Crested geckos are a source of constant curiosity for humans. Especially the pet lovers who love to keep reptiles are often found anxious about various behaviours of crested gecko that seems really intriguing. People are yet to decipher various curious habit of the reptile named crested gecko, as they are much new in the pet world.
Also, they behave much differently than cats and dogs, the two most common and popular pets. So what they, eat, when they eat, when they sleep and when they do not, everything comes under the scrutiny of the reptile lovers.
Why my crested gecko is lying on the ground?
There are various reasons behind the activity of lying on the ground. When you see the crested gecko lying on the surface for a good part of the day, then you can check the humidity of the enclosure. When the humidity of the terrarium is too low, the crested gecko often lies down on the cage and does not move much.
Another reason for their lying on the ground can be, lack of foliage. You need to put the natural or artificial foliage in a good amount within the terrarium to make it look like a naturally shaded place. But in absence of it, the terrarium seems bare for the crested gecko and they cling to the floor.
The same happens when the temperature is too high inside the cage.
You must also check the heat source to make sure that it radiates a moderate amount of heat. In absence of the heat gradient, the crested gecko feels less energized. They cannot sustain themselves without heat but the heat should not be more than their tolerance level. When they feel exhausted due to the excess heat and the cold spot of the terrarium is not very cold, they lie down on the floor but do not sleep.
Being gravid is another reason for the female crested gecko to lie on the floor. Their weight gain is primarily the reason that prohibits them to climb on the branches or the hammock that you have placed in the terrarium. They feel comfortable while lying on the floor only.
Also during the time of shedding they stay cling to the floor, without climbing on the decorations inside the terrarium.
Firing down is the term used to describe the condition when the crested gecko tries to camouflage and their body colour gets lighter. This is a sign that shows that they are feeling vulnerable or feeling tired. They try to match with the accommodation and stay inactive for a few hours.
How to know if the gecko is sleeping?
Unlike other animals, who sleeps quite distinguishingly, crested gecko shows less prominent gestures while sleeping. If you are keeping a crested gecko in the terrarium and are unsure of the sleeping pattern of this reptile pet, then check for the movement first. You may see the gecko is not moving much for a few minutes at a stretch. But it does not always happen at sleeping time only. They can stay still for various other reasons.
Check for the crest and eye of the gecko. When the crested gecko is awake their crests will stand up or stay erect. On the other hand, the crest of a sleeping gecko will be lying down.
Also, the pupil of the eyes of the crested gecko will appear like large balls when they are awake. A sleeping gecko’s pupil will be visible like tiny slits.
The sleeping pattern of crested gecko:
There is something interesting about the crested gecko. They are both crepuscular and nocturnal in nature. That is, they are most active during dusk and dawn. They do not sleep at night time, so if you find the gecko awake in the mid of the night or breaking of the dawn do not be surprised.
They stay active and also eat the food at the night, so you do not have to worry about their sleeping pattern. However, during the daytime, the geckos are resting. You may find them inactive, if not sleeping in the daytime. Also if you have arranged for some hiding places in the terrarium of the crested gecko, it will sleep only in there.
The reason for this strange sleeping habit of crested gecko:
The sleeping habit, as well as diet and many other lifestyle habits of creatures, depend upon the place where they have originated from. When some creatures are originated in some hot places like a desert, they keep sleeping during the daytime to avoid the extreme heat. This is also a way of conserving energy.
They utilize the dawn and dusk time to eat, socialize and explore the surroundings. They always seek a favourable climate to do these activities. South Caledonia is the origination place of crested gecko which is a rain forest area mostly. So they sleep away in cool places like burrow during the daytime and stay awake when the temperature lessens.
So this is quite clear that crested gecko is not adjusted with the high-temperature environment, and they prefer to stay up and active during the night time. That explains why they are active during dusk, dawn and nighttime only.
Reasons for not sleeping:
As we have already mentioned, the sleeping pattern of the crested gecko depends a lot upon external factors like temperature, shade and humidity, if these parameters change, that can affect their sleeping pattern.
These parameters depend upon the instruments attached in their cages. So if you find the gecko is active during the daytime and also not sleeping at dusk or dawn, then watch its behaviour for a few days. There can be issues like that for some sudden reasons and that can disturb the sleeping pattern of the gecko for a day or two.
When the sleep cycle is disturbed for more than 2 days, then you should check the heat source, light source as well as humidity of the terrarium. If the heat source is emitting more or less heat than it should be emitting, then the gecko will not be finding a good atmosphere to sleep in.
Also if the heat source is not emitting enough heat, then also it can be a problematic situation for the crested gecko. It will make the reptile tired all day and night, but will not be able to sleep properly in the daytime or even in the dusk or dawn.
Also, you should check the feeding pattern of the gecko to know if it is having the proper food and that too at the right time. If it is refusing food for certain times, then it may starve and that can be another reason for its not sleeping at the right time and proper amount. You can change the food item to see any change in its lifestyle and sleeping cycle.
The right amount of sleep is mandatory for the good health of the crested gecko. Likewise, you need to maintain the other factors of its lifestyle, like temperature, humidity, a good and cosy environment and the right amount of food. In absence of any of the factors, the gecko will be uncomfortable and eventually it may fall sick. So keeping a pet not only means enjoying its company but also it means taking responsibility of its health. As a responsible pet owner, you must arrange for the means to keep it happy and safe.