Blue Crested Gecko – Real or Fake?
Crested Geckos are colorful pets. They come in so many morphs, including Bi- and tri-color, Pinstripe, Harlequin, Tiger, Spotted, and so on. And let’s not forget the variety of patternless, solid color Geckos on the market— we’ve got olive, cream, yellow, orange, red, chocolate, albino, solid black… But what about blue?
You don’t see many if any Blue Crested Geckos around. But if you were to dig, you’d find a few interesting pictures on the obscure corners of the internet (and by that, I mean Pinterest). So, are these pictures real, or just a hoax? Why aren’t these rare blue Crested Geckos more popular? Let’s find out!
Are Blue Crested Geckos Real?
Crested Geckos come in many color morphs. However, a true blue morph is very unlikely. Unlike other Geckos, Crested Geckos lack blue pigment cells. This means that Crested Geckos can’t be blue, or any other color that requires blue pigments (think purple or green). Even the green Crested Geckos you see aren’t actually a true green (a mixture of yellow and blue), but a dirty yellow.
Still, you can see pictures of blue Crested Geckos online. Some of these Geckos are even for sale! So, what’s up with that? From my observations, there’s either some confusion or some misleading advertising going on.
These “blue Crested Geckos” sometimes come from inexperienced breeders or other third-party sellers. What you see being advertised is actually not a Crested Gecko, but a similar-looking species. If you see a blue Gecko without the signature crests, you’re dealing with a mislabeled species.
Other times, you might be getting the real deal, kind of. There are indeed Crested Geckos that appear blue. But they aren’t. These “blue” Geckos are actually Axanthic Geckos. Their skin is usually a light or ashy grey. It just appears blue depending on the lighting and other surrounding colors. It’s like a cool optical illusion. Nobody will blame you for mistaking the colors.
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What is an Axanthic Crested Gecko?
An Axanthic Crested Gecko is just one of the many Crested Gecko morphs. Such a Gecko lacks all true color pigments. Instead, it only comes in black, white, or different shades of gray. So, an Axanthic Crested Gecko is just a colorless Crested Gecko.
This morph results from a genetic mutation. This genetic mutation removes the Gecko’s ability to create yellow or red pigments. So, you get no yellow, no red, no orange, no cream, no “green”, and no other mixed colors.
That’s not to say these Geckos look boring. They don’t! They still come in a variety of interesting patterns. The pure black and white colors create strong contrasts you don’t see in other morphs. You can even get beautiful, fully-white specimens like the Moonglow Axanthic Crested Gecko.
But grey Axanthic Geckos are by far the most interesting. Their grey skin reflects the light in such a way, that it almost seems like the Gecko is changing color even when not fired up. So, such a Gecko can appear anything from pale blue to purple.
How do you get an Axanthic Crested Gecko?
Axanthic Crested Geckos are pretty rare and hard to come by. This is certainly not a species you’ll find in an average pet store. This morph only hit the market sometime in 2014 and became more popular in 2018. Very few big-name breeders exist up to date. And depending on your location, you might not be able to find any at all.
From what I could find, there are at least two professional breeders that sell this morph. “Altitude Exotics” and “Wild Things” are household names. Both of these companies are US-based and they offer extensive Axanthic Crested Gecko lines.
However, even these professional breeders don’t have lots of specimens for sale at all times. As you can imagine, there’s a high demand for these beautiful Geckos. But breeding them is a lengthy and costly process. So, you might have to wait until the pets are back in stock.
How Much do Axanthic Crested Geckos Cost?
The prices vary quite a bit, but most are expensive. If you buy from experienced breeders, your Axanthic Crested Gecko might come with a $3,000-$8,000 price tag. It’s a lot, but you’re also guaranteed that your Gecko is truly an Axanthic morph.
Note that this isn’t even the most expensive range. These Geckos sell for even more, depending on their traits and patterns. In 2021 alone, the second most expensive Crested Gecko sold was a $20,000 Axanthic, sold by Altitude Exotics.
I’ve seen relatively cheaper Axanthic Geckos selling for $700-$1,600. These are usually older specimens sold by their previous owners. Not that this option is budget-friendly, but you can still cut costs a lot if you buy an older, previously-owned Gecko.
3 Real Blue Gecko Types
Blue Crested Geckos might not be a thing. Grey Crested Geckos come close; they can appear pale blue or purple under certain lighting.
But there are also real blue Geckos out there if you want the authentic experience. Blue pigmentation is pretty rare in Geckos, but the following species make a remarkable exception:
– Blue-Tailed Day Gecko
The Blue-Tailed Day Gecko is also known by the scientific name Phelsuma cepediana. This Gecko species is super popular and in high demand due to its striking bright coloration. The exact shades differ, but this species usually has a greenish-yellow underbody, and a rich blue tail, head, and back.
This Gecko also has multiple small reddish splotches spreading across its face and back. It’s a cool combo; no wonder these Geckos are so sought-after. They’re also pricy. One specimen will cost you around $100-$200.
– Electric Blue Gecko
This species is also known by the scientific name “Lygodactylus williamsi”, or by the common names “Turquoise Dwarf Gecko” and “William’s Dwarf Gecko”. The Electric Blue Gecko looks exactly as it sounds. Males have a bright, deep blue coloration.
The color is so rich it pops up instantaneously. You could say it’s…electrifying. There are no other distracting splotches or patterns on the back. Just pure, unadulterated blue.
Sadly, this is a critically endangered species. You can find captive-bred specimens, and that wouldn’t be a problem. However, many sellers distribute wild-caught Geckos and falsely label them as captive-bred. This species can cost anywhere between $200-$900.
– Yellow-Headed Gecko
The Yellow-Headed Gecko (scientific name “Gonatodes albogularis”) is a small Gecko species native to Central and South America. This species is not endangered, and it’s also quite easy to find. As the name suggests, this Gecko has a yellow head; the shade can range from pale yellow to a deep bright orange tint.
The rest of the body is deep, dark blue. This creates a sharp contrast that’s hard to miss. By the way, this Gecko usually measures up to 3.9 inches at most. That’s for a full-grown adult. And usually, the maximum size is a little smaller, between 2.7-3.5 inches. You can find this species up for sale for as little as $25.
Crested Geckos lack blue pigment cells. Thus, they can’t be truly blue. They also can’t be a mixed color like true green or true purple. These colors also require blue pigments. But sometimes, you might still see blue Crested Geckos for sale.
Just keep in mind that they’re probably a mislabeled species or a light grey Axanthic Crested Gecko. Grey Geckos are notoriously tricky. Their skin reflects the light in such a way, that the grey can appear blue or purple. In this sense, you could find a “blue” Crested Gecko.
If that doesn’t suit your preference, there are also real blue Geckos out there for you. Yellow-Headed Geckos are the cheapest and most accessible. You can also find more expensive but brighter Electric Blue or Blue-tailed Day Geckos.