Desert Night Lizard

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Desert Night Lizard


Mohave desert, Arizona, south eastern Utah, California coast, south into Mexico.


It hides mainly under trunks and leaves of dead yuccas, as well as in crevices among rocks.


The body is nearly cylindrical with a long tapered tail and very short limbs. The digits are narrow and clawed. Its color can vary from smoke gray through many shades of yellow and brown as well as being covered with dark dots or spots. It has the ability to change its color and it lacks functional eyelids.

Desert Night Lizard

Contrary to its name, this animal is actually mostly diurnal, continuing some activity after dark (crepuscular). When frightened in the daylight the lizard will become very light in color. It does not show any desire to burrow.


The species is ovoviparous. After a gestation of 120 days females usually gives birth to 1 – 3 offspring, August through October.

About Our Animals:

This animal species is not currently in the Zoo\\\\\\\'s collection.

Desert Night Lizard
Native Utah Animal
See what other animals are Native to Utah.

Class: reptiles
Genus: Xantusia
Species: vigilis
Length: 1 1/2 to 2 3/4 inches
Wild Diet: It will eat small insects, beetles, and spiders\\\\\\\' eggs.
Zoo Diet: Crickets, fruit flies
Predators: Raptors and large snakes.
USFWS Status: Not Listed
CITES Status: Not Listed
Where at the Zoo? Small Animal Building: Desert Zone

Learn more about reptiles or animals from North America!
Or, cross-reference the two!





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