TUKO

tukô: gecko
Story from the Philippines

Tuko and the Birds is about Tuko, the gecko who cries so loud that the birds stop singing and cannot sleep.

isang uri ng butiki na isinigaw ang kanyang pangalan
a type of big lizard that shouts out its own name

Note that the English word “gecko” comes from the Indonesian-Malay gēkoq, which is imitative of the sound the animals make.

The name tuko comes from the sound of its hoarse cry, often as loud as the bark of a dog. According to Philippine folklore, whenever a tuko swallows anything, it calls its name five times. Many Filipinos believe these geckos bring good luck, and some children keep them as pets.

kapit-tuko: holding on very tight, like a gecko on the ceiling defying gravity