Long-nosed Leopard Lizard

Discussion in 'Nature & Wildlife' started by abraxas, Oct 18, 2008.

  1. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Gambelia wislizenii
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    I'm starting to favor these lizards over the Chuckwalla. They exhibit "freeze behavior", when threatened, meaning they just stop and don't move hoping you haven't seen them. I spent about three minutes shooting this one from my truck window. I was sure that if I opened the door to try to get some better shots, it'd bolt.

    http://digital-desert.com/wildlife/long-nosed-leopard-lizard.html
     
  2. Antarctican

    Antarctican TPF Noob!

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    Wow, wonderful job getting that detail (right down to the sun glinting off the scales on its back). You can see every little scale on it! And according to the link you provided, the lizard was probably only about 4-5 inches long. And you took the pic from your truck window? Wow! :thumbup:
     
  3. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Thank you. I think the description is a little conservative- but maybe off by an inch or so in this case. The photo in the link was taken out at Joshua Tree National Park, and the lizard there was a least a foot long, but including the tail. Very well fed.

    Also in the link, it mentions snout to "vent." The "vent" is a little closer to the end of the nose than I think one would imagine.

    [​IMG]
    This shot is the vent of a spiny lizard. Although a different species, I think the undercarriage/basic proportions are similar. Check out the snout on the spiny lizard, you can see why the long-nosed lizard is called such.

    The long-nosed lizard is very docile with its "freezing". The link shot was taken while the temperature was very cool. Being primarily herbivores, they don't like to waste energy on dashing about. They move slow in cool temperatures. I was able to get about a foot away from the linked lizard. This lighter-colored lizard was shot in about 80-85 degree temp. It was able to move pretty fast. I spotted it while driving up a sandy road, slowed down and turned the engine off. I used the window opening to brace the camera and shot a few with 18-55 on my d80, then switched to my d70 with 18-135. After a gew more shots I switched lenses on the d80 to 70-300mm, and snapped this one. I missed the dof just a little, but good enough for my purposes. I think it caught a glint off of my glass and it took off.

    Regarding the accuracy in the link, I find it interesting that the page says they are not active past August, yet this was spotted in the middle of October. I've spoke to a couple biologists about things I've seen that vary from documented behavior, and have been told, "We don't know everything, and rely on your personal observances." Last year I spotted a Mojave fringe-toed lizard that was a good 2.5-3 inches longer (snout to vent) than the average size documented. Not earth-shaking stuff, but sometimes way out there, there is nothing better to do. Hm, I wonder what they taste like?
     
  4. Antarctican

    Antarctican TPF Noob!

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    I'd say 'chicken'! :lol:

    Thanks for all that info and the links. Interesting stuff, and I appreciate you providing it.
     
  5. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    That's cool, around here I don't get much chance to use it. The people I know that are into it know infinitely more than me and the rest don't care- so thanks for reading and saying something :)

    Chicken eh? A couple years ago the taste of rattlesnake was discussed during a group camping trip. Of course it was brought up that they probably taste like chicken. Some in the group claimed that they'd try it. I said, "you are what you eat. I'd surmise that since rattlesnakes ate rabbits, rats, pets and kids that wandered away from the campsite, snakes would most likely taste like rabbits, rats, pets and kids." We all agreed we'd still try it anyhow, but not one kid wandered away from the campsite.
     
  6. Antarctican

    Antarctican TPF Noob!

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    :biglaugh:



    I've tasted rattlesnake (a long long time ago, on a dare), and it tasted like chicken. As I recall, it looked like it too...it looked like fried white meat.
     
  7. abraxas

    abraxas No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Chicken it is then :)

    I'm thinking my next barbeque I'll be serving chicken that I'll tell everyone is lizard.
     

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