Lacerta vivipara - Common LizardCommon lizard

Taxonomy

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Reptilia

Order: Squamata

Family: Lacertidae

Common lizards prefer warm sheltered habitats with nearby dry places where they can bask in the sunshine. In Wales they are often seen in and around dry stone walls or along railway tracks, where they bask on the stone ballast beside and between the tracks.

Unlike newts, for which they are sometimes mistaken, lizards have dry skin. They are most easily found in springtime, when they are emerging sleepily from hibernation. By mid summer, lizards are very much quicker at scampering away when they are approached.

The common lizard is also known as the viviparous lizard, because it gives birth to live offspring. A fully-grown adult can be up to 14 cm long. The diet of these fascinating reptiles comprises mainly insects.

Common lizard with young