A leaf-tailed gecko terrarium can be made of either a glass or screen, depending on the ambient humidity where you live. Both have their own pros and cons, but both are excellent options. (An exception to this is U. phantasticus, which is particularly susceptible to dehydration, and should never be kept in a screen enclosure.)
Glass enclosures are recommended for keepers in dry climates (less than 60% ambient humidity) — for example, the ambient humidity where I live is often between 20-30%, so I use glass. Glass is easy to clean, and water droplets form on the walls where Uroplatus can drink them. However, glass can collect ugly mineral deposits over time from misting. These deposits will have to be periodically removed with straight lemon juice or a razor blade.
Personally I’m also partial to glass enclosures for leaf-tailed geckos because they’re able to climb on the glass walls using the sticky pads on their toes, better utilizing the enclosure’s vertical space.
Screen enclosures can work for keepers in humid climates (more than 60% ambient humidity). These are inexpensive and lightweight compared to their glass counterparts, but harder to clean. Water doesn’t cling to the walls well, but feeder insects can climb the walls, increasing usable hunting space for the gecko. On the downside, leaf-tailed geckos are unable to use their sticky feet on the walls of screen enclosures, so the amount of usable vertical space is reduced.
Different Sizes for Different Species
A leaf-tailed gecko terrarium can measure from 12”x12”x18” to 24”x24”x48”, depending on the species you plan to house. Hatchlings and juveniles can typically be kept in small Faunariums or very small terrariums like the Exo Terra Nano until they are large enough to move about confidently in their habitat.
Note that these recommendations are MINIMUMS. Larger is always better!
12x12x18 (30x30x45 cm) recommended for:
- alluaudi (single)
- pietschmanni (single)
18x18x24 (45x45x60 cm) recommended for:
- guentheri (single)
- sameiti (single)
- sikorae (single)
- aff. sikorae (single)
Our favorite 18x18x24 enclosures:
18x18x36 (45x45x90 cm) recommended for:
- henkeli (single)
- aff. henkeli (single)
- lineatus (single)
Our favorite 18x18x36 enclosures:
24x24x48 (60x60x120 cm) or 36″x18″x36″ (90x45x90 cm) recommended for:
- fimbriatus (single)
- giganteus (single)
Our favorite 24x24x48 or 36x18x36 enclosures:
**No data available for U. malahelo, U. fotsivava, or U. kelirambo, although I imagine they would do well in a 12x12x18 or 18x18x24, depending on size and activity level.**
Horizontal-style terrariums are recommended for members of the Ebenaui group, as their natural habitat is actually shrubs and they spend their lives closer to the ground (thus why they have evolved to look like dead leaves). A 10 gallon (20″x11”x13” or 51x28x33 cm) is the minimum for one member of this group.
- Introduction to Leaf-Tailed Geckos
- Leaf-tailed Gecko Shopping List
- Uroplatus Species
- Terrarium Size Requirements (YOU ARE HERE)
- Substrate Options
- Temperatures & UVB
- Humidity Requirements
- How to Decorate a Leaf-Tailed Gecko Terrarium
- What to Feed Your Leaf-Tailed Gecko
- Handling Tips & Body Language Info
- Common Diseases & Other Health Questions
- Additional Resources