Reptiles/Day gecko lump!


QUESTION: Aloha from Hawaii! I've got a gold dust day gecko (p. laticauda) who has been living with us since about November of last year. She is in a large Zoo Med screened cage about 36" tall and 18" x 18" width and depth. She has UVB on one side and heating lights left & right along with multiple perches. Her temps in the cage run from high 80's to mid 90's, misting is donee several times daily, and she is fed daily or every other day with a variety of things. She's eaten mostly gut-loaded crickets and freshly molted mealworms and pupae, along with moths, small butterflies, mashed fruit, and a treat of honey.

The food is dusted with Tetra Reptical, but we've cut back on it about a month ago when her calcium sacs got a bit big. They've since come down in size, but she now has a growth on her left side, just a bit forward of her usual sac. It is gel-like but firm, and looks like there's gravel in the sac (for lac of a better description). She has laid three pairs of eggs between last year and early this year, but nothing since. There are no real herp specialists here in Hawaii that work on smaller reptiles. Have you seen anything like this before? I read that artificial UVB can causes issues when given in conjunction with vitamins and calcium, so we've placed her on the lanai to get natural sunlight. Her color and activity seem normal, but I haven't seen her poop recently.

ANSWER: Hello David,

Greetings from the US!  LOL  How is the weather out in Hawaii?
The day gecko's are so beautiful.  That's a great sized tank for her, too.  
Which brand of UVB light do you use?  Is it a long tube bulb or a compact/coil type of light?
How high of wattage is the basking light?  
The Tetra Reptical, is that a combination of calcium with D3 along with vitamins?  Which vitamins are in that supplement?  
They can get overdoses of vitamins, namely vitamin A, sometimes D3, too.  
Is the gel like growth just on one side & it looks firm?  
Could an insect possibly have bitten her & caused an abscess, etc?
How long of a day & night cycle is she on?
Send some pictures of her if you can & if possible a quick picture of the growth?  
I haven't seen or heard of an extra growth on day geckos.  I have heard of the calcium sacs getting too large before though.  That's great hers have gone down also.  
Has she had any trouble laying her eggs before?  
It definitely sounds like you are giving a lot of food variety which is great!  I bet she loves being outside in the Lanai, too.  :-)

Let me know how she is doing.


---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Aloha and thanks for the reply. The weather is great out here, a little hot and humid, but perfect for the geckos and anoles I keep! I have a ReptiSun UVB CFL bulb rated at 5.0 with multiple basking lights of various wattages from 25-75. They are spotlight type bulbs, and proved decent heat. The Tetra doesn't list vitamin A, but it seems to be mostly calcium, V. D3, and phosphorus. I do have another supplement that contains vitamin A. The growth is on one side and feels firm, but not hard like ossified material. It doesn't appear to be infected, but looking at the pic I took today, I see a slight dark gray line on her lateral side, running from her ear hole to her L shoulder. I tried draining it, but Lidocaine just beads off. I did try lido jelly, but then found her skin was too elastic to properly puncture with a 25 gauge needle, so I let her be (I wasn't really trying to hard though, I stopped short of freaking her out). It doesn't appear to be an abscess, and nothing she eats really "fights". The timer for her lights is set to come on at 0620 and off at 1900, and she has had no problems laying eggs. This is definitely a separate growth from her calcium sac. Pic attached, I'll try to get a better one-- if I can catch her!

Hello David,

Great, I am glad the weather is so nice there especially for your critters.
We have had hot & humid weather too, but it is starting to go into fall soon.
Hm, that is interesting.  It doesn't sound like an abscess then, but could be
a cyst of some type.  If you can get it drained, that would be nice to see if
it had anything to drain out carefully.  Hopefully it isn't a pocket of infection.
She actually let you do all of that to her, how amazing!  LOL  The lidocaine does
help though so she wouldn't feel much of anything other than pressure.  
I'm glad to hear she hasn't had any issues with egg laying also.  
The Reptisun coil/compact light though is one I would recommend replacing.  It
has an odd spectrum, one that tends to emit low wavelength frequency of UVB,
which is near UVC emissions.  Plus, it doesn't have a very large area of output.
Can you get a Reptisun 10 tube bulb instead for her, or the Arcadia D3 12% tube
bulb?  Either one would be fine.
Ok, it doesn't sound like she would be getting overdosed on Vitamin A then, or
probably not D3 either.  Maybe try to find just a plain calcium supplement with
no D3 or phosphorus in it.  
I will look forward to seeing pictures of her also, after you chase her around to
get one of her.  I didn't see the picture attached, did you forget to attach it?

Talk soon.


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Tracie Kretzschmar


I can answer questions pertaining to health, UVB specifics, overall husbandry care & supplementation, analysis of blood test results, and behavioral problems & handling. I can answer questions pertaining to bearded dragons, leopard geckos, iguanas, uromastyx & ball pythons. I can answer adeno virus related questions in bearded dragons, & then specifically about the testing methods as well. I am beginning an Pogona Adeno Testing Society in 2008 which will help to begin to start some standardization within the bearded dragon colonies of the breeders who choose to test.


I have been working with bearded dragons for over 5 years now, as well as leopard geckos, too. I am currently doing rescues, as well. I hope to be able to educate people prior to them purchasing an exotic pet in order to avoid any health crisis with them.

I have a master's degree in sports medicine & physiology, & 1 year of vet tech schooling, & am currently working on a reptile certification through the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council.

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