Spiny lizards (family Phrynosomatidae)
Spiny Lizards: Sceloporus
Approximately three thousand five hundred different reptile species generally identified as lizards, can be found living in warm, dry climates around the world.
With well over one thousand documented species, skinks, members of the Scincidae family, constitute the largest lizard family. Their North American presence is limited to approximately fifteen different species.
The approximately one hundred and twenty native lizard species, including skinks, fall into eleven different lizard families.
Spiny lizards (family Phrynosomatidae), the largest native North American lizard family, consists of some forty five species divided into nine genera.
- Earless Lizards - Genus Holbrookia
- Fringe-toed Lizards - Genus Uma
- Greater Earless Lizards - Genus Cophosaurus
- Horned Lizards - Genus Phrynosoma
- Rock Lizards - Genus Petrosaurus
- Side-blotched Lizards - Genus Uta
- Spiny Lizards - Genus Sceloporus
- Tree Lizards - Genus Urosaurus
- Zebra-tailed Lizards - Genus Callisaurus
The Side-blotched Lizard (Uta stansburiana), top picture, inhabits arid regions of western North America. Five regional subspecies have been identified.
The side blotch refers to the black spot behind the front leg of the lizard. The Uta genus was named for Utah, the state where they were first discovered.
The San Lucan rock lizard (Petrosaurus Thalassinus), also known as the Baja rock lizard or blue rock lizard, inhabits the San Lucan area of Baja California.
Flat bodied, medium sized lizards with a blue color on the face and a yellow throat. The colors are more pronounced during mating season.
The spiny lizards (Genus Sceloporus) link points to an article covering their North American presence.
Zebra-tailed lizard (Callisaurus draconoides) get their name from the black and white stripes on the tail, a self-defense mechanism.
Active during the day, they feed on insects.
© 2008-2012 Patricia A. Michaels