These charismatic geckos get their name from the loud ‘tokay’ call the males make during mating. They are a noisy gecko and will also click, squeak and bark. The second largest gecko species, males grow to 35 centimetres long and can weigh up to 300 grams. They are solid looking with large heads, bulging eyes and big rounded pads on the ends of the splayed toes. But it’s their colour and patterning that’s the most amazing – their base light grey-blue colour is covered in polka dotted spots of red-brown to bright orange, red and yellow. As with other geckos, they can change their colour slightly to suit their surrounds.
Tokay geckos in the wild are found from India through south-east Asia as far as western New Guinea. They live in rainforests, in trees and cliffs and are great climbers. They have been known to investigate human homes and are very territorial.
Tokay geckos eat insects, and the occasional very small mammal. They typically eat locusts, crickets, cockroaches, centipedes and even scorpions. The geckos have a powerful bite and will not hesitate to bite humans – sometimes not letting go for over an hour!
Being solitary animals, Tokay geckos only meet to mate. One or two eggs are laid which the male and female take turns to guard. The eggs are ‘glued’ onto a surface so they can’t move. If they’re stuck onto packaging, the eggs can travel around the world!