Sand lizard Facts

Sand lizard Facts
Sand lizard is a reptile that belongs to the family of wall lizards. This species is widely spread in Europe and Asia. Sand lizard inhabits coastal areas (live close to sand dunes) and sandy heathlands. Number of sand lizards in the West Europe and Great Britain is dropping due to accelerated development of agriculture and increased urbanization of coastal region. Population of sand lizards in other parts of their range is large and stable. Sand lizard is not on the list of endangered animals.
Interesting Sand lizard Facts:
Sand lizard can reach 5 to 7.8 inches in length and 0.35 to 0.5 ounces of weight.
Sand lizard is multicolored. Basic color of the body is usually brown, grey or beige. Dorsal side of the body is covered with eye-like markings (called ocelli): light dots surrounded with dark rings. Young sand lizards also have these markings, but the rest of their body is more uniformly brown-colored.
Males and females can be distinguished by the color of the flanks. Males have brown, yellowish or green flanks that become bright green colored during the breeding season (to attract females).
Sand lizard has stocky body with very long tail (130 or 170% of body length).
Like most other lizard species, sand lizards are able to detach their tail from the rest of the body to escape from the predators.
Sand lizards are diurnal animals (active during the day).
Sand lizards are carnivores (meat-eaters). Their diet is mostly based on insects, spiders and grasshoppers. Sand lizards occasionally eat fruit and flowers.
Sand lizards bask in the sun during the day to raise body temperature and gain energy required for everyday activities.
Sand lizards sleep in the underground burrows. They use holes in the ground to hide from the predators and to escape from the heat during the hottest part of a day.
Main predators of sand lizards are cats, dogs, foxes and birds of prey.
Sand lizards undergo period of dormancy (called brumation) during the winter. They remain dormant until weather conditions improve, usually until the March or April.
Mating season of sand lizards takes place during the spring (from April to May). Males fight to establish dominance and get opportunity to mate.
Female lays 4 to 14 eggs in the nest in the sand at the beginning of the summer. She picks sunny location to ensure successful incubation of eggs (sun provides heat required for development of eggs). Eggs hatch after 40 to 60 days.
Hatchlings are left on their own from the moment of birth. Young sand lizards grow and develop quickly thanks to plentiful invertebrates (major food source) at the end of the summer. Sand lizards reach sexual maturity at the age of 2 years.
Sand lizards can survive up to 12 years in the wild.

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