Who doesn’t get amazed by the characteristics and behavioral traits of the geckos? They are one of the most unique lizards in the ecosystem.
You might be eager to find out if the geckos give live birth or lay eggs. Let’s find out everything about how geckos reproduce one by one.
Do geckos lay eggs or give live birth?
Geckos are mostly oviparous, which means they naturally give birth by laying eggs. The female geckos lay up to two eggs in each clutch. Generally, they reproduce one clutch per year. However, there are few special species of gecko that can have up to six clutches in a year.
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Almost all 1,850 species of geckos are oviparous. The oviparous animals are those that lay eggs instead of directly giving birth to their babies. As a result, geckos are hatched from an egg.
In each clutch, geckos lay one or two eggs. This clutch is an attempt that an animal takes to reproduce offspring.
The geckos usually have only one clutch every year. However, there are quite a few species of geckos that reproduce up to five or six times a year.
Geckos’ eggs are white and come with sticky shells. The shells start to become hard when it is exposed to air. They lay their eggs in tree bark, leaves, wood, or rocks.
Before the infant geckos develop and come out of the shells, eggs incubate for 1 to 3 months. However, it can vary depending on the species.
That being said, for years before a female gecko lays her eggs, it can be pregnant with them. The harlequin gecko is one of these spices. Their pregnancy can last up to three to four years.
However, there are a few ovoviviparous species of geckos, which means they give live birth to offspring. They are usually found in New Zealand and in New Caledonia.
How do geckos lay eggs?
To lay eggs, geckos go through a very organized and simple reproducing process. They start to look for a partner during the late winter or early spring to start breeding. Mostly the male geckos look for a female partner to mate.
They start laying eggs after they become fully grown adults and attain sexual maturity. The female geckos can start to breed from two years of age, and male geckos can start breeding even when they are a year old.
The breeding age of the female geckos is more because this makes sure that she passes the eggs safely. It will also ensure that laying eggs doesn’t affect its growth cycle.
The male geckos bite the back of the female’s neck to start the breeding process and to keep her still while breeding.
They mate by aligning their vents. After that, the eggs will start developing within the female. The eggs will develop by consuming nutrition from the mother gecko.
Once the eggs are ready to be laid, the female gecko will find a spot where the predators won’t be able to reach. Then, it will dig a hole in that spot and lay them.
Unlike eggs of other animals, these eggs of geckos grow even after the mother gecko lays them. This is possible because the eggs’ shell is soft as a result it can absorb required nutritions and nutritions to grow.
Surprisingly, the gender of the baby gecko can be identified from the temperature of the egg. If the egg is relatively colder, then the hatchling being a female is maximum and vice versa.
After laying the eggs, the incubation process begins. The eggs will start shrinking after 6 to 12 weeks. When the eggs begin to shrink, it is a sign that the egg is ready to hatch.
Baby geckos can break out of the eggshells anytime in between 6 to 12 weeks. They usually use their teeth to break the shell. The hatchlings usually are 3 to 4 inches in length.
How often do geckos lay eggs?
The time interval at which geckos lay eggs varies from species to species. A few species lay eggs once a year, whereas some geckos lay eggs around five to six times a year.
Let’s find out how often two of the most well-known species of geckos lay eggs.
The mourning geckos can start laying eggs when they are only 10 months old and they can lay eggs quite often.
The mourning geckos usually lay eggs every 4 to six weeks. Their clutch contains two eggs, which takes about two to three months to hatch.
Once the Leopard geckos gain full weight and sexual maturity, they can lay eggs every 15 to 22 days. Their breeding period lasts for four to five months on average.
Where do geckos lay their eggs?
Geckos lay their eggs at such a place where any predators won’t be able to reach and their eggs will remain safe. However, the place where a house gecko and a wild gecko will lay eggs is different.
Have a look at where the geckos lay their eggs:
To lay eggs, house geckos look for a place that has high moisture. So, they lay eggs at cabinets below the kitchen sinks, and in the basement of the house as pipes through which water passes are installed in those areas.
Unlike house geckos, the wild geckos encounter predators at regular intervals. So, they sometimes try to hide their eggs by digging them into the soil after laying. The wild geckos also lay the eggs under tree barks, rocks, and woods.
At what age do leopard geckos lay eggs?
The leopard geckos can lay eggs once their weight becomes maximum and becomes fully mature. It takes at least seven years for the leopard geckos to become ready for laying eggs.
At the age of seven to eight, the leopard geckos start laying one or two clutches of eggs each year. They lay more and more eggs as they get older.
Do female geckos lay eggs without mating with a male?
Offspring don’t hatch from unfertilized eggs. So, for an egg to provide offspring, it needs to be fertilized and an egg gets fertilized only by mating.
A few species of geckos can lay eggs without mating. However, since those eggs are not fertile, they won’t produce baby geckos.
The unfertile gecko eggs can become fungus in a couple of weeks. So, female geckos won’t be able to lay eggs to reproduce without mating with a male.
What to do when leopard geckos lay eggs?
Handling and taking care of the newly laid leopard geckos eggs is quite simple. However, you will have to do it with utmost caution because the shells of the new eggs remain quite soft.
Let’s take a look at what you should do when leopard geckos lay eggs.
Transfer the eggs from an unstable surface:
Leopard geckos are not that attached to their eggs or babies. They can lay the eggs at any uneven surface, where the eggs can fall and break.
These geckos can also lay the eggs in an unsafe place. So, you should transfer the eggs if it is not laid in a proper spot.
Place the eggs in an incubator:
In an incubator, you can adjust the temperature, moisture level, and lighting. So, by placing the eggs in an incubator you can recreate the best possible environment for the geckos’ eggs to grow in a healthy manner.
How long does it take for a gecko to give birth?
Geckos give birth mostly by laying eggs. It takes between 30 to 90 days for a gecko to give birth by laying eggs. Once the gecko eggs are laid, the incubation process starts.
The eggs start to shrink when it is incubated. When the eggs contract, it means baby geckos can force their way out of the eggs at any moment.
How many eggs do leopard geckos lay?
The leopard geckos can lay up to two eggs each time. They can lay eggs in an interval of 15 to 20 days during the breeding season. The breeding season lasts for around four to five months. So, leopard geckos can lay up to 10 eggs each year.
Almost every species of geckos gives birth to offspring by laying eggs. However, some gecko species give live birth. A gecko can lay eight to ten eggs in a year after attaining full maturity. It takes up to 90 days for the eggs to hatch after a gecko lays them.