Eyed Lizard Scientific Name: Lacerta lepida
Many Jeweled Lacertas can reach two feet (80 centimeters) in length, and they have stocky body types. Their necks are well defined, and their heads are triangular in shape. The toes and nails of Jeweled Lacertas tend to be long, and can aid in burrowing. Their tails are also long and do not regenerate well, if at all, so care should be taken not to break these appendages. Male Jeweled Lacertas often have heavier jowls than females. Their heads and femoral pores are also broader than those of females. In color, the lovely Jeweled Lacerta is a brilliant green. Iridescent spots, much like those seen at the tops of peacock feathers, adorn their sides.
Usually, adult Jeweled Lacertas can be housed comfortably in pairs, in a 40 gallon tank; though, if possible, 65 gallons is preferred. Before they reach about 11 inches in length, they can be housed in 20 to 30 gallon tanks. The terrarium should be horizontally oriented but should provide lots of climbing options. During the day, the coolest end of the enclosure should be about 75 degrees Fahrenheit, and a basking spot kept between 90 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit should be provided. Jeweled Lacertas have been reported to be good escape artists so care must be taken when opening and closing their enclosures. Because younger Jeweled Lacertas may be more prone to digestive impactions, it may be advisable to keep them on paper towels or newspaper. Once they are about ten inches long, they may be allowed a more natural substrate. This may often be a mix of playground sand and potting soil, that will allow the Lacertas to burrow and can also aid in maintaining humidity. Usually, a gradient of about six inches of substrate on one end of the tank and about two inches on the other can allow the Lacertas a more natural habitat conducive to burrowing and humidity maintenance. Plenty of secure rocks and branches should be provided as hiding places and also for basking spots. Young Jeweled Lacertas should be separated for meal times. Mature Jeweled Lacertas can be fed the same insects that young lizards are fed, and can also eat pinkie mice. A plastic shoebox filled with about one and a half inches of water makes a nice pond for Jeweled Lacertas to drink from and soak in. Breeding Jeweled Lacertas can be bred in captivity when kept together in pairs, though sometimes fertility problems occur. The hatchling Jeweled Lacertas should only be offered shallow water bowls under supervision, lest they drown. Twice daily misting can provide a good amount of humidity for them. Hatchlings should be allowed quarter inch crickets twice a day, and may be offered as many as they can eat in a 15 minute period. They should be separated from each other before you feed them, so they do not harm one another. By the time they are two months old, they can be allowed freshly shed mealworms and crickets that are about half an inch long. At four months, Jeweled Lacertas can begin to eat superworms and larger crickets.
Found in southwestern regions of Europe, including Spain, southern France, northwestern Africa, and northwestern Italy
Lacerta - Jeweled Foods
Jeweled Lacertas also spend time hunting for insects and small animals that they can eat.
Lacerta - Jeweled Behavior
With its brilliant coloration and active nature, the Jeweled Lacerta can make a fine pet for a beginning enthusiast or for an experienced herpetologist. These lovely animals are often kept as pets in Europe, and are popular in other parts of the world as well. In the wild, Jeweled Lacertas live in breeding pairs. These Lacertas are primarily terrestrial and are quite active, making an enjoyable pet to view in captivity. They spend much of their time basking and burrowing, and hiding under branches, rocks, or foliage. They can also climb quite well.Especially when young, Jeweled Lacertas should be handled frequently. If they do not interact often with people, they can quickly become skittish or wild. They have been known to bite, so care should be taken.
Jeweled Lacertas are generally found in southwestern regions of Europe, including Spain, southern France, northwestern Africa, and northwestern Italy. More commonly kept in captivity in Europe than in other parts of the world, Jeweled Lacertas can make beautiful and rewarding pets, and are one of the largest lizards found in Europe.