Mniarogekko chahoua- Mossy Prehensile Tailed Gecko
Mossy Prehensile Tailed Geckos (Chahoua) are a medium, solitary beginner gecko. They are a sub-tropical, semi-arboreal gecko and are crepuscular. They have the ability to change the intensity of their pigmentation (firing up or down) according to temperature, light, mood, etc. There are different locales of chahoua, each with subtle differences in head shape, size and coloration.
Bringing Your New Pet Home
When you bring your new gecko home, you should already have a quarantine tank set up and ready to go. Place fresh water in a bowl in the tank, mist the tank and offer food, but be aware it is completely normal for them to refuse food for the first couple days, or even longer. You should keep this new gecko separate from any other geckos you may have for 90 days, to ensure there is nothing it could spread to your other animals.
Monitor its eating and fecals as they may be strange for up to a couple weeks, but this is due to a new diet, supplements, and environment. It is recommended you do not handle your new gecko for the first 24-48 hours and keeping it to a minimum until it has started eating on its own.
Always keep in mind, your new animal is in a new tank, with new decor/dishes/hides, and new faces watching them. They need time to become acclimated to it all. After this quarantine process, they can be safely introduced to their permanent enclosure if it's not already. Be sure to wash your hands before handling any other geckos during this time.
Depending on your need, there are a couple different ways to house a chahoua gecko. For a single gecko, a glass, front opening terrarium with a screen top or door would be the most appealing. The general rule of thumb, is to have 20 gallons of tank per gecko. Babies and juveniles require less space, but you will need to upgrade as they grow. Some keepers modify plastic tubs with screen to keep their geckos as well.
We highly recommend Zen Habitats 2'x2'x2' PVC Enclosure!
Research bio-active and naturalistic, planted terrariums for more advanced options!
Chahoua geckos thrive best on simple substrates such as paper towel, sphagnum moss, or eco-earth. Loose substrates should be used with caution; geckos can ingest it while hunting bugs and become impacted. If you use loose substrates, it is best to feed out of enclosure or by tongs.
Female chahoua geckos will lay eggs when they reach breeding age, even if they were never with a male. It is best to provide all female geckos with a lay box with loose substrate for them to lay their eggs and prevent egg binding.
Geckos by nature are solitary animals. In chahoua geckos, it is advised to keep both sexes alone. If you do choose to house more than one gecko together, more space is needed, with an additional 10 gallons of space per additional gecko. Adding more hides and decor will help prevent fighting. Males will fight with one another, and geckos of different sizes will bully and attack one another. Do not house males and females together unless you have researched breeding and are prepared for eggs and babies. Monitor females to be sure they are not picking on one another or one is not hoarding the food from the other.
Chahoua geckos come from New Caledonia, where temperatures rarely reach over 80 degrees F. However, they have a higher heat tolerance than crested geckos and thrive in slightly higher temperatures. A low wattage basking spot is appreciated. Monitor temperatures to be sure they stay between 78-82 degrees with a basking spot in the upper 80s'.Do not exceed basking temperatures of 85 degrees F.
Chahoua geckos are crepuscular, meaning they are active at dusk and dawn and through the night. They should be exposed to 10-12 hours of light per day. Reptiles benefit from the addition of UVB lighting to their environment. All lights should be placed on a timer so the gecko has darkness at night, when they are most active. Tropical UVB is recommended.
Since they are nocturnal and arboreal, they need to have places to hide from the daylight to sleep and climb. You will most often find chahoua geckos hanging out in branches or foliage, so decorate the tank heavily with fake greenery, branches, and decorate heavily with cork bark and cork rounds.
Humidity and Shedding
Chahoua geckos are a sub-tropical species, so they require higher humidity level of around 60-80% with dry periods. You can best achieve this by misting the enclosure twice a day, once in the morning and once at night. While it is good to offer a shallow bowl of fresh water, most geckos will not drink from bowls and instead prefer to lick water droplets off the enclosure walls and plants. Misting will not only keep the humidity levels up, but offer them hydration as well.You do not want the cage soaking wet, and should allow it to dry out some between mistings.
Chahoua geckos will shed their skin as they grow and regularly as adults. You’ll notice their color will appear dull when they are about to shed. Generally, the gecko will eat all of their shed, but you may see some of the shed skin in the cage. Some geckos will have unshed skin on their toes, we suggest letting your gecko soak in a shallow container of lukewarm water for a few minutes and you can assist the process by gently removing the skin using tweezers. Stuck shed is often an indication of humidity issues, so you can help this by misting more often or heavier.
Your chahoua gecko should have access to fresh, clean water in a shallow bowl at all times. Some will not drink directly from bowls and prefer to lick water from misting off leaves, but many have been seen drinking from bowls. Water can be treated with a commercial water treatment to remove any harsh chemicals from the water.
Chahoua geckos are usually open to being handled and with regular contact, can become very tame. Sit on the floor and let your gecko walk from hand to hand at their own pace. When handling your gecko, never hold or grab them by their tail. They have a natural ability to drop their tail as a defense mechanism. If dropped, the tail will grow back, but it may not look the same as the original.
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