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"Flight of the Pollinators" "Little Howler"

"The Gecko Effect" is the 33rd episode of Season 1 of Wild Kratts, originally airing on PBS Kids on October 23, 2012. The episode was written and directed by Martin Kratt.

In this episode, the Kratt brothers wonder why a gecko is able to walk on glass surfaces. They gather the crew and mini-size themselves in order to get a closer look at the gecko's ability, but Zach Varmitech sees this as an opportunity to sneak into the Tortuga HQ to steal the Wild Kratts' inventions.


The episode begins with a live action segment, in which the Kratt brothers narrow the characteristics of animal feet to the feet of geckos. Afterwards, they ask their "What if?" question and the show transitions into the cartoon segment.

The Kratt brothers notice a gecko climbing on the Tortuga's sunroof. Not understanding how they are able to do that, the Kratt brothers decide to begin an experiment. They think that gecko feet have suction cups on them, so Martin and Chris sneak into the garage and Martin grabs two pairs of suction cups. He places a pair on his hands and the other on his boots. He bounces up onto the sunroof via trampoline, successfully sticking to the sunroof. However, he is unable to move because the suction cups tightly cement him to the sunroof. Chris concludes that suction can't be released if it's too strong. He lassos a bungee cord around Martin's chest and tries pulling him off the sunroof, but the cord snaps, and he falls into the garage and sets off the alarm. The alarm wakes Aviva and Koki up, in which they assume the inventions have been stolen by Zach. However, it was only Chris, who set off the alarm. Aviva and Koki wonder what they're doing. Chris tells them that they're figuring out how geckos climb. Aviva says that it should wait until morning, but she and Koki decide to help Martin. With the help of Chris, they successfully pull Martin off the sunroof. The force, however, causes all four to roll out the Tortuga and into the forest, where they are surrounded by geckos. Meanwhile, Zach Varmitech finds out that the alarm in the Tortuga has been set off, and prepares to land his jet nearby so that he can steal the inventions inside.

Aviva analyzes the toe pads of one gecko and finds out that the "secret" is too small to see, so she, Koki, and the Kratt brothers head back into the Tortuga. Aviva grabs her newest invention: the Mobile Invention Kit, or M.I.K, a backpack that holds everything she needs to make Creature Power Discs. Martin also wakes up Jimmy Z by whispering into his ear that he lost his controller. All five then miniaturize and return to the forest. Martin distracts a gecko as Aviva gets a closer look at the gecko's toe pads. The Wild Kratts find out that geckos can stick to countless surfaces because they have feet that allow them to "electrically attach" to the surface, and to remove that tension, they peel their toes off from the tips inward. But then, two moon rats chase the Wild Kratts and the gecko into the Tortuga. The Wild Kratts run inside the Tortuga to get back to real size. Once they are inside, they find out that the Miniaturizer is missing.

The Wild Kratts then find out that Zach took the Miniaturizer when he suddenly appears right in front of them, holding it in his hand, and then he encloses them in a glass container. Zach then tells them what his plan is going to be. He will keep the Wild Kratts as his little trophy pets and then he will miniaturize all the animals in the world for them to play with. Aviva tells everyone that she was always afraid of her inventions falling into the wrong hands. Chris tries to climb out, but he is unable to. He then realizes that they need the "Gecko Effect". Gecko powers would get them out of the glass container. Koki tells them that the gecko is outside. Knowing that geckos can climb on glass, Martin convinces Zach to drop a gecko into the container, because that's the only way to free them. He says that he is fine with all the mini animals he has thrown in the glass container, but hopes Zach doesn't throw in a real-sized gecko because that freaks him out and explains what a gecko is and the gecko will freak him out. Zach overhears what Martin said and orders his Zachbot to throw the gecko in with them, so that it freaks mini-Martin out. Sure enough, Martin freaks out, as expected, in which Zach also laughs at him and calls him a "scaredy Kratt". Martin gets back at him and says that they'll see who gets the last laugh. Aviva crafts Creature Power Discs, and the Kratt brothers activate their Creature Power Suits. In the meantime, Zach has a conference call with the other villains, saying that he invented a new Miniaturizer, which is actually false. The rest of the crew grabs onto Chris's tail as they climb up. While they start climbing, Martin is unable to convince the gecko to go up with him, because the gecko doesn't understand what "up" means. Later, while the rest of the crew is hanging, Aviva realizes that Jimmy forgot to tie his shoe and she falls down, screaming. Luckily, Martin is able to catch and save her, in which she holds on to his tail. Martin is finally able to climb up with the gecko also cooperating with him. The Wild Kratts eventually get out of the glass container and return to normal size with the Miniaturizer without Zach knowing.

Zach tells the villains what he is going to with the Miniaturizer and concludes that the villains are jealous after ending the call. Aviva tells him that they must be jealous of an invention thief, like him. Zach orders the Zachbots to get Chris and Martin, but not after he remembers that he miniaturized the Zachbots, in which Chris and Martin blow the Zachbots back to him. He swears to get back at the "Wild Rats". Chris and Martin correct him again, but Zach says that he's referring to the real, giant rats. Martin and Chris tell him that he is kind of right and those are wild moon rats. They all find that the two Moon rats that were following the Wild Kratts earlier, must have entered the Tortuga and jumped onto the Miniaturizer, which expanded them in size. Zach freaks out and runs out screaming, implying that he admits defeat. At the end, the Kratt brothers trap the moon rats by closing the garage doors on them that prevent them from leaving and prepare to return them to their original size. Chris reminds Martin that he realizes he forgot to name their gecko friend. Martin tells him that he didn't. He has been calling the gecko by its name the whole time. Chris tells Martin to tell him the gecko's name. Martin pretends to tell him the gecko's name, when he is not actually doing it. Chris tells Martin to tell him again. Martin pretends to tell him again. Chris tells Martin that he wants to know what he named the gecko. This time, Martin actually tells Chris the gecko's name and everyone laughs.

The show transitions into the ending live action segment, The Kratt brothers watch as geckos climb on glass walls. Afterwards, they conclude the episode by saying "Keep on creature adventuring; we'll see you on the creature trail!"




Note: Featured animals are in bold.


Note: Mentioned animals are linked to Wikipedia.

Live Action

Note: Live action animals are linked to Wikipedia.


  • This is the first episode where a villain sneaks into the Tortuga HQ.
  • Zach is revealed to be a thief in this episode, with the Kratt brothers first mentioning that with the security system in the invention garage, Zach would not be able to steal their inventions without setting off an alarm. Later, Zach stole the unguarded Miniaturizer. This is because the alarm was off due to Chris accidentally setting it off.
  • This is the first time Zach steals any invention. In this case, it's the Miniaturizer.

Key Facts and Creature Moments

  • A gecko using its electrostatic toe pad grip to climb glass.
  • Geckos use their tongues to clean their eyes.
  • Geckos are the only kinds of lizards in the world that make musical sounds.
Wild Kratts episodes
Seasons: 123456
Season 1

"Mom of a Croc" • "Whale of a Squid" • "Aardvark Town" • "Flight of the Draco" • "Mystery of the Squirmy Wormy" • "Platypus Cafe" • "Polar Bears Don't Dance" • "Build It Beaver" • "Voyage of the Butterflier XT" • "Honey Seekers" • "Bass Class" • "Fireflies" • "Mystery of the Weird Looking Walrus" • "Tazzy Chris" • "Octopus Wildkratticus" • "Walk on the Wetside" • "Elephant in the Room" • "Let the Rhinos Roll!" • "Kickin' It With the Roos" • "The Blue and the Gray" • "Falcon City" • "Koala Balloon" • "Cheetah Racer" • "Kerhonk" • "Mimic" • "Caracal-Minton" • "Zig-Zagged" • "A Huge Orange Problem" • "Seasquatch" • "The Food Chain Game" • "Masked Bandits" • "Flight of the Pollinators" • "The Gecko Effect" • "Little Howler" • "Quillber's Birthday Present" • "A Bat in the Brownies" • "Stuck on Sharks" • "Birds of a Feather" • "Googly Eye: The Night Guru" • "Raptor Round Up"