Saturday, September 30, 2006

An attacking snake

An advancing snake intent on attack!!!
But not a worry, it is only a legless lizard trying on a very big bluff. Better known as a Common Scaly-foot Lizard, or Pygopus lepidopodus. It was encountered in the morning on a sandy track and instead of quickly slithering into the vegetation on either side, decided to stay and bluff it out. It obviously worked because after taking my photos, it was me who moved along first.

Common Scaly-foot Lizard, Pygopus lepidopodus

Notice the rounded fleshy tongue, this is an obvious difference that separates these lizards from snakes that have slender forked ones. They occur across the southern part of Australia from the west to the east coast in heaths and open woodland. Their diet consists largely of arthropods particularly spiders and scorpions.


huntervalley said...

With a raised forebody and closed mouth as in your first picture, it's imitation of an aggressive snake looks plenty convincing enough for me to take a few hasty steps backwards :)

I've read that this lizard has a prehensile tail. This sounds pretty unique for a lizard!

Beaut creature!


Esperance Blog said...

Hi Huntervalley, thanks for your comments.

Not sure if the tail is prehensile, ie able to grasp things, but it is certainly very flexible.


Junior Lepid said...

I've only encountered one legless lizard and that was many years ago!

Love these shots!

Esperance Blog said...

Many thanks Junior lepid. I see most of the legless lizards during spring to early summer, after that they become very secretive.