Caucasian Agama Lizard

The Caucasian Agama (Paralaudakia caucasia) is a small agamid reptile in the Agamidae family of rock lizards. 

The Caucasian Agama has an elongated, flat body. Its scales are light-brown to olive coloured with yellowish dark-edged markings on its back. It does not have a throat pouch or loose skin under its chin. It has a light coloured underbelly. It has a rounded tail with large scales arranged in rings. 

Its yellowish limbs are long and strong. Its fourth toe on its hind (back) leg is longer than the other toes. 

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Does a Lizard Shed its Skin?

Most people know that a snake sheds its skin, but does a lizard shed its skin?

A lizard is a reptile. Reptiles include snakes, lizards, crocodiles, alligators, caimans, turtles, tortoises, and terrapins. Reptiles lay soft-shelled eggs on land.

The Balkan Slow Worm (Pseudopus apodus) is also a reptile. It is not a worm and it is not a snake. It is a legless lizard. It actually has small (almost invisible), undeveloped rear legs, but it does not use its legs for locomotion. It is not a snake because it has eyelids (snakes do not have eyelids). It has a long tail. It is also known as the Pallas’s Glass Lizard, the European Glass Lizard, the Sheltopusik, or the Giant Russian Legless Lizard.

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Tree-Crevice Skink

The Tree-Crevice Skink (Egernia striolata) is a reptile in the Scincidae family of skink lizards. It is a squamate. It is also called the Tree Skink.

The Tree-Crevice Skink has a thick, flattened body with small eyes. It has 26-36 rows of scales. It is dark-black to grey-brown with a pale stripe of scales down its body from its head to its tail. Its underbelly is pale or cream-coloured. It eyes have vertical, narrow pupils.

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Dinosaur Series: Stegosaurus

The Stegosaurus (Stegosaurus stenops) is a large, four-legged, herbivorous armoured dinosaur in the Stegosauridae family. Its name means roof lizard. 

It lived about 155-150 million years ago in the Late Jurassic period.

The Stegosaurus is easily recognizable. It had a small head, short neck, and rounded back. It had large knife-shaped, upright plaques along its back and spikes on its tail. It walked on four legs, with its front legs shorter than its hind (back) legs. It had small, triangular, flat teeth.  

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Dinosaur Series: Cryolophosaurus

The Cryolophosaurus (Cryolophosaurus ellioti) is a large well-built theropod dinosaur in the Cryolophosaurus genus. Cryolophosaurus means frozen crested lizard beause it was found in Antarctica (South Pole).

It lived about 180 million years ago in the Early Jurassic period.

The Cryolophosaurus had a high, narrow skull. It had a bony crest just above the eyes. It had long, heavy hind (back) legs and short forelimbs (front limbs), like arms. It had two large clawed digits, and a smaller digit, on each limb. It had a long, thick tail, and a coat of feathers. 

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Fallacy: a chameleon changes colour to camouflage itself

Is it true that a chameleon changes colour to camouflage itself? This might be a fallacy – a fallacy means that it is not true.

The Chameleon is a reptile in the Chamaeleonidae family of lizards. It is arboreal because it lives in trees. The Chameleon is native to Africa, Madagascar, southern Europe, and southern Asia. It prefers to live in warm regions, such as rain forests and deserts. 

I have written in this website that the Chameleon can be a variety of colours, and “it can change colour to match its environment – this is called camouflage.” But it might be incorrect to say this.

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Madagascar Giant Day Gecko

The Madagascar Giant Day Gecko (Phelsuma madagascariensis or Phelsuma grandis) is a reptile in the Gekkonidae family of gecko lizards.

The Madagascar Giant Day Gecko is bright green with a red stripe from its nostril to each eye. It has red coloured dots or bars on its back. Its underbelly is creamy-white or yellow. It has round pupils (instead of vertical pupils like nocturnal lizards). It has no eyelids, so it keeps its eyes moist and clean by licking them with its long tongue.

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Komodo Dragon’s Tongue

The Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis) is a large reptile in the Varanidae family of monitor lizards. It is an ectotherm varanid. 

The Komodo Dragon has sharp teeth and a long, yellow, deeply-forked tongue. 

It eats invertebrates, birds, and mammals, such as monkeys. It uses venom to kill its prey, because the toxins stop the prey’s wound from clotting. The animal loses blood pressure and lots of blood. The Komodo Dragon takes a bite out of an animal, even a large animal, and the animal dies within a few days. 

The Komodo Dragon can eat a monkey or a deer whole. So, why does it need a long tongue? 

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Jackson’s Forest Lizard

The Jackson’s Forest Lizard (Adolfus jacksoni) is a small to medium-sized reptile in the Lacertidae family of wall lizards. It is a lacertid. 

The Jackson’s Forest Lizard is long and slender with shiny scales and a long tail. It has brown stripes on either side of its body with rows of greenish spots. It has a pale underbelly. It has large black eyes with yellow eye rings. It has short legs with five toes on each foot.

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RESEARCH: Animals have played an important health role during the COVID-19 pandemic

A 2020 research study indicates that animals, mainly pets, have played an important health role during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Researchers at the University of South Australia studied the effects of animals during the pandemic when human-to-human contact was restricted to reduce the spread of the virus. 

Researcher Dr. Janette Young said, “To fill the void of loneliness and provide a buffer against stress, there has been a global upsurge in people adopting dogs and cats from animal shelters during lockdowns. Breeders have also been inundated with demands for puppies quadrupling some waiting lists.”

It is estimated that more than half the global population share their lives with one or more pets. The health benefits have been widely reported, but little data exists regarding the specific benefits that pets bring to humans in terms of touch. 

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Jacky Dragon

The Jacky Dragon (Amphibolurus muricatus) is a medium-sized reptile in the Agamidae family of agamid lizards. It is also known as the Tree Dragon, the Stonewalker, or the Blood-Sucker.

The Jacky Dragon has an elongated, rough-scaled, brown to pale-grey body with dark markings along the middle of its back. The dark markings are combined with pale blotches. It has a dark-brown bar between its eyes and its ears. It has five crests on its head. It has a bright yellow lining in its mouth, and orange-red corners of its mouth, with a broad, thick, fleshy tongue. Its hind (back) legs are longer than its front legs. Its feet have five clawed toes.

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