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What Factors Affect the Cost of a Gecko?

Alex Tree
Alex Tree

The cost of a gecko is more than the initial cost of the animal. Gecko owners also need money for an aquarium, crickets, and the occasional veterinarian visit. The aquarium can be relatively small, with width counting more than height. Young geckos should be fed every day, whereas older ones can usually be fed every other day. In addition, a gecko can become sick or injured like any other animal, so owners should have emergency vet care money on hand.

Geckos can be purchased at pet stores or directly from a breeder. This factor can significantly affect the cost of a gecko, depending on the prices of a specific area. Sometimes breeders are a lot cheaper than pet stores, because they are not selling geckos at a mark up. All geckos come from a breeder, but pet stores usually buy from mass breeders at a discount.

Crickets are often fed before becoming food for geckos.
Crickets are often fed before becoming food for geckos.

The total cost of a gecko includes the occasional visit to an exotic animal veterinarian. Geckos can get sick, accidentally injure themselves, or be injured by their owners due to poor handling. Weight loss, poor appetite, and labored breathing are common signs of a sick gecko. Generally, reputable breeders produce healthier animals than ones who operate solely to mass breed animals for overstocked pet stores.

Gecko aquariums and associated equipment contribute to the cost of a gecko. For most geckos to be comfortable, proper habitat accessories are required. For example, geckos need comfortable surfaces to climb and spend time on. A heat source, thermometer, and method of controlling humidity are also necessary to maintain a healthy habitat. When all of these habitat-related costs are combined, they represent a sizable portion of the total cost of owning a gecko.

A gecko aquarium needs sufficient lighting for the animal to bask in. The light bulb should be on 10 to 12 hours every day, which costs just as much as leaving another light on in the house. While the electricity costs of this alone are relatively insignificant month to month, it adds up. Depending on the gecko and its gender and overall health, the animal can live more than 20 years.

Mealworms and crickets are two common pet gecko foods. Compared to other pets, the cost and complication of feeding a gecko is relatively large. For example, it is recommended to feed the crickets before feeding them to a gecko because starving crickets are not as nutritious.

Frequently Asked Questions

What determines the price range for different gecko species?

The price of geckos varies widely depending on the species. Common species like the Leopard Gecko may cost as little as $20, while rarer species or those with unique morphs, such as the Crested Gecko, can command prices of several hundred dollars. Rarity, coloration, and pattern complexity are key factors influencing the cost.

How does the age and size of a gecko impact its cost?

Generally, younger geckos are less expensive than fully grown adults due to the increased care and time investment required to raise them to maturity. Breeders often charge more for adult geckos, especially proven breeders, as they are immediately ready for breeding and their physical traits are fully developed and visible.

Does the gecko's health and genetics affect its price?

Absolutely. A gecko with robust health and desirable genetic traits, such as unique color morphs or patterns, will be priced higher. Breeders invest significant resources in maintaining the health and lineage of their geckos, which is reflected in the cost. Buyers should always seek geckos from reputable sources to ensure good health and genetics.

Are there additional costs to consider when purchasing a gecko?

Yes, beyond the purchase price, new owners should budget for a proper habitat, which includes a terrarium, heating, lighting, humidity control, and substrate. Ongoing costs include food, supplements, and veterinary care. Initial setup costs can range from $100 to $300, with monthly maintenance costs varying based on the gecko's needs.

How does the breeder's reputation influence the price of a gecko?

Reputable breeders often charge more for their geckos due to their commitment to quality care, ethical breeding practices, and the provision of healthy, well-socialized animals. They may also offer guarantees on health and genetics, which can justify higher prices. Investing in a gecko from a respected breeder can ensure a better pet experience.

Can the gecko's color and pattern morphs lead to higher prices?

Yes, geckos with rare or highly sought-after color and pattern morphs can fetch premium prices. For example, the 'Lavender' morph of the Leopard Gecko can be quite expensive due to its rarity and popularity among enthusiasts. Breeders who successfully produce these unique morphs often set higher prices to reflect their rarity and demand.

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    • Crickets are often fed before becoming food for geckos.
      By: viter
      Crickets are often fed before becoming food for geckos.