Lacerta bilineata (NL: Westelijke smaragdhagedis / EN: Western Green Lizard / DE: Westliche Smaragdeidechse / FR: Lézard vert occidental, Lézard à deux bandes) is a wall lizard of the Lacertidae family. The species was first described by Daudin in 1802 and formally part of Lacerta virids until recently. Lacerta from Latin meaning lizard, bilineata comes from latin and is composed of two words, the first meaning 'double', 'two' and the second meaning 'line', this name has been given due to the juveniles and sub-adults two lines on the top of the flanks. They are characterised by their lime green scales, males are characterised by their often blue throat. They hatch at around 3 to 4 cm long, averaging about 13 cm long growing up to sometimes 15 cm long (measures not including tail, max. adult size tail included is up to 40 cm long). It is found in Andorra, Austria, Croatia, France, Germany, Italy, Monaco, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, on Jersey in the British Isles, and the United States. Their typical habitat consists green areas rich in water, in dry areas they can be found near the river where tall green leafed trees grow and there is green grass. They otherwise need a large area of open grassland with a lot of heavy dense vegetation scattered around. They are very common at the edges of woods where they can come out into open areas and live in the dense bushes at the woods edge. It is threatened by habitat loss.
Image: Soglio (CH) – 12/07/2012
© Johan Dierckx
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