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Fence Lizard

Fence Lizard

Sceloporus undulatus                                          Photo Fiona Sunquist ©

Fence lizards are dichromatic – that is to say, the sexes are colored differently.  Females are darker than males and their gray-brown backs are marked with about eight dark-colored, irregular, transverse bars.  The transverse bars on males are red brown, and males also have two large, bright blue belly patches.

Fence Lizards Female and Male

                                                                           Photo Fiona Sunquist ©

The scales of fence lizards have prominent keels, and each scale has an obvious spine, giving the animal a very ‘rough skinned’ look.   Both sexes are similar in size, about 5 to 6.5 inches long (13-17 cm).

Fence lizards are quite common throughout the northern half of Florida.  Look for them around rocks, woodpiles, abandoned buildings, and fence posts.  These lizards are active and alert, and usually move to the other side of the tree or fence post if you approach them.  They are often seen basking.   Adult males are highly territorial, and defend their areas with head bobs and push-up threat displays.  Breeding season is April to August.



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Wildlife of Florida 2011
Wildlife of Florida 2011
Fiona Sunquist
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Wildlife of Florida: Lizards
Fiona Sunquist
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