Wednesday, 22 May 2013

CASE STUDY: The Brotherhood of Geckos - Multi-housing & Colony Housing

As I have written before, most geckos DON'T need friends.  However, there are the odd occasions where groups that shouldn't get along... DO!  It's crazy!  But it just proves what I'm coming to believe more and more - that crested geckos are very social animals, despite the common belief that they aren't.

I received a group of three cresties into my rescue from a young boy who wanted to try his hand at breeding and believed that he had a male and two females "even though one of them looks male".  His vet had even told him he had a good breeding group of a male and two females.  This is why I'm very cautious about who I go to when the vet receptionist insists they see "any exotics" without asking.

I got these geckos home and gave them a couple of days to settle before checking them more thoroughly.  All three were male!  No wonder the kid never got any eggs!

Despite all of them being male, they had been together for so long and were so friendly and docile that I decided to keep them together, just to see what would happen.  Well wouldn't you know it, they got along!  They do make a ton of noise as night, but there doesn't seem to be any bullying and they even eat together without competing.  I do, however, provide ample amounts of CGD in three separate dishes just in case, as well as crickets weekly.

So does this mean that ALL geckos will get along?  I don't think so.  I think this is probably only possible due to a few factors:
  1. They were housed together from a very young age.
  2. They have always been housed in the absence of females.
  3. They always have more food than they could ever dream of.
If a female were to be introduced I would hypothesize that they would become aggressive in the pursuit of her, although an absence of food one night didn't cause any fighting.  Perhaps if there were limited food for a significant period of time then they may start to compete for it.

I still don't advise or advocate the housing of multiple geckos outside of breeding groups, and still strongly advise against housing multiple males together in the presence of a female.

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