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28 April 2009 @ 05:47 pm
The Desert Horned Lizard  
Among the many interesting things that make a harsh desert their home, the Desert Horned Lizard is the only one that looks like a mythological beast - a dragon! Without wings of course.

They aren't as fast moving as some of the other desert specialist lizards. And they also aren't too shy because they think, and rightly so, that their camouflage works. And they look menacing too - with horns, spines and everything. This was the first time that I've seen a horned lizard and it turns out they are a common resident in the Desert Tortoise Natural Area and along with their superstar neighbors - the Desert Tortoise - these lizards make a trip to the DTNA an extremely interesting one.

Camouflage. It works.

Basking in the sun

A closer look...

Notice how flat their bodies are...

The Herpetologist on duty - Robert Villa - and a lizard. Robert is a passionate herpetologist and it was a pleasure learning a little bit about the inhabitants of the desert from him.

Seal sealwhiskers on April 29th, 2009 01:17 am (UTC)
oh, the horned lizard is simply gorgeous!!
Mel: Heron kendokamel on April 29th, 2009 01:24 am (UTC)
Very cool!
n2kaja n2kaja on April 29th, 2009 01:59 am (UTC)
what a beautiful creature!
deponti deponti on April 29th, 2009 02:15 am (UTC)
How long did it take you to spot this beauty? As long as the Desert Tortoise?

I do like the way you celebrate your birthdays!
Yathin yathin on April 29th, 2009 02:43 am (UTC)
I spotted this one before I saw a tortoise. The one basking in the sun was right next to the trail, so it was fairly easy spotting. :-)
purely_narcotic purely_narcotic on April 29th, 2009 02:17 am (UTC)
So beautiful a creature!
Aparna: Myself inspirethoughts on April 29th, 2009 03:19 am (UTC)
Very cool!

Just came back from watching the movie Earth. Amazing movie...loved it every minute. And was wondering how had they pictured all those amazing animals. They did show at the end title credits how they had done that. Thanks for sharing the link.
Yathin yathin on April 29th, 2009 03:26 am (UTC)
I have the full DVD set of the Planet Earth series. I've still not seen the movie, but will do this week/end.

Aparna: Myself inspirethoughts on April 29th, 2009 03:05 pm (UTC)
Wow! Cool! So, you must have pretty much watched everything already that they are showing in the movie.
kejn kejn on April 29th, 2009 04:15 am (UTC)

is that three different lizards? how many did you spot?
Yathin yathin on April 29th, 2009 04:55 am (UTC)
I spotted several of them, but photographed only two different individuals.
purely_narcotic purely_narcotic on April 29th, 2009 05:02 am (UTC)
Why you didn't point them out to me if you saw several of them?!
Yathin yathin on April 29th, 2009 05:09 am (UTC)
All of the several ones were at the Desert Tortoise Natural Area
Jayseaka redpirk on April 29th, 2009 04:25 am (UTC)
That thing is going to start throwing fire out of its mouth any second...

Cool pictures, as always :)
Yathin yathin on April 29th, 2009 05:10 am (UTC)
The fire and the wings are the only ones missing from proclaiming itself to be a dragon! I was so thrilled to see this one finally! :-)
mamtanaidu mamtanaidu on April 29th, 2009 06:16 am (UTC)

If we ever have a beauty pageant amongst lizards, this guy will win hands down! :)
Rafkoo rafkoo on April 29th, 2009 09:34 am (UTC)
Awesome .. The highest level of adoption abilities
octavia_combi octavia_combi on April 30th, 2009 03:01 pm (UTC)
That`s a pity that I`m a little bit far from California...