Diurnal vs. Nocturnal Reptiles: Which is the Better Fit for You?

So, you want a pet reptile. Maybe you want a snake, or lizard, or gecko, or turtle, but you haven’t decided on the perfect species yet. Or maybe something’s already caught your eye. Whichever situation applies to you, it’s still a good idea to brush up on the differences between nocturnal and diurnal reptiles, and how that affects their needs for care.

What does diurnal mean? Diurnal means ‘day active’. You might also hear people talk about reptiles that are cathemeral, which is when an animal is irregularly active throughout both day and night.

What does nocturnal mean? Nocturnal means ‘night active.’ You might also hear people talk about reptiles that are crepuscular, which is a type of nocturnality where the animal is primarily active around dawn and dusk, rather than the middle of the night.

What time of day a reptile is most active affects the best time to feed them, handle them, and when you’re most likely to see them out doing their thing. Read about other differences between nocturnal and diurnal reptile care, as well as popular pet reptiles in each category, in my article published over at The Bio Dude: https://www.thebiodude.com/blogs/helpful-husbandry-faqs/the-differences-between-caring-for-diurnal-vs-nocturnal-reptiles

crested gecko, a nocturnal reptile

This article was written by Mariah Healey exclusively for use by The Bio Dude and originally published on December 1, 2021.

Related articles: