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Gold dust day gecko
- Phelsuma laticauda

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The Gold dust day gecko is commonly known as the mascot of GEICO Insurance, and also the main character of the video game series, Gex.
Gold dust day gecko
A Gold dust day gecko (Phelsuma laticauda laticauda) in Kona, Hawaii – Pharaoh Hound, CC BY-SA 2.5, via Wikimedia Commons



Native to northern Madagascar and the Comoros, currently it is also found in the neighboring islands, the Seychelles and Hawaii.


With a head-torso length of up to a few 5 cm., the Gold dust day gecko is one of the smallest representatives of its species. The color of the body is a light green, 3 red stripes on the back appear to be applied with a brush. The golden, shiny scales of the neck and front of the back give it its name. The eyes are “painted” Turquoise.


The Gold dust day gecko is often found near settlements. It inhabits various tree species, larger plants such as deciduous trees, coconut trees and other palm trees, sisal agaves, bananas and houses. It shares its habitat with the dull day gecko (Phelsuma dubia).

This species feeds on insects and other arthropods. They also tastefully eat sweet fruits, pollen and nectar.

Males of this species of Day gecko can behave quite aggressively. They do not accept other males in the vicinity.

The "Gold dust day gecko" in captivity

The Gold dust day gecko has been raised in the care of humans for generations and, of course, you always have to use the pups.

With the right care and accommodation, the Gold dust day gecko is a grateful pet that gives a lot of pleasure to its owners. But, the conditions and needs of these animals mentioned here must be met. Next we want to show you some special characteristics of day geckos in general for their successful care in the terrarium. Here, animal welfare comes first.

Terrarium measurements

The terrarium for him Gold dust day gecko must be of sufficient height, since it is an animal that lives in trees. As a key to the size of the terrarium we recommend calculating with the head-torso length of the animal. The size of the terrarium is calculated as follows for non-adult animals:

  • Terrarium floor space: Four times x three times the head-torso length of the animal.
  • Height of the terrarium: Four times the head-torso length of the animal.
  • Observe the growth of the animal in the coming months (fast-growing animal/slow-growing animal) For adult animals (of legal age).

    As standard measures it is advisable a terrarium of 60 x 40 x 80 cm. (for 1-2 animals).

    Terrarium decoration

    The Gold dust day gecko is an excellent climber, you are almost never seen on the ground. Various cork branches, cork tubes and bamboo shoots have a decorative look and provide the animal with a space to walk, including the coveted spot for sunbathing under the point of ultraviolet light. As such, place a branch or root at the right distance from the light source so that the right temperature is created in it. They will also willingly accept some vertical climbing opportunities.. It also, the terrarium must be well decorated with plants. Artificial plants are a practical option in this case, as they can be easily cleaned of droppings.

    The suitable substrate is the bark bed and earth of the terrarium. Some moss cushions are decorative and regulate humidity. Droppings and food scraps should be removed daily.

    Temperature and lighting of the terrarium

    The Gold dust day gecko inhabits tropical habitats.

    Like the reptiles are warm-blooded animals, you have to simulate their natural habitat in the terrarium: temperature and humidity. This is achieved by various heat/light sources and water misting/spraying. (sprinkler system).

    One thermometer/hygrometer allows the caregiver to control these values. Animals have excellent eyesight and visual acuity. Depend on sufficient lighting. So, It good lighting is mandatory of the terrarium. They also need a sunny spot in the terrarium. This is created by the spot lighting, that provides light, heat and UV rays. The highest quality products are good enough here, because only they are equal to the natural light of the sun. The Gold dust day gecko see the colors in the ultraviolet range, so they can't perceive their surroundings normally without adequate light. It also, only an optimal supply of UV-B light provides enough vitamin D3 for young animals to grow optimally and adults to also be in top shape and display their bright colors.. We recommend the JBL L-U-W Light, which is available in different powers and in the version “Desert” or “Jungle“. This type of lighting provides light, heat and UVA/UVB rays.

    Terrarium Gecko golden diurnal
    Terrarium “Gold dust day gecko” Exoterra

    As a caregiver, you can get an especially good climate (and easy to control) using a heating mat under part of the floor of your terrarium. Although the Gold dust day gecko does not go down to the ground to warm up, yes it heats the basic temperature of the high terrarium -which by design is similar to a fireplace- from below. These terrariums usually have too low temperatures in the lower half of the terrarium outside of summer., so the fry have a hot back and a cold belly.

    The heating mat must be accompanied by a thermostat. In this way, always get the right climate, as the heating mat turns on automatically when needed. A plus point is the more favorable energy consumption in terms of the environment, since terrariums operated in this way not only require lower power for point lamps, but also, usually, fix themselves with less energy. For uniform lighting of your terrarium as decoration of your living space, we recommend the LED lighting across the entire terrarium. Light and heating sources are always turned on and off at a daily rate using a timer, 14h on, 10h off.


    The Gold dust day gecko is a fast and agile hunter. The feeding insects (crickets, domestic crickets, grasshopper, etc.) they are always sprinkled with mixtures of vitamins and minerals. This is the only way to avoid irreversible deficiencies, which can often lead to serious illness or even death in young animals and pregnant females, for example.

    Feeding animals must always be adapted to the size of the Gold dust day gecko. Feed only insects that will be eaten directly. Otherwise, feeding animals would disperse around the terrarium, they would hide away and get rid of the attached vitamins/minerals – the result is malnutrition and malnutrition despite food supplies.

    It also, to the Gold dust day gecko in nature they like to lick overripe fruits and nectar. With “Exoterra Day Gecko Food” small glasses already prepared with a suitable food porridge are obtained. Not offered on the ground, but permanently in the so-called “cupholder” at a high altitude.

    Social behavior and reproduction

    The Gold dust day gecko can be maintained individually, in pairs or in a group constellation of one male with several females. Males are always incompatible with each other.

    Females of the species “Phelsuma” put 1-2 eggs after a few 28 days, until 5 times a year. Some species stick eggs to the substrate. The eggs quickly harden in the air and the females of the “kind of glue for eggs” stick 2 eggs each. They like to do it in small cavities like bamboo canes or cork tubes..

    The Gold dust day gecko puts up to 5 pairs of eggs per year, this species uses the indentations of bamboo leaves and tubes or similar cavities. At a constant temperature of 28°C, the colorful dwarfs hatch after a few 40-45 days with a size of something less than 60 mm.


    It is commonly known as the mascot of GEICO Insurance, and also the main character of the video game series, Gex.

    Thanks to the special adhesive foils on your fingers, the Gold dust day gecko not only moves on the smoothest surfaces, but even clings to the glass upside down without problems. In doing so, develop true superpowers through so-called adhesion: thanks to their feet covered with billions of fine hairs, make use of Van der Waals forces and electrostatic forces.

    On the sides of the back of the head have small “calcium sacs”, which serve females to store calcium in preparation for egg formation.

    In the wild, guarantee their survival against predators by wagging their tails and “moving in a startled way”. If a hunter grabs them by the trunk, the skin sheds and the Gold dust day gecko escape. Tail and skin regenerate in case of emergency.

    For sale "Gold dust day gecko"

    The price of a "Gold dust day gecko" at the exotic animal market, bred in captivity, ranges between 80 – 100 EUR.

    Videos "Gold dust day gecko"

    Phelsuma Laticauda

    Gold Dust Day Gecko - Phelsuma Laticauda

    Alternative names:

    1. Broad Tailed Day Gecko (English).
    2. Gecko diurne à large queue, Gecko diurne des îles, Gecko poudre-d’or, Gecko vert à trois taches, Phelsume poussière-d’or (French).
    3. Goldstaubtaggecko (German).
    4. Gecko Poudre d’Or (Portuguese).
    5. Gecko diurno del polvo de oro (español).

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