Thursday, July 2, 2015

I SAW A FEMALE LAY AN EGG and other tales from baby season.

Today, I saw one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen during my 5 summers in the field studying Anolis lizards. I watched a female anole lay an egg!!!!

I happened to come across this female while searching for lizards in one of the plots we are using for our study of A. gundlachi females. Through my binoculars, all I noticed at first was that she was an A. stratulus, and not who I was looking for. As I was about to pass over her, she stood over a small divot in the ground and BAM—laid an egg! I was so surprised I just sat there—I’ve never seen this before!

Unfortunately, I didn’t have my camera with me, but of course I had my handy iPhone. When I came to my senses, I scrambled to the ground as gently as possible, and recorded some frames of this female burying her egg. Watch the (poor quality) video below as she repeatedly butts the ground with her snout, and reaches for moist dirt and debris with her feet. At last, she smoothed the earth over the egg, took a deep breath, and hopped back to a Sierra Palm near by. How cool!

video


We have loved witnessing baby season here in Puerto Rico! We have managed to see juveniles of three anole species, at different stages of growth. Some are so tiny they must just be days old! Unfortunately, many of our photos don’t do their size justice. So, I’ve included a photo with my finger next to a juvenile A. stratulus to give you an idea.



We've started observing the behavior of A. gundlachi juveniles—stay tuned for more pictures and insights into the comings and goings of tiny lizards!

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