Northern Alligator Lizard

Northern Alligator Lizard

Kingdom
Phylum
Subphylum
Class
Order
Family
Genus
SPECIES
Elgaria coerulea
Population size
above 10,000
Life Span
5-8 yrs
LENGTH
27.5 cm

The Northern alligator lizard is a medium-sized reptile native to the North American west coast. It has a distinct skin fold on each side, separating the keeled scales on the back from the smooth ventral scales. The skin varies in color but can be brown and white or greenish-yellow and brown. Dorsally, this lizard is brownish in color and often has dark blotches that sometimes blend together into bands. The throat and mouth area of some young individuals can be yellow. The belly is light gray and the eyes are dark.

Di

Diurnal

Ca

Carnivore

In

Insectivores

Te

Terrestrial

Pr

Predator

Pr

Precocial

Bu

Burrowing

Ov

Oviparous

So

Social

No

Not a migrant

Hi

Hibernating

N

starts with

Distribution

Geography

Continents
Biogeographical realms

Northern alligator lizards occur along the Pacific Coast and in the Rocky Mountains from southern British Columbia through Washington, northern Idaho, and western Montana south through Oregon to the coastal range and the Sierra Nevada in central California. These lizards live in a variety of forested habitats, montane chaparral, and in areas along streams.

Northern Alligator Lizard habitat map

Climate zones

Habits and Lifestyle

Northern alligator lizards are diurnal social creatures. During warm summer days they often warm in groups under warm rocks, bark, or in rotten logs. In winter they hibernate in burrows under the ground. Northern alligator lizards are very secretive and when sensing danger they flee to the nearest safe place and hide; if captured they may bite or detach their tail. They are also very good swimmers and often use water to avoid predators.

Group name
Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition

Northern alligator lizards are carnivores (insectivores). Their diet includes crickets, beetles, spiders, and moths, but they will also take larger prey, such as small lizards, and will even eat small baby mice if given the opportunity.

Mating Habits

REPRODUCTION SEASON
spring
BABY CARRYING
1-15 young
INDEPENDENT AGE
at birth
BABY NAME
hatchling

Northern alligator lizards breed in spring when they emerge after hibernation. Females reproduce every 2 years and give birth up to 15 live young (typically 4-5) between June and September. Hatchlings are born fully-developed and are able to take care of themselves at birth.

Population

Population threats

Northern alligator lizards are not endangered at present, however, they suffer greatly from continuous destruction of their habitat.

Population number

According to the IUCN Red List, the total adult population size of the Northern alligator lizard is unknown but surely exceeds 10,000 individuals. Currently, this species is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List and its numbers today are stable.

References

1. Northern Alligator Lizard on Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_alligator_lizard
2. Northern Alligator Lizard on The IUCN Red List site - https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/63701/12706801

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