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Lie...Lay...Lizard! [May. 4th, 2008|03:34 pm]
Wizard of Changes -- ©cdozo 2004 to 2015
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Driving on the road by the land yesterday, I saw a really fat Texas Spiny Lizard. It sat still long enough for me to take a picture:

Pregnant Texas Spiny Lizard

Later I saw another really fat Texas Spiny Lizard. This one was sitting in a hole with its head and front legs sticking out. I thought it must be hiding in the hole and catching bugs as they walked by. I'd never heard of a lizard hunting like that, so I was interested. I tried to take a picture, but the lizard ran away. I took a photograph of the hole with my finger close by for a size reference:

Texas Spiny Lizard's Nest

Before I left, I went back to the hole to see it the lizard was back in the hole. It wasn't. The hole was filled in, but the lizard was right nearby. I took a picture of it and headed out:

Texas Spiny Lizard Momma

By the time I got home I had figured out what the lizard was doing in the hole. It was the same fat lizard I first saw driving in. But it wasn't fat, it she was pregnant. When I saw her in the hole, she was laying eggs. When I saw her later on, she had buried the eggs and was resting. And I disturbed her twice. I feel bad about that. :-(

This morning, I blew up the photograph I took of the hole. I could just barely see a lizard egg down inside:

Texas Spiny Lizard's Egg

I'm pretty sure it's not a pebble, because the lizard dug dirt that I'd worked for some plantings I did last week. I cleaned the dirt really well and taking out any rocks and pebbles as I went along. So I'm pretty sure that's a Spiny Texas Lizard egg in the middle of the picture.
 
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2008-05-05 03:54 am (UTC)

It's an egg

If you pushed a little more dirt on top of it, it'd be less noticeable to raccoons and such. Raccoons love to dig up lizard and turtle eggs.

Then again, raccoons have to eat, too.
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[User Picture]From: cdozo
2008-05-06 03:46 am (UTC)

Re: It's an egg

The hole was pretty invisible when I left. I bet the rain smoothed it the rest of the way.

The raccoons eat so many turtle eggs it's surprising there are any eggs left for turtles to hatch out of. I haven't seen any evidence of them eating lizard eggs yet, but I'll keep an eye out.

Did you hear that there's a mountain lion around? I told G to watch for it. Last fall I found a giant paw print at the end of the driveway. Now I wonder...
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[User Picture]From: e_moon60
2008-05-06 03:53 am (UTC)

Re: It's an egg

Heard that on the news. I knew mountain lions were still around in the Hill Country west of Austin, but as those canyon-y areas get developed, the lions have to move *somewhere*. Richard would love to have one on our place (part time--we don't have the resources for it full time and really there's not enough cover around us.) I'd rather have a bobcat...we don't have enough resources for one of those full time, even, but there has been one using the creek-corridor off and on. I've found bobcat tracks and heard one once.

The one I heard about in our county was well away from where you are, but riparian corridors do attract wildlife, as you know.

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[User Picture]From: cdozo
2008-05-06 04:11 am (UTC)

Re: It's an egg

Folks who live around my land say there's a bobcat in the area. They also say there are some alligators. I don't know if it's true. But when I was a hitchhiker I learned to take all warnings seriously the morning I went to sit down on a log by my campsite and it swam away.

Tonight a woman at the Y said she had encountered a mountain lion in Colorado. She'd been up on a mountain with her infant son and was getting ready to leave. She put the kid in a baby backpack and was gathering her stuff when she looked up in a tree and saw a mountain lion looking down at her. So she picked up her kid and backed down the trail.
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