home, and handling on top of that can cause additional stress.Do geckos like tall tanks? ›
What is this? Another important consideration is the tank shape. Leos are ground geckos and prefer long, relatively shallow tanks, giving them a lot of floor space. Avoid tall and narrow tanks such as those commonly used for chameleons or other tree-dwelling species.Is a 40 gallon tank too big for a gecko? ›
While 20 gallons can be considered the minimum size, a larger tank is recommended for an adult Leopard Gecko. 30 gallons are a good start, but you can easily go up to 40, 60, or even 80+ gallons with your tank.Can a tank be too big for a leopard gecko? ›
Many other leopard gecko care resources recommend that leopard geckos should be permanently housed in a 10 or 20 gallon enclosure to prevent them from getting “overwhelmed” in a larger space, or stating that more room is simply “not necessary.” However, reptiles will utilize every inch of space that we make available ...