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Sudden Death of Multiple Cresteds

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  • Sudden Death of Multiple Cresteds

    I am not new to keeping crested geckos and in all the years I have owned them I have had minimal issues with them. However, last night to my total shock I found five of my cresteds dead with no cause that I could see. They all seemed totally healthy 3-4 days before (I don't see every gecko every night- I sometimes feed/water them in the dark and they have large tanks). I am totally at a loss. They are all housed on the same shelf in separate tanks. They had dirt substrate and typical plastic plants and hides. They get heavily misted once a day and fed 3ish times a week with Repashy, their humidity and heat level has been fine and I try to keep the substrate damp as well. They also have small bowls of water. I feed them in bottlecaps that I wash and reuse. I even clean tanks with reptile safe cleaner. I have had this setup and this routine for 5+ years now and have never had any problems. My immediate thought was that a disease or parasite had spread through the tanks somehow but I don't know enough about that to be sure. If that was the case wouldn't I have noticed they were sick? Could it have been spread because I reuse food dishes or somehow in the way I clean the tanks? Is it possible there was something in the food itself, the dirt, or in the water? Another thing that came to mind is that my cats will sometimes sneak into the room and sit on the screen lids of the tanks (I try my best to keep them out and all the tanks have locks). Could the cats have brought some sort of bug in from outside that contaminated the dirt? I really don't think that heat or humidity was the issue either. I also have leopard geckos housed near the cresteds who seem perfectly healthy. I quarantined all the geckos anyways and put them in clean tanks on paper towels. I will be totally sanitizing any water and food dishes I give them for now to be safe.
    Does anyone have any idea what could have caused this? I am really in shock from how quickly and suddenly it happened. I have had geckos die but not like this.

  • #2
    First of all, I am sorry to here this happened, its never easy to loose a pet.

    I would start with getting necropsies of the animals, and fecals done on the ones that are still alive. Without looking inside the ones that have passed, and not getting fecals done, you really cant narrow it down as to the issue. Generally when you have sudden mass death it is usually due to coccidia which requires vet care. It will also require you to either switch to everything that you can throw out every other day, or completely sanitize every few days. Only thing that kills coccidia environmentally is ammonia and steam, so if that is the issue, youre going to be cleaning a lot :/

    Since it has been a few days, obviously you already did something with their bodies. Necropsies can be performed on animals but it needs to be done within 24 hours of death, and the animal needs to be kept in the fridge (not the freezer). So since that isnt possible, try and get fecals on your remaining animals done.
    lets just say I have a lot of stuff