Crested Gecko Morphs: The Colour, Pattern, And Gradient Of Your Gecko

Deepthi Reddy
Feb 27, 2023 By Deepthi Reddy
Originally Published on Nov 12, 2021
Edited by Lara Simpson
Fact-checked by Gowri Rao
crested gecko isolated on white background
Age: 3-18
Read time: 9.4 Min

The crested gecko belongs to the class Reptilia in the animal kingdom.

The scientific name of the crested gecko is Correlophus ciliatus or synonymously Rhacodactylus ciliatus. The crested gecko also goes by the name eyelash gecko.

The crested gecko is primarily found in the southern parts of New Caledonia, an archipelago in the Pacific ocean off Australia. The crested gecko boasts of being one of the most bred and widely accepted pet species of the gecko clan. Crested geckos have a long lifespan and are a hardy species of pet that can survive 15- 20 years. The crested gecko habitat ranges from tropical to terrestrial, with elevations ranging between 492 - 3280 ft (150-1000 m ) above sea level.

To give an overview on the subject of polymorphism visible in the crested geckos, it is a phenomenon where one or more varieties of the same species occur. The adaptation of the species, genetic variations, and genetic mutations can lead to the various patterns and color variations in a specific species. The differences may be attributed to their physical traits, metabolism, and developmental stages. The morphs are a great subject of interest for the breeders as the morphs are pretty popular in the pet trade.

If you found our article interesting, we have more fun articles for you on Kidadl. Would you please check our content on crested gecko temperature and crested gecko lifespan too?

What color will my crested gecko be?

Polymorphism has allowed the crested geckos to have a limitless number of variations in their color pattern and traits. The breeders take a specific interest in breeding the crested geckos from those in the wild and captivity. The result is breeders having unique colors and patterns of stripes, solid color, and raised scales in some morphs. So, let's get acquainted with some widely known morphs of the crested gecko.

Flame crested gecko, harlequin crested gecko, patternless crested gecko, dalmatian crested gecko, pinstripe crested gecko, creamsicle crested gecko, tiger crested geckos, Halloween crested gecko, and tricolor crested gecko are the more popular morphs encouraged by the breeders in selective breeding. So, what determines the color of the crested geckos bred by the breeders? Let's learn more.

The crested gecko morph results from intense breeding done in confinement by expert breeders. The current crested gecko morphs result from the refinement of traits developed after several attempts of breeding. There isn't any technical or scientific methodology to determine the color of crested gecko bred for new morphs. Two different crested gecko morphs can produce an offspring nothing like either of the crested gecko parents. That's how unpredictable the gecko morphs can get.

Does my crested gecko's color change?

Did you know that your little crested geckos are born with distinct colors on the body? Yes, it is true; the crested gecko is born with distinct colors on its body, either in red color or bright orange. Only after one year does the crested geckos' body reveal their specific morph patterns or trait. The trait of skin color may change patterns for particular reasons.

The crested gecko morph changes its body color for some precise reasons. Age is one determining factor for the crested gecko morph to change its body color. The stripes raised scales, which are nothing but a structural trait, and the patterns of line on the body get enhanced or diminished by the age factor of the crested gecko morph.

The mood of the crested geckos is also a determinant to see them fired up or fired down. This means they change color according to their reaction to their surroundings. When the crested gecko morph is excited, you can see a darker version of their base color. The base color comes back to normalcy when the crested geckos are fired down.

Color Variations In Crested Geckos

The different dark and bright color patterns that the morphs of the crested geckos can represent are immense. The crested gecko morphs, becoming a solid piece of interest in the pet world for each unique trait it represents is noteworthy. Let us consider some fact discovery in line with the solid color variations and the independent trait offered by each of these morphs.

The flame crested gecko morph always comes in a combination of base color and a contrasting color. We should note that the color combination of flame crested geckos' morph always refers to the base color at the start and the contrasting color at the end. For instance, red and yellow flame crested geckos would mean that the crested gecko has red as the base and yellow as a contrasting color.

Looking at a harlequin crested gecko, you can note that harlequin crested geckos have noticeable cream on their dorsal part and the sides. Harlequin crested geckos have a highly patterned body. A different morph to harlequin crested geckos can be a patternless crested gecko. A patternless crested gecko is as plain as it sounds. These cresties, called patternless, do not depict any color variation, pattern, or stripes. Patternless cresties can be found in color shades of yellow, orange, brown, or red.

The bi-color cresties, as the name suggests, have a double-tone color to their bodies. The head and the dorsal area in these bi-color crested gecko's patternless bodies may be darker but sometimes are in a lighter color too. The tri-color crested geckos' morph, as the name indicates, has three unique color tones to themselves. The tri-color crested geckos' morph may be termed so by the breeders for subjective reasons.

Some may contest that the tri-color crested geckos morph are not true morph varieties. The tri-color crested gecko morph may have a dark red or black base color with orange and solid cream contrasting the dark base color. Some tri-color morphs have darker shades of cream on the head and the line of their tails, such as the dorsal side.

morph crested gecko face closeup

Physical Variations In Crested Geckos

The subject of the physical variations in the crested geckos is much-researched. We will enhance our knowledge a little further here.

Creamsicle crested geckos, another set of harlequins with an orange base and cream color or white stripes on the head or their dorsal area. Breeders are now considering any morph showing a solid cream pattern to be creamsicle cresties. Creamsicle morph with their highlight cream color can be fascinating to watch.

Dalmatian spots refer to the black spots on the crested geckos' bodies, which may look like ink spots. The dalmatian spots become more prominently visible with the progression of age in your pet. Also, there is a morphing variety called white-spot, which is popular due to its white spots on the toes, thighs, and ventral sides. So watch out for those spots!!!

Pattern Variations In Crested Geckos

The pattern variations in the created geckos are an exciting topic to explore. Would you like to learn more? Here we go.

Tiger crested geckos have darker bands or stripes on their dorsal area and the sides. Brindles are the tiger cresties with more intense darker stripes on their dorsal side. Harlequins can display a vast amount of patterns, and the depth of patterns is considered based on pattern display from the tail to dorsal parts of their bodies. A lily-white crested gecko is unique as the name suggests it to have a distinct white pattern to its body. Blonde harlequins are the morphs where the gecko may depict a pattern running from its nose through the dorsal scales to the end of its tail.

Most Expensive Crested Gecko Morphs

Now that we know that breeders go head-on with their breeding techniques to breed the rarest of the crested gecko morphs let's find out which morphs are most sought after.

It was recorded that a black pearl crested gecko morph bred by the urban gecko was sold for $3,000. These crested geckos have a dark shade of black from head to tail with some solid white on the sides. Chocolate harlequins are also on the expensive side of the pet trade. Chocolate harlequins are placed in the $ 250 - $600 range, while the Pinstripe crested gecko will cost you about $100 - $430, and a dalmatian crested gecko will cost around $100 - $350.

Rare Crested Gecko Morphs

Now that we have seen the expensive crested geckos on the dock, where will we discover the cresties that are rare to find? Aren't you interested in exploring the list further?

Moonglow crested geckos, advertised to be all white, will feature first on this list as many breeders believe this to be one of the most difficult crested gecko morphs to obtain. Red harlequin pinstripes are another rare pinstripes harlequins to find. These crested geckos or harlequins could be dark red or have no dark colorations. These harlequins could sport 90% pinstripes to a maximum range; however, it's been a constant aim for the breeders to achieve 100% pinstripes on these harlequins.

Do you think green will be a rare color on crested geckos? Yes, rightly thought, the green flame is considered a rare morph to achieve too. The green flame crested geckos are in hues of dark olive or sometimes in pale green color variations. The rarity of the green flame is due to the unpredictability that a crested gecko will turn green when in an excited state.

Crested Gecko Genetics

Having seen so many crested geckos on our discovery list here, you may be wondering what brings around these plethoras of variations in colors, patterns, and the structural trait of a crested gecko? Let us get into the science behind crested gecko genetics here.

The broad outcome of the numerous morphs we see for crested geckos can be attributed to genetic factors. Several genetic factors like epigenetics, polygenetic, individual traits and the color expression on the layer of skins are essential to the breeding outcome. The incubation and aspects from the gecko's surroundings can affect the result of a morph breeding. The temperature, diet of a gecko, and water quality also affect how the genes express themselves.

Caring For Your Gecko

Now, if you have already decided to own up a crested gecko after going through all the information above, here we assist you with some tips as to how you can make your pet cresties best comfortable.

An enclosure for your pet crested gecko is quite essential for its safety. The size of the terrarium can range between 10-20 gal (45.4-91 l). Isn't it exciting to note that your little cresties do not demand a lot of space? It is necessary to keep the terrarium in a place where there is no direct sunlight. The crested geckos do not need any additional lighting or heating for good care. The optimal temperature for the terrarium of your cresties should be maintained between 72-78 F (22-25 C).

Another aspect is the substrate which is not a must for the juveniles. But the adults may need some plants on the substrate. At the same time, allow more space for your little gecko pets to move around. Fruits and insects are your cresties' favorite food; hence, kindly ensure you provide it in the right amount. Insects can be sprinkled with calcium supplements to ensure better health for your pet.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for crested gecko morphs, then why not take a look at what do crested geckos eat? or Crested Gecko Facts.

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Written by Deepthi Reddy

Master of Business Administration

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Deepthi ReddyMaster of Business Administration

With an MBA under her belt, Deepthi has discovered her true calling in content writing. Her writing repertoire is diverse, covering travel, movies, pet care, parenting, animals and birds, and more. Her joy of learning and creating has helped her craft well-written and engaging articles. When she isn't writing, Deepthi enjoys exploring new cultures, trying different foods, and spending quality time with her two children aged 7 and 12.

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