Posted by Christopher
Note by Scot: As part of the kid's school, we are planning to ask them to do some research about the interesting environments they will find themselves in this year. We figure this can help them learn about science, biology, history, geography, as well as researching topics, and give them some practice writing. So, periodically we will publish some of their work on the blog. The first of these reports is this one Christopher did on the weird little lizards we have seen all over Florida. They are as thick as squirrels around here, and I got to wondering about them, so I asked Christopher to research them for me. Here is what he found:
You would think this is crazy if you're where I'm from, but we have been seeing these funny tiny lizard’s darting around everywhere. As part of school, I was given the scientific assignment of researching them.
The “tiny lizards in Florida” also known as anoles (ann-oh-leez) come in many different varieties such as the Green Anole, Knight Anole, Bark Anole and the Brown Anole. These surprisingly well adapted creatures stalk insects from shrubs and other greenery. Much like the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park, they only stalk live prey because they cannot differentiate dead prey from the environment.
So far, in Florida we have mainly spotted the Brown Anole also known as the Anolis sagrei. Their range has been widespread due to being sold as pets, so they currently inhabit Cuba, The Bahamas, Florida, Georgia, Texas, Taiwan, Hawaii, Southern California and many other Caribbean Islands.
The Brown Anole can reach up to 9 inches in length, and weigh about 2 to 5 grams. They will live for about 18 months in captivity, although they can live up to a maximum of five years in the wild.
The Brown Anole will begin to establish territories during the spring in preparation for breeding in the summer. In order to maintain population, the female hatches an average of 1 egg a week during breeding season. Eggs will hatch about four weeks after being laid and the anoles will become adult size by the end of the year.
Sources: Wiki , Google images, Top Voted Yahoo Answers, Vigil, Stacey (2006)