7 Amazing Facts You Never Really Wanted to Know About Lizards
As we’re all aware, next Friday the 14th of August is World Lizard Day! I’m sure you’re at home right now working hard to prepare your lizard costumes and celebration materials…
Wait…you’ve never heard of world Lizard Day? Okay, neither had we, but it’s a totally real thing celebrated by lizard lovers around the world. World Lizard Day breaks borders across the globe to bring us all together in celebration of…well, lizards.
In honor of this event, we’ve dug up 7 amazing facts about our best scaly green friends. Enjoy!
1. Some of them have no legs
In the United Kingdom, we only have three species of lizard. One of them however, is extremely unique. Meet the slow worm. He looks like a snake, but he is technically a ‘legless lizard’, so classified because he has eyelids and external ear holes, unlike a snake.
2. Some of them could eat you whole…but they make great pets
The first live capture of this lizard inspired the original 1933 movie King Kong! And rightly so, the Komodo dragon is one of the most aggressive and ferocious animals in the world. This hefty carnivore weighs around 70kg and grows up to 3 meters in length. It can run up to 12mph, has huge gaping jaws with poisonous saliva and inch long claws on each toe. In the wild they are extremely dangerous and known for attacking humans.
In captivity however, the Komodo dragon is renowned for being friendly when tamed. With professional care, they have been described as developing personalities a little like a dog. They are affectionate and enjoy being stroked. However, if their hunting instinct is triggered they become extremely dangerous. Don’t try to take one home!
3. Some of them can squirt blood out of their eyes
This rather unpleasant trait is characteristic of the horned lizard genus. These spiky customers can artificially increase their blood pressure to burst blood vessels underneath the eye, resulting in a five-foot spurt of lizard blood. The lizard uses it to ward of large predators and avoid being eaten.
4. Some of them can walk on water
The Basilisk lizard is sometimes nicknamed the ‘Jesus Christ lizard’ for its miraculous skill. This lizard is so light, and moves so fast, that it’s been spotted walking on the surface of ponds and rivers. It’s also extremely cute and green (awwwww).
5. Some of them live to well over 100 years old
The Tuatara lizard is native to New Zealand and is amongst the long-living animals on earth. They can live up to well over 100 years old, and some scientists believe they have found specimens around 200 years old! The name Tuatara is derived from the Maori language and means ‘peaks on the back’.
6. Some of them are edible
Iguana meat is a traditional food in some parts of Mexico and Central America. It is most often parboiled in saltwater before being roasted or cooked in a stew and is (apparently) delicious.
7. Some of them might attack your house