lizards, 2012

January 6, 2013

I suppose my time spent on lizard photography decreased a bit during 2012, and I paused to shoot specimens mostly when it was easy to.

Most of these are collared lizards.  Until I got out into their habitat more, I considered this a less familiar species.  I think it’s familiar now.

great basin collared liz, small adult male, Confusions

late April 2012, great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), small adult male, Confusion Range, Millard Co, UT

This one was basking on a rock in the middle of a dry wash.  Late April is probably the earliest I’ve seen this species.  I had been to the same area on a warm weekend in late March 2012, and the western fence and sideblotch lizards were out then, but I did not see a collared lizard that early.

*

great basin collared liz, subadult, Confusions

mid May 2012, great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), subadult, Confusion Range, Millard Co, UT

I lean toward calling this specimen a young female, based on its pattern; but I got no closer than this shot and am not sure, so I’ll call it a “subadult.”

*

habitat of great basin collared liz, subadult, Confusions

mid May 2012, habitat of great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), subadult, Confusion Range, Millard Co, UT

I found it here on this grassier, N-facing side of the canyon, where the smaller lizard species it preys on seem less dense than on the S-facing slope and in the canyon bottom.

*

great basin collared liz, old adult male (a), Fish Springs

late May 2012, great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), old adult male (a), surveying his domain, Fish Springs Range, Juab Co, UT

I came upon this old male perched like this, facing down this W-facing slope in the late morning.

*

Different shot of specimen above:

great basin collared liz, old adult male (b), Fish Springs

late May 2012, great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), old adult male (b), Fish Springs Range, Juab Co, UT

*

Different shot of specimen above:

great basin collared liz, old adult male (c), Fish Springs

late May 2012, great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), old adult male (c), Fish Springs Range, Juab Co, UT

*

western fence liz, subadult on pinion, Oquirrhs

mid June 2012, western fence liz (Sceloporus occidentalis), subadult on singleleaf pinion trunk, W Oquirrh Mtns, Tooele Co, UT

*

great basin collared liz, scrawny juvenile (a), Oquirrhs

mid June 2012, great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), scrawny juvenile (a), W Oquirrh Mtns, Tooele Co, UT

*

Different shot of specimen above:

great basin collared liz, scrawny juvenile (b), Oquirrhs

mid June 2012, great basin collared liz (Crotaphytus bicintores), scrawny juvenile (b), W Oquirrh Mtns, Tooele Co, UT

Of all this post’s specimens, this scrawny little collared lizard is the most significant for me.  It’s my first of its species I’ve seen in the Oquirrh Mtns.  If you had asked me before seeing this one, I would have said the species probably did not occur in this area, since I’d spent enough time there to see five other lizard species but not collared lizard.  But now, no longer will I arrogantly presume collared lizards do not live in the Oquirrh Mtns–although perhaps at fairly low density.  I still have not come across either of Utah’s horned lizard species along the Oquirrhs, but maybe I’ll see one of them someday.

*

eastern fence liz, adult male, E of Cedar City

late June 2012, eastern fence liz (Sceloporus undulatus), adult male, E of Cedar City, Cedar Cyn area, Iron Co, UT

This guy had plentiful small black ticks under scales along his neck.  2012 was the season I learned to notice small black ticks on fence lizards in places other than the depression behind the ears.  That depression is where such ticks can grow quite large.  Smaller blackish ticks can occur all along the dorsum, and you can spot them by looking for protrusions in the pattern of the outer scales.  Ticks on fence lizards are more common than I used to think.

*

sagebrush liz, adult, Oquirrhs

early July 2012, sagebrush liz (Sceloporus graciosus), adult, W Oquirrh Mtns, Tooele Co, UT

*

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: