24 August 2014

Anderson's Rock Agama - Tanoumah

Whilst birding in the Tanoumah area in July 2014 I saw many Anderson's Rock Agama Acanthocercus adramitanus most of which were sitting on top of boulders and rocks showing off their incredible blue colouration. They allow close approach and are very photogenic with the below photos taken in the Tanoumah Cliff area just to the north of the city. The species is endemic to the Arabian Peninsula, where it is found in west and south Arabia, from Taif (Saudi Arabia) in the north to Dhofar (Oman) in the east. Its range includes Oman, Yemen, and south western Saudi Arabia and is the most common species of Agama in Yemen. It is also common in Saudi Arabia where it occurs on rocks in mountainous areas and is found to around 2,000 metres above sea level. Populations can be found on vertical rocks, rock steps and amongst boulders often in the vicinity of water. They can occur in precipitous wadis surrounded by dense vegetation, with the animals usually seen on the top of boulders. They do not however require water, obtaining moisture from their insect prey.