The Green Basilisk Lizard (Basiliscus plumifrons) is a reptile in the Corytophanidae family of iguana lizards. It is also known as the Plumed Basilisk and the Double Crested Basilisk.
The Green Basilisk Lizard is brilliant green with bright yellow eyes, and small blue spots on the ridge of its back. The male has three crests: one crest on its head, one crest on its back, and one crest on its tail. The female only has the head crest.
It grows to about 25 centimetres (10 inches) in length. If the tail is included, the length of the body and tail can measure up to 91 centimetres (36 inches) long.
It is native to Central America, in countries from Honduras to Panama.
The male is territorial, and chases away other lizards from its territory. It can run short distances across the top of water in a pond or river – this is why it is often nicknamed the Jesus Christ Lizard. It is also a good swimmer, and it can stay underwater for up to an hour.
The Green Basilisk Lizard is omnivorous, eating a wide variety of food, such as insects, spiders, rodents, small birds, snakes, lizards, frogs, crabs, fruit, seeds, flowers, and leaves. Its predators include birds of prey (such as eagles), opossums, coati, and snakes.
It is often seen in groups, with one male and several females. The female lays 5-15 eggs in warm, damp sand or soil. The eggs hatch after 56-70 days. The young emerge and are independent from birth – which means that they can look after themselves.
Location of photograpsh: Parc Zoologique de Paris in Bois de Vincennes, France
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM