22 March 2018

Blanford's Short-nosed Desert Lizard – Jebal Hamrah

Whilst birdwatching at Jebal Hamrah recently I found a Blandford's Short-nosed Desert Lizard or Short-nosed Lizard. It is a small to medium-sized, slightly depressed lizard, with a maximum length of 55 millimetres  Snout distinctly short and nasal areas somewhat swollen. Lower eyelid with a window made of two large, semi-transparent scales of roughly equal size. Dorsal side of tibia covered with smooth scales. Dorsal surfaces pinkish gray, with reddish and light spots, which might form a weak striated pattern; reddish spots are larger on the flanks and sides of tail. This species ranges from Turkey, through much of Syria, eastern Lebanon, and most of Jordan to the northern Arabian Peninsula (northern and eastern Saudi Arabia, Kuwait United Arab Emirates), east to Iraq, Iran, Pakistan and Punjab, northern India. It occurs from sea-level up to at least 900 m. There is also an isolated population in the southern part of the Sinai Peninsula (Egypt). They are found in a wide variety of arid areas with hard substrates. It can be found on gravelly plains with sparse vegetation, and in coastal areas. It is also known from gravel plains and blown sand areas in wadis. The female lays five clutches of between one and six eggs per year. I thank Mansur Al-Fahad for the identification of this lizard.
Blanford's Short-nosed Desert Lizard