Monday, April 23, 2012

Italian Wall Lizards

For the past several months my children have been referring to the lizards that call our backyard their home, our pets. They've even named them. The one with the long tail is Gabriel's, Mr. M.  The one with the short tail is Geode, which belongs to Ariel.  I don't have pictures of our third lizard, Wall-E, who lives in a rock garden in front of our home.

I have been a little put on edge by them as I'm not fond of any animals or reptiles.I don't know if these lizards are the same ones, but we've been a home to this type of lizard for several years now. And they always choose the same part of our yard to live in.

I had to laugh when I read this on Wikipedia "Its natural habitats are Mediterranean-type shrubby vegetation, rocky areas, rocky shores, sandy shores, rural gardens, pastureland, plantations and urban areas." They actually do live by the rocks in my yard, and on my patio.

The story behind these Italian Wall Lizards is quite fascinating.  Several years ago in the 1950s or 60s it is rumored that a pet store either released these lizards, or the lizards escaped. Whatever the purpose behind it, the lizards appear to be well established in my backyard some 50 years later.

Italian Wall Lizards

Italian Wall Lizards

Gabriel's lizard, Mr. M. lives in the back door of our home that we never use. The screen door doesn't seal completely, so we keep a towel in it to block the weather. I think he finds it quite cozy. This lizard is also really shy. He is very inquisitive, but holds back. You will commonly find him peeking his head out of the crack where the step meets the house. He will rarely show his entire body to us unless he's seeking refuge in between the two doors.

Italian Wall Lizards

Geode, the lizard with the tail that appears to be cut off or not fully grown is very friendly. He likes to come right up to you if you sit very still. The minute you move, he will run away. This has freaked me out on multiple occasions. 

When Zechariah or the kids play outside in the backyard, I love to join them by reading a book.  I normally will sit on the steps in front of our back doors.  However, the longer the lizards have lived with us, the more adventurous they seem to become.  I don't move around a lot, so periodically I find a lizard right at my feet or perching right behind me.  I have since taken to sitting on a chair.  I can ignore the rustle in the grass much better when I know I am elevated and don't have to worry that I might place a hand on top of a LIZARD.

Italian Wall Lizards

For all those people who complain that the city I live in is boring, we have intrigue and mystery all around us.  I have exotic lizards living in my backyard acting as pets to my children. 
How awesome is that?

3 comments:

  1. We have the same lizards in our yard too! Probably at least 5. Every stinkin time I head down the stair of my front porch I hear 2 different ones run back into the bushes! I jump almost everytime! Good to know the story behind it. :)

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    1. I feel like they're multiplying! We have at least 4. Now that I'm aware of them I see them constantly running around on my patio, trying to safely and quickly run past us.

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  2. Thank you for this info! We've just moved to Lawrence, KS and found lizards living around the patio of the house we've just purchased. I grew up in Topeka, but this is the first time I've lived with lizards. Your post helps me understand why! Interesting that they can survive the harsh NE Kansas winters!

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