Crested Geckos

Crested Gecko Chirping

Believe it or not, but Crested Geckos are actually very vocal pets, and while they might not match cats or dogs with the volume and sheer amount of noise they make, they are certainly one of the more expressive species of gecko in this regard.

For first-time owners though, it can be unexpected and perhaps even a bit concerning when their Crestie starts chirping away so let’s explore some of the reasons why they do it and if there’s anything to worry about when you do hear it.

What Does Crested Gecko Chirping Sound Like?

Before we get into what it means, let’s try and understand what we’re actually looking (or should that be listening?) for when we say ‘chirping’.

Noises are tricky to describe and one person’s ‘chirp’ might be another person’s ‘bark’ or ‘click’. When it comes to crested geckos though, these are probably all just different ways of describing the same thing.

A crested gecko chirp sounds like a short, trilling sound or a rapid succession of clicks, similar to the noise a cricket would make but on a lower pitch. The sound is made by rubbing their ribs together which helps people imagine what it might sound like and I’ve also heard people describe it as the sound of running a stick along a ridged surface or the noise a squeaky toy pig makes.

Why Do Crested Geckos Chirp?

Crested gecko chirping is simply a form of communication for them. Vocalization is a way to show their territoriality (basically that you or someone/something is in their personal area), indicate stress levels, signal that they are looking for a mate, or sometimes just to show that they are happy and content.

It would be awesome to think that chirping was the gecko equivalent of a cat purring and that it was a purely positive sound that means they are happy and content but unfortunately, most of the time chirping is a sign that something’s wrong.

Crested geckos usually make a chirping sound when they are uncomfortable or feeling threatened. New owners often find that their gecko chirps or barks at them when they try to handle the gecko and this is a sure-fire sign that your gecko isn’t used to you yet and doesn’t want to be held. Essentially, your gecko is shouting “Leave me alone” when this happens

Loud or aggressive chirping, sometimes described as barking, is used by females to let a male gecko know that she’s not interested in his advances. Owners might also hear this from a female gecko at times but either way, she’s making it clear that she’s not at all happy to stay back!

It’s not all bad news though, lots of owners report that their geckos make chirping noises when they are actually quite happy and content. You might hear your gecko chirping away as it wanders around its terrarium if it has plenty of stimulation and feels comfortable and safe in its home.

You might even hear a happy chirp while you are handling them once they get to know and trust you (in which case you can forget what I said about a chirp not being the same as a purr earlier) but this is not particularly common so keep an eye out for signs of stress like biting, rapid breathing or arching their back to make themselves look big and scary

How Can You Stop Crested Geckos Chirping?

Ideally, we’d all like to let our geckos make whatever noises they feel like so we can get a good idea of how they are feeling.

In real life, however, that isn’t always possible – especially as crested geckos are nocturnal and the last thing you want while you’re trying to sleep is the sound of an irate gecko in the background! Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to (try and) stop your crested gecko from chirping.

First and foremost should be making sure they have everything they need in their enclosure and that they don’t feel stressed or agitated. This will go a long way to making sure your gecko doesn’t feel the need to vocalize to show you how they are feeling.

As you’ve seen though, sometimes they just need to get it out of their systems and make a bit of noise even if there’s nothing really wrong. In this case you can try to cover their cage with a blanket or towel to drown out some of the noise.

Most of the time, if your gecko is well looked after you won’t have to worry about chirping so do your best to keep them happy and if you do have to put up with a bit of vocalization from time to time just consider it part of the price we pay as dedicated pet owners!

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