Gold Dust Day Gecko 101 – Care, Size, Lifespan, Diet & More

The gold dust day gecko is a relatively small reptile and has an adorable appearance. Despite its name, the gold dust day gecko is bright green. These reptiles are easy to care for and have a docile temperament. Making them a perfect fit for beginner reptile enthusiasts. This article will provide a comprehensive guide on gold dust day gecko. We will also talk about their care requirements and how to set up their enclosure.

The gold dust day gecko, also known as Phelsuma laticauda, is native to the tropical rainforest of Madagascar. Due to its bright and vibrant colors, this reptile has gained popularity in the reptile community. One of the most striking features of this reptile is its bright green color with blue and vibrant red markings on its body. The gold dust day gecko is relatively small and can grow 8-10 inches in length.


The first thing that you remember when speaking about the gold dust day gecko is its vibrant colors and unique characteristics. The reptile is bright green in color, with blue and bright red bands all over its body. These intricate patterns make the gold dust day gecko quite popular among the reptile community. One of its most magnificent characteristics is its tiny golden scales which give it the appearance of dusted gold.

The gold dust day gecko can grow up to 8-10 inches in length. It also has a slender body with a long tail. The long tail is used as bait to escape predators and helps the reptile climb surfaces easily. The gold dust day geckos are arboreal creatures and are usually found clinging to trees and walls using their adhesive pads. These pads are very strong and even allow the gecko to climb on smooth surfaces such as glass easily.

The gold dust day gecko is a diurnal creature, meaning they are most active during the day. These reptiles are filled with energy and love to explore and climb their surroundings. They usually do not feel comfortable being handled, but with proper care and handling, these geckos can get tamed. You should not host more than one gold dust day gecko inside a single enclosure as they exhibit territorial behavior.

Key AspectsInformation
Common NameGold Dust Day Gecko
Scientific NamePhelsuma laticauda
HabitatArboreal species found in trees and walls
SizeAn average length of 8-10 inches
LifespanAround 8 to 10 years in captivity
DietInsectivorous; primarily feeds on small spiders and other invertebrates
ReproductionTypically 2 eggs per clutch
BehaviorCan get territorial and are hard to handle
HousingAverage-sized enclosure with ample space to move around
Temperature75°F to 85°F during the day, slight temperature drop at night
Diet in CaptivityCrickets, mealworms, waxworms, and other small insects
HandlingAvoid handling
Health ConcernsRespiratory infections, parasitic infections, and metabolic bone disease
Care LevelIntermediate

What Does a Gold Dust Day Gecko Look Like?

Gold Dust Day Gecko

The gold dust day gecko is known for its visually striking appearance and vibrant colors. This gecko has a unique set of attributes that sets it apart from its cousin species. One of the most notable characteristics is its bright green appearance. The bright green coloration also helps the gold dust day gecko to camouflage in the wild and to escape predators. It also has blue bands and bright red markings all over its body. These intricate patterns make this reptile quite famous among reptile enthusiasts.

This gecko also has small golden scales which shine and shimmer radiantly, giving it the name gold dust day gecko. The reptile looks like it has been dusted with gold while it glistens in the sunlight. These scales add to the gecko’s overall aesthetic and make it stand out from other species.

These lizards have an elongated slender body with short legs and adhesive pads. The golden dust day gecko can grow up to 8-10 inches in length and are relatively small compared to other geckos. It also has a long tail that they use to climb surrounding and maintain balance. The golden dust day gecko is a phenomenal pet to keep, as it will be the center of attraction at every party.

Size and Growth Rate of Gold Dust Day Gecko

The golden dust day gecko is moderate in size and requires an average size terrarium to live in. The reptile can grow 8-10 inches in length, while the tail is longer than the body.  The long tail helps the gecko maneuver and climb its surroundings. It provides them with balance and also allows them to drop it if they feel threatened or in danger.

Talking about their growth rate, the gold dust day gecko has a relatively steady growth rate. Young dust day geckos are around 2-3 inches when they hatch from their eggs. Young geckos are known to grow rapidly and have frequently occurring shedding seasons compared to adults. This is due to their high metabolism rate when they are young. As they mature, their size increases gradually over time till they have reached adulthood.

It is also important to note that the growth rate depends on severe factors, such as genetics, diet, and temperature and humidity levels of the enclosure. Provide your gold dust day gecko with appropriate conditions and a healthy environment to promote rapid growth. The gold dust day gecko takes 1-2 years to grow to their full potential.

The temperament of a Gold Dust Day Gecko

It is important to know the temperament of these reptiles to provide the right care and ensure a positive interaction with your pet. The gold dust day gecko is known for its docile temperament and curious nature. These reptiles are easy to care for and have a minimum care requirement, making them a perfect fit for beginner reptile keepers.

The gold dust day gecko is an active and energetic creature that can tolerate human interaction. Proper care and gentle handling can tame these loving creatures. Although, it is important to remember that each gecko has its unique temperament and behavior. It is important to respect their boundaries and treat them according to their comfort level.

These lizards also exhibit territorial behavior and love to climb surfaces. Even though they are known for their territorial behavior they are known to coexist with their tank mates. Ensure the tank is of appropriate size and has enough hiding and basking spaces for both your reptiles.

You should provide a stress-free and hygienic environment to your gold dust day gecko to keep them happy and healthy. Providing a well-balanced diet and maintaining the right temperature and humidity levels will help keep your scaly buddy in a good mood.

Enclosure Setup for Gold Dust Day Gecko

It is important to provide a well-suited enclosure setup for your pet gecko. A hygienic and comfortable environment will keep your gold dust day gecko happy and healthy. Here are some of the key factors that you should have in mind while setting up an enclosure for your gold dust day gecko.

Enclosure Size

You should provide your gold dust day gecko with a medium-sized enclosure. These lizards are arboreal; you should provide an enclosure that presents plenty of climbing opportunities. Present your pet gecko with a vertically oriented terrarium that allows them to climb freely and explore their surroundings. The enclosure of dimensions 18 inches in length, 18 inches in width, and 24 inches in height should be fit for a single gold dust day gecko.

If you are planning on hosting more than one gecko in the same enclosure, you should opt for a bigger terrarium. This will provide your geckos their private space with plenty of hiding spaces and basking spots. You should also ensure there is no space in the crevices of the tank, as gold dust day geckos are known to escape their tanks easily.

Lighting Requirements

It is essential to provide your gold dust day gecko with UVB lighting and a heat source. UVB lighting plays a vital role in absorbing calcium in your gecko’s body and maintains overall health. Place reptile-safe UVB lighting inside the enclosure and ensure it only covers a part of the tank. Gold dust day geckos need cool and basking spots to regulate heat in their body.

Temperature and Humidity Requirements

It is crucial to maintain the right levels of temperature and humidity levels for your gold dust day gecko. There should be a temperature gradient of 75-80 degrees Fahrenheit on the cool side, while 85-90 degrees Fahrenheit on the warm side. You can use a tank heating pad or heating lamps to maintain this temperature gradient inside the tank. A thermometer can be used to note the temperature changes inside the enclosure and make changes accordingly.

The gold dust day gecko requires high humidity levels inside the tank. The humidity levels inside the enclosure should be around 60-70 percent at all times. To achieve this level of humidity, you can mist the enclosure using dechlorinated water 1-2 times per day. This will provide your pet gecko with the right humidity levels. Providing a humid environment also allows your gold dust day gecko to shed easily.

Editor’s Note- A hygrometer can also be installed inside the tank to note the humidity changes inside the tank.


Choosing the right substrate is important to provide your gold dust day gecko with a clean and safe environment. You should choose a substrate that helps maintain humidity and is easy to clean or replace. Coconut fiber, reptile carpets, and ceramic tiles are some safe substrate options to consider. Avoid using loose gravel and sand to prevent digestive issues such as impactions. You can also surround the base of the tank with leaf litter which will mimic the natural surroundings of the gold dust day gecko.

Cleaning Requirements

Regular cleaning and maintenance are essential for the health and safety of your gold dust day gecko. You should remove any uneaten food and feces after every feeding session. You can use a small woop or tweezers to remove the feces from your pet’s tank. This will prevent bacteria buildup and bad odor inside the tank.

You should also replace and clean the substrate after every 3-4 months. This will keep the enclosure in a hygienic condition and prevent your pet gecko from falling sick. Ensure to perform a deep clean after every few months. You can use a reptile-safe cleaner to disinfect the tank of any bacteria or diseases. Take out all the decorations and ornaments from inside the tank and clean it well. Place your gold dust day gecko back into its tank when it is dry and has been wiped with a paper towel.

You should also replace the water after every feeding session. Gold dust day gecko needs access to clean water at all times. Ensure to clean the dish utensil with lukewarm water consecutively to prevent bacteria from building up.

Diet Plan For Gold Dust Day Geckos

You should provide your gold dust day gecko with a diet consisting o all the essential vitamins and nutrients. A well-balanced diet allows your pet to stay active and promote rapid growth. Gold dust day geckos have a similar diet as flying geckos. They are insectivorous and generally consume small insects. Some diet options include small crickets, flightless fruit flies, small roaches, and worms. These insects should be of appropriate size to avoid digestive problems such as impactions.

You can also gutt-load these insects to provide the essential vitamin and nutrients to your pet gecko. Just feed these insects with calcium powder and vitamins before feeding them to your gecko. This will provide your gecko with all the necessary nutrients and prevent diseases. Sprinkling them with calcium powder is another great way of supplementing your pet gecko with all the essential nutrients.

You can also occasionally feed your gold dust day gecko with nectar from time to time. Nectar can be offered in a shallow dish bowl with water and honey mixture. You should only serve nectar as a treat as it is high in sugar content. You should also monitor the growth and eating patterns of your pet gecko to treat any health concerns as early as possible.

Crickets or roaches can be served as the staple food to your gold dust day gecko. Feed young geckos every day and allow them to eat as much in 15 minutes in every feeding session. Adult geckos should be fed every other day or every two days depending on their health and appetite. Young geckos require more frequent feeding due to their high metabolism and rapidly growing bodies. This growth rate slows down as the gold dust day gecko reaches the age of maturity.

MondaySmall Crickets
TuesdayFruit Flies
WednesdaySmall Roaches 
ThursdayFlightless Fruit Flies
FridayGut-loaded crickets
SaturdaySmall Crickets
SundaySmall Roaches 

Shedding Process in Gold Dust Day Geckos

Shedding is a naturally occurring process seen in many reptiles. The gold dust day geckos undergo a regular shedding process that allows them to grow and maintain the health of their skin. Shedding allows your pet gecko to shed its old and weather-out skin and replace it with a fresh one. Some signs of shedding include a loss of appetite, pale appearance, and fatigue. Your pet gecko might also try to seek out humid spots inside the enclosure. Present them with a shallow dish bowl to soak in and spray the tank with water to maintain humidity levels.

You should never pick on loose skin or patches on your gold dust day gecko. This might cause an infection and prove to be fatal for your pet. Provide them with a humid and comfortable environment to help them through this shedding process. You can also treat them with some nectar to support their shedding process journey.

During the shedding season, your pet gecko will try to rub off the shed skin on logs and rough spaces. Ensure there are enough hiding spaces inside the enclosure and minimize handling. The shedding process can be stressful for your gold dust day gecko. Provide them with a hygienic and comfortable environment to help them throughout the entire process.

How to Identify the Sex of Gold Dust Day Geckos?

It can be challenging to identify the sex of your gold dust day gecko, especially at a young age. Although, there are some physical characteristics and traits that can help you deduce the sex of your pet gecko. The size of your pet can tell you a lot about their sex. Male gold dust day geckos are known to be bigger than female geckos. They have larger heads with long tails that can distinguish them from female geckos.

Male geckos are also brighter and have more vibrant markings compared to females. This difference is more visible around the breeding season. Adult male geckos also have pre-anal pores, which are absent in the case of females. These pores are near the vent region and might not be visible in all males. Male geckos are also known to exhibit territorial behavior, especially during the breeding season. You should visit a trained vet to confirm the sex of your gold dust day gecko. 

How to Handle a Gold Dust Day Gecko?

It is crucial to correctly handle your gold dust day gecko, as it might lead to an accidental bite. Gold dust day geckos do not like being handled. Although with proper care and gentle handling, they can get used to human interaction. The first thing that you should do is let your gold dust day gecko get used to the enclosure before handling them. After a few days, if they are ready to be handled, wash your hands and wipe them with a paper towel. Hold your pet gecko gently and avoid any sudden movements.

You should never apply pressure while handling your gold dust day gecko. If your pet gecko tries to run or hide from you, then you should respect its boundaries and try handling them another day. You should also avoid handling it during the shedding process, as it can cause stress and discomfort. Gold dust day geckos might not be the most social creatures but they can get used to human interaction with constant care and nourishment.

Common Health Issues in Gold Dust Day Geckos

The gold dust day geckos are hardy reptiles and do not suffer from many health concerns. It is important to know about common health issues in gold dust day geckos so you can notice their signs and seek proper treatment. Some of the common health issues in geckos include respiratory infection, metabolic bone disease, and parasitic infection.

Poor ventilation system inside the enclosure and inadequate temperature and humidity levels can lead to respiratory infections in your pet geckos. Some of the symptoms of respiratory infections include breathing difficulty, nasal discharge, and mouth breathing. You should seek the help of a trained veterinarian to get rid of such health issues immediately.

Parasites such as mites and worms can infest themselves on your pet gecko’s body. Provide your gold dust day gecko with a clean and hygienic environment to avoid such health issues. Change the water and uneaten food after every feeding session to avoid bacteria building up inside the enclosure. Regular fecal matter exams can help you spot such health issues earlier and seek expert advice on them.

Inadequate calcium and Vitamin D3 can lead to metabolic bone disease. Provide your gold dust day gecko with a diet rich in nutrients and vitamins. You can also gut-load the insects before feeding them to your pet gecko. This will deliver all the supplements and avoid health issues such as MBD. It is important to seek a veterinarian’s help if you feel anything is wrong with your pet. They will be able to detect the issue quickly and help you get rid of it immediately.


How much does an average gold dust day gecko cost?

The cost of a gold dust day gecko depends on various factors such as age, size, and health. The average cost of a gold dust day gecko is around $150-$350. Although, you should also know that there ongoing costs, such as the cost of food, supplements, etc.

Are gold dust day geckos dangerous?

The gold dust day gecko has a moderate temperament and will not instigate a bite until provoked or under stress. Avoid, handling your pet gecko if it is stressed or trying to run away from you. You should also handle them gently and never hold them by their tail, as it can lead to an accidental bite.

Final Thoughts

The gold dust day gecko is a magnificent reptile to house as a pet. They have a moderate temperament and minimal care requirements. Making them a perfect fit for intermediate reptile keepers. 

Provide them with a comfortable and hygienic living space to keep them healthy and safe. Ensure the enclosure has the right temperature and humidity levels to promote its rapid growth. If anything feels wrong or you notice any sudden changes in your pet seek the help of a vet immediately.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *