Leopard Gecko Lighting

There are two schools of thought as to whether Leopard gecko lighting is needed; one says no, because these creatures are nocturnal anyway so why bother to give them light. The other says, yes, Leopard gecko lighting is necessary so that they still have something to differentiate between night and day.

Here are some options for lighting (or not) your pet’s enclosure.

1. Because these creatures need heating due to being cold blooded, you could combine heat and light. Many people recommend heat lamps to heat an enclosure and of course these emit light also, thus killing two birds with one stone. Use the heat lamp during the day and switch it off at night if you’re sure that the residual heat will be adequate. Alternatively, switch it off and use a heat pad beneath the enclosure at night.

2. If you use a heat pad alone, then you’ll need some sort of light during the day, as especially in the winter months, your home won’t have enough light for your pet to realise that it’s day time. When using a light in or near your gecko’s tank, make sure that it isn’t providing additional, unwanted heat.

3. To be able to see your pet at night when he’s at his most active, use a light that won’t confuse him into thinking that it’s actually daylight. A red or blue bulb is ideal for this as it won’t upset the gecko.

4. Set your Leopard gecko lighting on a time switch so that even if you’re not at home, there will be a regular cycle of light and darkness, say twelve hours light in winter and fourteen hours in summer. However, it’s best if you are at home when the lights go off as your pet will believe it’s time to go out hunting and will expect to find food. Don’t worry about your normal room lighting as the difference between the specific Leopard gecko lighting and your domestic lights will still be sufficient to signify the onset of darkness.

5. UV lighting isn’t necessary for these geckos, being naturally nocturnal, but it won’t do them any harm either as long as they have a rock or some other sort of shelter available. It certainly isn’t necessary for the absorption of minerals and vitamins as it is with some other sorts of lizard.

6. It is necessary for your pet to be aware whether it’s night or day as these creatures become lethargic and disorientated if left in the dark all the time.

I think that Leopard gecko lighting is necessary but do be careful of the extra heat it may provide and make sure that your pet has plenty of fresh water so that he doesn’t become dehydrated.