Crested geckos make great pets. Native to New Caledonia, these reptiles were thought to be extinct but were rediscovered in the 1990s.
They can grow between 15 and 25cm in length, of which 10 to 15 cm will be their tail. When well cared for, these creatures can live between 15 and 20 years in captivity, which means that females can lay a lot of eggs!
So, how many eggs does a crested gecko lay? A mature female (older than 2 years) who is healthy will lay two eggs every 25 – 45 days. They breed all year round but after between 7 and 9 clutches (typically 14 to 18 eggs) they will have a break for two to three months. Let’s look into crested gecko eggs in more detail.
Breeding crested geckos
Even novices can breed crested geckos successfully. Putting a female and a male in the same enclosure will result in breeding within days, sometimes even hours!
Before introducing a breeding pair, they both need to be sexually mature. For females, this means weighing at least 38 grams and being 18 months old.
Males can weigh less than this but they might not be interested in breeding until the age of 2. The natural breeding cycle of adult crested geckos lasts around eight or nine months. It starts in springtime and continues throughout autumn.
For more information about housing Crested Geckos have a look at my guide.
How many clutches of eggs do crested geckos lay per year and how many eggs does a crested gecko lay?
During the breeding season, females will lay two eggs every 25 to 45 days. So How many eggs does a crested gecko lay? Typically, they will lay 7 to 9 clutches in one season, which equates to around 14 to 18 eggs. When the female is about to lay her eggs, she seeks out a moist place.
Providing a box specifically for egg-laying is needed as this will mean you can keep track of eggs laid and take them out easily.
This egg-laying box could be an 8” x 5” x 5” plastic box with damp sphagnum moss inside to a depth of 4” inside. You might see the female dig in the moss of an evening.
You should check the next morning to see if the moss has been packed down where the holes were being dug. If so, this is a good sign there are eggs.
Can you tell if a crested gecko egg is fertilised?
Sometimes a crested gecko will lay infertile eggs.
Usually, you can identify which eggs are infertile by their texture and colour. They will look as though they’re dried out and become yellow.
If you incubate them, they will start growing mould. Sometimes, though, eggs that look infertile do hatch so you should never through any eggs away before you’re 100% sure – which will be after around 3 weeks of incubating them. Viable and fertile eggs are solid and white.
How long does it take for a crested gecko egg to hatch?
The incubation period for crested geckos varies.
After you have been incubating them for 60 days, you should check them more often. You will notice when they are ready to hatch because the egg might become dented or slit a few hours before.
Don’t be alarmed if it takes a hatchling between 12 and 24 hours to hatch, this is normal.
You should always avoid helping a hatchling to emerge and just sit back and observe.
You should never remove a hatchling until it is separated from its shell because they absorb nutrients from the yolk sac to keep them sustained for the first few days of life. Crested geckos don’t eat during the first few days after hatching.
You should keep them in the incubation box until they have shed for the first time.
How do you take care of crested gecko eggs?
How many eggs does a crested gecko lay, take care of them. When you have eggs to incubate, you’ll need to make an incubation box. This can be a plastic shoebox that is two-thirds full of an incubation medium.
This needs to be moist but not too wet that it drips if you lift some out. Popular incubation materials include vermiculite and perlite.
There are also specific materials made for breeding. The lid of the box will need to have between five and eight ventilation holes.
When you transfer your eggs into the incubation box, be sure to not rotate them from their original positions. They should be put down into the incubation material about a quarter of an inch.
Replace the lid and put the box somewhere cool and dark. A closet shelf is ideal.
To hatch crested geckos you don’t need a special temperature-regulating incubator; room temperature between 22 and 25°C is fine. If you incubate them at a cooler temperature, it will take longer for them to hatch – perhaps up to 120 days.
What should you feed your breeding crested geckos?
Leopard geckos need extra attention when they’re breeding. How many eggs does a crested gecko lay when giving good feed? They will lay around 14 to 18 eggs per clutch when giving good feed.
They should be provided with crickets three or four times a week and there should always be a source of mealworms in the gecko’s enclosure.
Any insects given shouldn’t be longer than your leopard gecko’s head and they shouldn’t be thicker than half of the width.
A balanced diet for crested geckos is essential and you should gut load your insects with hog or chick mash for 24 to 48 hours before you let your leopard geckos eat them.
Breeding leopard geckos also need to have extra vitamin D3 and calcium. You can provide a small bowl of supplements in one corner of its cage so that they can decide how much they want to eat.
Fresh water should be provided in a sturdy, shallow dish with a diameter of between three and six inches.
How should you care for hatchling crested geckos?
Once the crested geckos are entirely free of their shell, leave them in the incubation box until they have completed their first shed.
Typically, this is between 12 and 24 hours after they have hatched. After this, each hatchling should have its own enclosure (it should be no bigger than 20 litres in volume and be lined with basic paper towel).
Your hatchlings don’t need a complicated plant system or décor; a twisted vine and small plant are enough. Jar lids are ideal water and food dishes because they are easy for your hatchlings to feed and drink from.
You should mist twice a day and add moist hide to the enclosure so that the hatchlings are able to shed easily. This can be a plastic container with moist sphagnum moss inside and a hole cut in the lid. The hole needs to be large enough for the gecko to get in and out.
How many eggs does a crested gecko lay? Breeding crested geckos is fairly simple. However, you need to be a responsible breeder and make sure you have everything right before you begin.
I wrote a full and helpful guide to caring for baby crested geckos that you may be interested in reading
You can leave a male and a female breeding couple together all year unless you feel that the male is causing problems to the female.
Despite once believed to be extinct, the crested gecko is currently not considered to be an endangered species.
However, deforestation, predators (including introduced ones) and nickel mining are causing their numbers to dwindle in the wild.
Thankfully, being prolific breeders, we can have some confidence that their numbers won’t de dilapidated.