Blue-tongue Lizard Season!
As the days get longer and warmer, it’s not just humans that are drawn out into the sunshine, out in the bush or even just lazing around your own backyard, you might catch sight of this season’s crop of baby Blue-tongues! Born in late January, they’re just getting big enough to be easily seen
Spotting a bluey in your backyard during Spring is more common than you think. Here’s what to do if you see one:
Spring is when you might spot one of Australia’s most iconic reptiles – the Blue-tongue lizard. This is when they start to come out of brumation – the lizard equivalent of hibernation – to warm up their cold blooded bodies, so it’s not uncommon to spot one sunning itself on your pavers at this time of year.
You might be tempted to remove these scaly reptiles from your backyard, but that should be your last resort. It’s important to understand they are harmless to you and your pets and provide a valuable pest control service to your home, snacking on snails, caterpillars, insects, and other garden pests.
You can be living in harmony with your new-found lizard friends in no time. Here’s everything you need to know, including some fun facts;
• Blue-tongues will only bite under extreme provocation. Their cobalt blue-tongue set against a bright pink mouth might look poisonous but their bite is non-venomous and mostly non-piercing. It’s more a bruise than a cut.
• Blue-tongues have a home range. This means that if the lizard lives in your backyard, the front yard will be totally foreign to it, so it won’t know where to find food, shelter, and water, and will be more prone to predators. For this reason, it’s best to avoid moving them.
• If the lizard has just moved into your yard it will usually run away from you, but after a while when it learns you are not a threat, it will allow itself to be more visible.
• Lizards are cold-blooded so they have to warm themselves up in the mornings to become active and to digest their food, which is why you will often see them basking in the morning sun.
• Like most intelligent animals, they avoid the heat of the day and, in hot weather, may become active in the evenings when it’s cooler.
• It’s illegal to catch blue-tongues and sell them or keep them as pets. If you want a pet lizard, head to your local pet shop.
• Blue-tongues see snails as a delicacy. So don’t use snail pellets around your yard. If a poisoned snail is eaten by a blue-tongue, the lizard could die.
• Be careful when you use lawn mowers and whipper snippers. Lots of lizards are killed or injured by them.
Blue-tongue lizards are found in just about every part of Australia: on the coastal plains; in the mountains; in rainforest; deserts and at least one species is found in every Australian capital city. So, whether you live in Kakadu or Melbourne, just about everyone should be able to see one in their neighbourhood!
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