Beginner’s Corner: What to Feed Your Gecko

Posted on: September 12th, 2013 by JE

One of the best things about Tokay geckos is that they are not picky eaters. They eat almost every insect that they can hunt. In the wild, their diet includes bugs, crickets, worms, and roaches. They also eat small vertebrates such as small lizards, frogs, and pinkies. Following this natural feeding traits of Tokay geckos, you can conclude that you can feed them almost every edible insect that fits their mouth. But because of the scarcity or inaccessibility to some of these natural, Tokay gecko food, while in captivity, is quite limited.

Among the widely available Tokay gecko foods are crickets, mealworms, and roaches. These feeder insects are commercially produced in farms by reputable breeders and are sold in almost every local pet store. They are sold alive, canned, or frozen.

What to feed your gecko?

Crickets are one of the most common feeder insects. They are widely available and are cheaper compared to other insects. They are easy to raise and have very little requirement for storage and maintenance. Crickets contain good amount of protein and moisture compared to mealworms. They are also easier to digest.

Mealworms are the larval form of darkling beetles. Like crickets, they are also being mass produced by breeders and are a good alternative to crickets. They are also a good source of protein but not as much as crickets. They are quite hard to digest because of their hard exoskeleton. Young Tokay geckos may find them hard to digest. Nonetheless, they are good nourishment for geckos as they contain more fat that crickets.

Dubia Roaches are now becoming more popular as a good replacement for crickets and mealworms. It contains twice the protein of crickets and higher moisture content than that of mealworms. They also have higher fat content than crickets. Unlike mealworms, dubia roaches have soft exoskeleton. Your Tokay geckos will not have a hard time digesting them. Working with dubia roaches is also easier compared to other roaches. They cannot climb soft surfaces like plastic and glass so you don’t have to really worry about them wandering inside the enclosure.

Other Insects You Can Feed Your Tokay Gecko

Grasshoppers contain the most protein among the feeder insects. However, grasshoppers have very hard exoskeleton and are very difficult to catch. Your Tokay geckos may find them very hard to catch. Some gecko owners would remove the hind legs of the grasshopper before they are fed to their geckos to lessen their mobility. Also, make sure not to feed your gecko with very large grasshoppers for its size. Grasshoppers can pretty well put up a fight. Your gecko may suffer from terrible bites.

Waxworms contains the most fat and more protein than mealworms. They are ideal for recovering Tokay geckos or for those geckos that need to put up some weight. However, mealworms are highly addictive for geckos. Some geckos would refuse to eat other feeder insects after eating waxworms. It is discouraged to give them as staple food for your gecko as they contain very high fat which can lead to obesity. They should only be given as treats.

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