For the identification of insects and other fauna and flora of South Africa: please click on the following links:
Insects and related species: Antlions - Ants - Bees - Beetles - Bugs - Butterflies, Moths and Caterpillars - Centipedes and Millipedes - Cockroaches - Crickets - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Grasshoppers and Katydids - Mantis - Stick Insects - Ticks and Mites - Wasps - Woodlice
Plants, Trees, Flowers: (Note: Unless plants fall into a specific species such as Cacti, they have been classified by their flower colour to make them easier to find) Bonsai - Cacti, Succulents, Aloes, Euplorbia - Ferns and Cycads - Flowers - Fungi, Lichen and Moss - Grass - Trees
Animals, Birds, Reptiles etc.: Animals, Birds, Fish and Crabs - Frogs - Lizards - Scorpions - Snails and Slugs - Snakes - Spiders - Tortoise, Turtles and Terrapins - Whipscorpions
Other photography: Aeroplanes - Cars and Bikes - Travel - Sunrise - Water drops/falls - Sudwala and Sterkfontein Caves etc.

Videos: YouTube

Friday, January 9, 2009

Bearded Dragon Lizard

It is the earhole of the Dragon Lizard. The more I see these, the more I want to get one!!

Bearded Dragons (also known as the fire breathing lizard) have broad triangular heads and flattened bodies, with adults reaching approximately 18 to 24 inches (45-60 cm or 1 1/2 ft-2 ft) from head to tail. When threatened, they will expand a spiny pouch under their jaw, as well as inhale air and puff up to make them appear larger. The pouch resembles a beard, lending the animal their name. Males and females are of comparable size, although males usually sport a larger head and a thicker tail base than the females. Mature males will turn their throat pouches black during courtship and to signal dominance, although females have also been known to do the same.
Many Bearded Dragon habitats are dry and sparsely vegetated, so food may often be difficult to find. As a result, Bearded Dragons are omnivorous, capable of subsisting on a wide variety of food sources, including both insects and vegetable food. A typical diet for captive Bearded Dragons includes leafy greens and vegetables, and regular meals of feeder insects. Their stomachs are large enough to accommodate large quantities of food. Young Bearded Dragons do not eat as much vegetation as their adult counterparts. As a Bearded Dragon ages it may be persuaded to eat less animal matter and more plants, maybe leveling off at around an 80% plant and 20%.
Avocado and Rhubarb are lethal to Dragons as well as birds. Spinach contains high oxalates which bind to calcium and in large amounts can lead to metabolic bone disease. If a bearded dragon's digestive tract is healthy, and it receives adequate UV light and temperatures, it will get significant benefits - including absorption of calcium - from calcium-rich food plants that also contain oxalic acid.
Bearded Dragons bask most of the day, absorbing the heat they need to digest their food. It is important that there are at least one or two good basking spots in the Dragon's habitat. Rocks are preferable to logs as they hold heat better, though logs can also provide stimulation for the animal, which will use them for climbing. Any item taken from the outside must first be boiled or baked, however, to remove contaminants. The habitat should also include something the dragon can hide under.

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