Sunday, 21 March 2010

Lizards Emerge From Long Hibernation

After a particularly cold winter in Worcestershire, it was a relief to see my lizards emerge from their five months of hibernation. The P. muralis were very active today searching for food after basking in the warm spring sunlight.

When they first emerge the colour of the male L. viridis is very dull, being a pale green with a greyish head. How different he will look in a few weeks time, being bright green with black stippling and a beautiful blue throat.

The outdoor vivarium is two metres square with 4mm glass walls on a breeze block base. When it was first constructed underground chambers were built in to act as frost free hibernaculi, the lizards tend to use these both for hibernating and for chilling out in very hot weather.
At the back there is a log pile on one side and a stack of boulders on the other, it then slopes down to the front where there is a sandy area with more logs and a small, shallow pool. The vivarium is planted up with various plants to attract flying insects and is home to woodlice and ants, on which the lizards feed.

The back metre of the viv is covered with glass to provide a permanent dry area over the hibernaculi which are under the log/rock piles.
Today the garden pools were awash with over fifty mating frogs which croaked loudly all day!

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