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Some Common Myths and Misconceptions About Lizards

Many of today’s reptile keepers are very well-informed consumers who have done their research online about the lizard they are about to acquire. There are also a number of popular shows focusing on reptiles and amphibians from around the world that help broaden the average person’s understanding of these rare and exotic animals. Unfortunately, there are still some myths and misconceptions about lizards and we hope to debunk some of the more obvious ones in this article.

One of the most common misconceptions that most novice reptile enthusiasts seem to have is that all large lizards are Komodo Dragons. Komodos seem to be the King Kong of Monitor Lizards with their impressive size and infamous name. The fact is that only zoos can house, exhibit and breed Komodo Dragons, and each one is owned by the Indonesian government, which strictly prohibits access to these rare creatures. They are located on five islands in Indonesia, where they are a huge attraction for tourists and bring a large part of the income of the local people. Although a close relative of the Komodo lizard that gets very large in size is the Indonesian Water Monitor, these animals can be sold and are not protected, so they are often the source of misunderstanding.

Another misconception about lizards for sale in captivity is based on the Central American Caiman lizards. These brightly colored cousins ​​of the Tegu lizard have a broad, metalled body that is very close in appearance to their South American caiman namesake. They grow to a manageable adult size of four feet and are usually found on or near tree branches above hanging rivers in Paraguay, Peru and Colombia. Although they have very sharp teeth that they use to capture and crush their prey consisting of snails, fish and invertebrates, Caiman lizards in captivity are calm and easy to handle. They can also be kept on a diet consisting of canned food, frozen snails and ground turkey or a monitor and tegu diet.

Another misconception is that all lizards have the ability to regenerate their tails, when in fact this is a rather confusing ability for some lizards and geckos, while for others it is impossible. The amazing ability to regenerate a part of the body is present in most geckos, most iguanas and tegus, while their close relatives completely lack this ability. Although the regenerated tail will never look the same as the original, the replacement is functional and much better than a stump. It is even possible for some of these animals to develop a forked or bifurcated tail if the damage is minor and not a complete break.

While many questions about Lizards and their habits and habitats have been answered by the hard work of researchers and breeders around the world, there are still many interesting facts that will come to light in the future. As always, do your due diligence and learn about your pet lizard’s individual needs for diet, lighting, habitat size, and longevity before making a purchase.

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