our lizards

In the spring of 2020 we decided to add lizards to our household. COVID19 had cancelled most of our spring and summer plans, so we thought we could start another hobby with the extra time we had.

We researched different types of lizards but kept coming back to tree monitors, specifically Green Tree Monitors, Veranus prasinus. These beautiful animals are known for…being challenging to keep. So we kept looking.

We looked at skinks, bearded dragons, chameleons, anoles, even snakes, but we kept coming back to tree monitors. We did come across the Green Keel-Bellied Lizard (Gastropholis prasina) which has similar behavior to Green Tree Monitors but come in a smaller package. After much debate, we ended up setting up two vivariums and keeping both!

Our lizard posts

A word on Green Tree Monitors (Varanus prasinus)

Please do not look at our collection of photos here of this beautiful species and run out and get one. Though we are new to lizard keeping, we have a decade of keeping a variety of highly specialized amphibians, and we’re willing to research and invest in proper husbandry for these (and all) animals that we keep.

  • Green Tree Monitors are expensive.
  • Green Tree Monitors are nervous, and crash quickly when stressed.
  • Green Tree Monitors need space (4ft x 2ft x 6ft minimum).
  • Green Tree Monitors need a well planted vivarium.
  • Green Tree Monitors have special humidity requirements.
  • Green Tree Monitors eat…a lot.
  • Green Tree Monitors will cost more to house than they did to acquire.
  • Green Tree Monitors will require an exotic animal vet.
  • Green Tree Monitors are shy, and you might not see them often.

There’s a lot of thought that has to go in to planning for, acquiring, and maintaining Green Tree Monitors. They are not a pet you should take on without being prepared to make a significant commitment and investment. They look awesome, and truly are a fascinating animal to keep, but do your research and be prepared to provide them with the proper husbandry requirements to ensure they thrive. They are an advanced species that will require a significant investment in time and money, but they are very rewarding!

Don’t forget about Gastropholis prasina

All that talk about our tree monitors, but we don’t want to short change our Green Keel-Bellied Lizards! Gastropholis prasina are a lot like small Green Tree Monitors, without the challenging care requirements. They reach a much smaller maximum size, so their housing requirements are not as demanding. They are robust, inquisitive little lizards that are full of personality. They have similar care requirements to the Green Tree Monitor, but they are a bit more forgiving in their husbandry demands. We will post about these adorable little guys as well.

  • Gastropholis prasina enclosure
  • Feeding Gastropholis prasina
  • Gastropholis prasina eggs!


We keep a variety of microgeckos from two genuses:

  • Sphaerodactylus nigropunctatus granti
  • Sphaerodactylus nigropunctatus ocajul
  • Sphaerodactylus rosaurae
  • Sphaerodactylus argus
  • Gonatodes ocellatus
  • Gonatodes vittatus
  • Gonatodes antillensis
  • Gonatodes fuscus

A great resource for information on microgeckos can be found here.

Sphaerodactylus nigropunctatus granti

Sphaerodactylus nigropunctatus granti, neat little gecko that patrols the upper areas of one of our larger dart frog vivarium helping control our stray fruit fly population. They are reclusive, but stunning when you catch a glimpse of them!

Sphaerodactylus nigropunctatus ocajul

Sphaerodactylus rosaurae

Sphaerodactylus argus

Gonatodes ocellatus

We expanded our micro-gecko footprint in the spring of 2022 starting with Gonatodes ocellatus, one of the largest micro-gecko species.

Gonatodes vittatus

Our male Gonatodes vittatus was an unexpected addition to our home, coming in as a freebie with a purchase of our other micro-geckos, but he is a charming little dude!

Gonatodes antillensis

We also added a pair of captive bred Gonatodes antillensis, another species of micro-gecko.

Gonatodes fuscus