Sunday, April 28, 2013

Leapin' Lizards

And leap they do! Recently, my neighbor Ray and I saw our "first of the season" Carolina anole leaping from post to fence and back again, cocking his little green head, eyeing us right back. Commonly referred to as the American Chameleon, these small lizards, averaging under 6 inches in length, are not a true chameleon at all but are more closely related to the iguana. They do however change from a variety of brown hues to a bright green depending on where they are lounging.

In years past, I had one male anole that made his home behind my wooden octopus near the front door. Each morning I would head out to the deck, coffee cup in hand, to watch the wee guy greet the morning at precisely 8:30 am. He would then wander across the same upper beam of the pergola, head down the same post and enter the trumpet vine jungle in search of breakfast. I wanted to tell him to try a different path, be brave, take a chance and have an adventure. But these lizards are quite territorial and I'm guessing part of that trait for my anole was to follow the same path each day and survey his kingdom.

I once witnessed an encounter between two males on the deck, an aggressive ordeal. Each lizard would inflate his neck displaying a vibrant, flamingo-pink throat as a warning to back off. They would chase each other, tangle up and then retreat. This went on for quite a while until the challenger gave up the fight and disappeared into the trumpet vine, never to return.

I'm hoping the warm weather will now reveal more anoles along with my glass lizards and skinks. Don't you just love Spring?

"One swallow does not make a summer, but one skein of geese cleaving the murk of a March thaw, is the spring."
                        Aldo Leopold


  1. we supposedly have them out here but i've never seen one!

  2. be sure to pack them carefully! especially if you're including some glass lizards (very fragile).

  3. You have inherited my sense of humor along with my fantastic sense of style and good looks!