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Discussion in 'Monitors' started by jamest0o0, May 17, 2008.

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  1. jamest0o0

    jamest0o0 Elite Member

    So kriminal suggested an ackie as a beginner monitor because I was looking for more of a larger lizard that would be interactive because I've never had a lizard larger than a leopard gecko. So I know research is a MUST. I am just posting here to ask for some basic info/opinions on them before I get too into them and find out I can't take care of one for one reason or another.

  2. 904cresteds

    904cresteds Elite Member

    i would go with a blue tongue skink..or uro,those are good starter big lizards :) and very friendly
  3. ryanpb

    ryanpb Elite Member

    I Think these guys are great, And I know i want a monitor lizard, but the price of these guys has always detered me, even if after all the money you'll spend on caging, feeding and so on is factored in, they are still a bit pricey.
    From what i hear they are awsome.
    I know a few members keep some, they should chime in.
  4. JasonL

    JasonL Member

    They will require special attention to their heating requirements and enclosure design, get that right and they are easy to keep.
  5. battlemetal

    battlemetal Active Member

    Telling from where your coming from, an acanthurus will be a huge leap forward. Although I do admit that they are the best choice for a starter varanid. So here are the basics for housing and feeding: An enclosure for a hatchling to a young juvie ackie should be at least 3x2x2ft. As they get older to thier adult size, they will need an enclosure of at least 5x3x4ft. The cool thing about ackies is that they can be housed together though most people only keep up to 4 in the same enclosure. Just remember that the more you house together the larger your enclosure must be (I doubt you'll want more than one to start with but just wanted to throw that in). Substrate should be deep enough so that they can burrow in. Like a foot or two will be good. A good substrate would be a sand and dirt mix. You can buy some play sand from your local homedepot and plain dirt from your backyard. Basking temps should be kept around 100-120 and an all around temp of 80. 70-60 for the cool side and at night. Feeding when still young should consist of a mainly insectivorous diet. You should feed vitamin dusted crickets, roaches, worms, pinkie mice, etc. daily until they appear full. When they get older, you should feed appropriate sized mice, roaches and larger crickets and worms. Basically the same stuff just bigger. What is fed to them is very important because it will decide how healthy they appear and how much they will grow. But when they reach their adult size decrease their meal size because if not they might get obese. These are just the basics, anymore questions just ask and i'll see what I can do.
  6. jamest0o0

    jamest0o0 Elite Member

    Thanks a lot, where could I get worms and would there be a substitute for roaches, I'm not comfortable having them in my house? Do they go the bathroom in a certain area like leopard geckos do? How fast do they grow, what size do they usually average out at? And are they quick? How much does one usually cost and can you get them captive bred?

  7. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    Reptile Forums - The HC Network - Ackies - Red and Yellow Caresheet (Varanus acanthurus)

    You can substitute crickets for roaches but you will go through a lot more of them. I am considering changing to roaches for my Ackies because of this. They use the can wherever they please.
    The trio I have are about 15 months old. The male is the largest at about 16 inches total length. One female is about 14" and the other around 12 inches. These are purebred yellows. Reds will be larger and can get 2 to 2 1/2 ft on average.
    They are pretty fast but not lightning fast.
    Depending on availability they will range around $200-$300. I would advise against the Reds unless you buy them from a reputable place that ensures you they are "true Reds" There are many crossbreeds between yellow and reds available now that are getting the Red Ackie pricetag.
    They are all captive bred as they are natives of Australia and it is illegal to export them.
  8. jamest0o0

    jamest0o0 Elite Member

    How many crickets would I expect to go through in a week?
  9. Brewster320

    Brewster320 Elite Member

    My bearded dragon I used to have, went through TWO DOZEN A DAY and that doesn't include all the veggies and worms she ate two.. I can only imagine what a 100% carnivorous monitor would go through.
  10. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    Depends on the size of the cricket and the age of the monitor. As they're reaching maturity (like the first year) they eat a lot. Feeding as big a cricket as they can handle will keep the costs down. It also depends on what else you're feeding. I also feed supers, frozen turkey(mixed with vitamins) and pinkies occasionally. I use roughly a box of a thousand per month for the 3 Ackies I currently have. That's not too bad. Costs me $30 a month for the crickets.
    Once they get older they don't eat or need to eat as much.
  11. jamest0o0

    jamest0o0 Elite Member

    Do you mean raw ground turkey? And what do you do to keep your crickets alive? I only get about a total of 30 or so in a month, and some die while keeping them caged. I'd imagine a lot die having a thousand of them?
  12. battlemetal

    battlemetal Active Member

    Ground turkey could be fed, but whole foods will always be much more beneficial. I've only offered ground turkey about three times to my argus. What do you keep your crickets in?
  13. jamest0o0

    jamest0o0 Elite Member

    5gal glass tank with screen lid. I have paper towels lining it with a dish of cricket feed and cricket quencher. I also add lettuce and carrots for them to munch on and I have egg crate for them to hide in.
  14. battlemetal

    battlemetal Active Member

    Do a large amount of them die? Your setup sounds good...
  15. jamest0o0

    jamest0o0 Elite Member

    No, not really jsut a few. I just thought with a 1000 it'd be easier for them to die and figured you'd have to keep them longer. I usually only have about 12-24 at a time and they go pretty fast.
  16. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    Yeah it's raw ground turkey. I feed it usually on Saturdays to make sure they are getting the vitamins and minerals. Dusting crickets isn't all that effective I find.
    If you get a good quality cricket supplier you should have less than 5 percent die. Believe me there's a big difference. Try a few until you see it.
    I keep mine in a large rubbermaid container with the side and lid cut out and mesh applied for ventilation. The biggest killer is moisture buildup. Keeping them warm with a bulb helps as well. Daily leafy greens for food and water and they will be fine.
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