Breeding & keeping info

The breeding of Giant leaf tailed gecko ( Uroplatus giganteus ) at BION Terrarium Center

by Anna Ivanuna & Lilja Krivosheeva

phoca thumb l img 5562 phoca thumb l img 5563

Preface

Uroplatus giganteus inhabits primary mid-altitude rainforests  at the north of Madagascar and is well known from the national park Montagne d’Ambre.

For many years this species was considered as “white eyed” subspecies of Uroplatus fimbriatus but  was descrided as the new species in 2006 (BYGlaw, Kosuch, Henkel, Sound & Bohme). As the matter of fact both species are resemble each other but also have the morphological difference. Apart of U.fimbriatus U.giganteus show at the night white eyes with red lines.

According the name “giganteus” – it is  the largest of all existed Uroplatus species for today.

The basic color of U.giganteus could varied from  grey till dark orange with brown. The babies usually show a  light grey coloring .

IMG 0134 Uroplatus giganteus 2 UNS  8 см-выход от 9.09.2014 IMG 2595

For November 25, 2014, we have 4 adult males, 4 adult females and 2 juveniles 1 year old as our breeding stock. + 10 eggs in incubator. For the moment 9 U,giganteus are hatched in BION Terrarium Center.

The details of keeping

Cages: For adult pairs  we are using  90х65х120 cm glass terrariums with two ventilation’s panels on top and below front side of each cage.

Substrate: Large pieces of  oak bark. For babies we are using  30х30х30 cm glass terrariums. Young geckos are  kept one by one. With the growth of animals we put the min larger cages.

Keeping adult Uroplatus  giganteus in BION U.giganteus in BION                            

Substrate: small pieces of oak bark

Decoration: We always  settle large vertical and horizontal branches for adult species and smaler size branches – for babies; artificial lianas; sometimes -  live plants .

Diet:  For adults: large roaches, locusts, crickets,snails. The size of insects & snails should be not less than 2.5 cm. Food is provided 1-2 times per week by 1-2 insects or snails per head

For babies: roaches, locusts, crickets. The size of insects is always correspond with gecko  size. Food is provided 3 times per week by 3 insects per head.

Lighting :  Full spectrum  lamp is providing on a regular base;  Light duration - 10 hours per day from all year round except  2 winter months.  

Heating: 40 watt spot lamp, temperature in a  basking place – maximum  29°C. During 2-5 hours at winter time (depends on the temperature in the terrarium).

UV: Full spectrum Zoo Med lamp “Reptisun 5 UVB”; 1-2 hours per day.

Temperature: day  - 24-26°C (basking place - maximum 29°C), night  - 20-23°C.

Humidity: 60-80% is achieved by spraying cage & decorations 2 timesper day.

Mineral supplements: The dish with  Calcium with D3(powder) is provided on a regular base. 

Breeding

Males and females could reach their sexual maturity around 2.5 years.

We keep adult lizards in pairs (1:1).

One female makes 3-5 clutches per season.

The clutch consists of 1-2 (more often 2) eggs.

ur.giganteus    10.06.2014 ur.giganteus    10.06.2014img 0015

In average 1 female gives up to 6 fertile eggs per season.

Pregnancy lasts about 30-50 days.

There are about 30-50 days between two clutches.

The incubation period is around 3.5-4.5 months.

We try incubating eggs in two temperature ways to see how it will affect sex of newborn lizards:

-         First way : day  - 24-25°C, night - 22-23°C;

-         Second way : day  - 23-24°C, night - 21-22°C                            

The humidity levelof  should be around 75-85% (a drop of water  appears on the surface of vermiculate after pressing it by fingers).

Breeding statistics:

We got first clutch of 2 eggs in July 2013 from a single female. Hatchling  occurred in November 2013.

In 2014 we got 5 clutches from 4 females, including 25 eggs total (18 fertile + 7 unfertile)

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For the moment 9 babies are hatched. Other eggs are still in process of incubation.

 IMG 6473 phoca thumb l img 0407

Keeping offsprings: 

The size of  new born lisards are  about 9-11 cm, including tail. According to our observations, if a baby is born smaller, it usually  don’t survive.

Healthy babies grow well adding by 1-1.5cm to their size each month taking into consideration the increasing cage dimensions  in the process of growth (size of terrarium should be changed every 1.5-2 months).

Veterinary issues:

Rickets (deformation and softening of the bones) may develop in juveniles and adults in case of wrong care. 

In this case the exposure of UV should be increased (“hard” UV over than 280nm during 2 minutes every other day until improvement)

Also the dose of calcium should be increased (liquid calcium gluconate can be offered with drinking by 2-3 drops from a syringe 2 ml every other day until the condition improves).

Mouth rot occurs when keeping at low temperatures. For treatment we use Vitamin C (orallyby 1-2 drops from a syringe 2 ml every other day), Dioksidin (dioxydinum) solution & veterinary ointment “Mastidek-A” (applying to jaws with a cotton swab). 

Sources: 

Frank Glaw - Miguel Vences. 2007: Field Guide to the Amphibians and Reptiles of Madagascar. Vences & Glaw Verlag GbR 3rd Edition. 496 pp. Germany

Sacha Svatek and Susanna van Duin. 2001. Leaf-tailed geckos – the Genus Uroplatus. Brahmer-Verlag, 161 p. Germany

 http://www.arkive.org/uroplatus/uroplatus-giganteus/

http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/172756/0

http://wondersofnature.forum.com.kz/viewtopic.php?id=15

http://www.uroplatus.org/

http://translate.google.com.ua/translate?hl=ru&sl=en&u=

http://www.uroplatus.org/&prev=search

http://geckophilia.com/forums/gekkony-afriki-madagaskara-i-prilezhaschix-ostrovov.37/