Caresheet For Sandlizards – Lacerta agilis

Subspecies and spreading:

Lacerta agilis agilis , West Europe and western middle Europe.

Lacerta agilis argus, Eastern middle Europe and north Balkan, northeast Italy.

Lacerta agilis boemica, Northeastern Caucasus.

Lacerta agilis bosnica, Jugoslavian mountains, Bulgaria and north Greece.

Lacerta agilis brevicaudata, Transcaucasia and northeast Turkey.

Lacerta agilis exigua, Easter of Dnjepr river and northern of Caucasus, east of Lake Baikal and to Issyk-Kul and nothwest China.

Lacerta agilis grusinica, Caucasian coast of Black sea and adjacent coast of northeast Turkey.

Lacerta agilis chersonensis, Bulgarian and Romanian lowlands, eastern Poland and western Russia.

Lacerta agilis ioriensis, Upper reaches of river Iori in Caucasus.

Description:

Snout-Ventral Length ( SVL) of approximatley 8 cm´s and tail about 1,5 times the SVL.

Colours and patterns vary between subspecies and populations. Predominant brown of gray ground-colour with numerous dark brown or black spots, particularly along a darker dorsalstripe. The species exhibits sexual dimorphism witch is particularly apparent in the breedingseason, when the males turn vivid green along the flanks. Males have a broader head, are stockier built and are on average slightly larger than females. Juveniles are similar in colour to the adults but lack green pigmentation. Hatchlings measure about 2 cm´s SVL, about 5,5 cm´s to 6,5 cm´s in total length.

Maximum life span is 12 years.

Habitat:

The species prefer heathlands with sand or sandy soil, it also inhabits sand-dune habitats in a few areas. This species also have a preference for southerly facing slopes especially at the northley altitudes. Theese areas are also needed for egglaying and incubating eggs during the breedingseason.

Terrarium:

Indoor:

A pair should be kept in a terrarium measuring minimum 50 cm´s X 30 cm´s X 30 cm´s with sand as substrate, a part of it kept moisted and a part dry at a depth of 10 – 15 cm´s. Moisted sand of this depth ensures the females to excavate burrows in witch they lay their eggs, also to increase the relative humidity in the enclosure. Note that the males are territorial, so only one male / enclosure.

Pieces of bark, pieces of claypots, low branches and leafs are also added to provide cover and climbing-possibility.

Provide a waterbowl, but also spray water every morning or evening to ensure that the animals are drinking.

A spotlight over a piece of bark makes a good baskingspot, the species need UV-B lighting. Temperatures ranging from 25° C to 27° C daytime, and reaching 35° C on the baskingspot. Night temperature drop to 14° C to 18° C. Daytime photoperiod remains at a constant 12-14 hours / day in the summer.

Outdoor:

An enclosure measuring 3 X 4 meters can hold 2 males and 2 females of this species.

Enclosure should be well planted with a variety of vegetation to mimic natural habitats. Logs / heavy roots and flat stones / rocks or slabs for basking spots and for cover needs to be provided. Flowering plants are good to use to attract insects for variated natural food. Feed with some crickets every now and then to ensure that the animals are getting as much food as needed. Use a watering can to give the enclosure and the animals a gentle shower of drinking water once every day.

Reproduction:

This species require a hibernatingperiod, in order to trigger matingbehaviour in the springtime. This is done by putting the animals in a aerated box with deep moisted Sphagnum-moss layer/bedding. The box is put in the refrigerator at a temperature of approximatley 4° C for about 4 – 5 months, November to April.

Mating take place between March and May and the eggs are laid from late May to July.

Northern populations lay a single clutch of eggs, and more southern populations up to 2 clutches a year. 4 to 18 eggs /clutch, witch take about 12 weeks to hatch.

Food:

The lizards will accept allmost all kind of insects, earth worms and occasionally sweet fruit and flowers. All food that is not from the outdoor enclosure should be dusted with vitamines and calsiumsupplements.




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