Crested Gecko Substrate

Crested gecko substrate is one component of habitat setup that is variable and debated by many keepers. From paper towels to peat and commercial grade reptile carpet, choosing the right substrate for your crested gecko’s environment should be well thought-out.

Paper Towels

Many keepers choose to outfit their crested gecko habitat simply. Paper towels make a great substrate because they are easy to clean and replace, making enclosure maintenance a breeze. This type of substrate also benefits the gecko, for there is much less chance they will inadvertently consume it while eating.

Paper towels are the preferred substrate for young geckos, as it allows them to find their food easily and they don’t run the risk of consuming it and causing impaction. Young geckos should be started out in a small habitat and using paper towels can be beneficial in these environments.

Natural Substrate

substrate & flooringThere is a variety of natural substrates that can be used. Many prefer using peat because it holds moisture and helps keep humidity levels up. To avoid mold and mildew it is a good practice to place gravel under the soil for drainage. A layer of moss will also help prevent the crested gecko from consuming the peat while feeding. Feeding them from containers will also help reduce this problem.

Coco fiber is another great substrate that is widely used. It expands with water and when packed down well, provides a great surface for the crested gecko. Placing large pebbles on top of the coco fiber aids in inadvertent consumption of the substrate and makes for a very nice looking display.


It is very important that the substrate you use for your crested gecko is safe. Never use pine or cedar bark, as this can make them very ill. Make sure when using peat or potting soil that it is free from pesticides and other additives such as vermiculite.

Crested gecko substrate can range from paper towels to potting soil and commercial substances designed specifically for reptiles. Just consider the potential dangers involved with certain substrates and choose wisely.