Leaping Lesbian Lizard Facts
- Firstly, the Leaping Lesbian Lizard serves as the popular name for a particular New Mexico Whiptail Lizard. But what sets it apart is the fact that it was produced through the inter-breeding of two distinct native species of lizard.
- This astonishing lizard resulted from the mixing of the Little Striped Whiptail and the Western Whiptail. The hybridization of these species produces sterile males, however. But, the resourcefulness of Nature did not stop there.
- That’s because, the species achieved parthenogenesis, which is a type of asexual reproduction. This allows the resulting all-female population to reproduce. Therefore, the unusual lizard actually evolved into a separate species capable of reproduction.
- Furthermore, in fact, this combination of inter-species hybridization and parthenogenesis isn’t unique. It exists in other species within the animal kingdom. That’s due to the fact that the process exists as a reproductive strategy in several other known species of whiptail lizard.
- Finally, the astounding Leaping Lesbian Lizard also holds yet another distinction. This one, however, has nothing to do with any physical aspect of the amazing creature. That’s because this phenomenal reptile currently represents the official state reptile of the state of New Mexico.
Leaping Lesbian Lizard Physical Description
Most notably, the amazing Leaping Lesbian Lizard constitutes a small-to-moderate sized variety of lizard. That occurs due to the fact that the majority of individuals attain a total length measuring between 6.5 – 9.1 in (16.5 – 23 cm). Quite obviously, sexual dimorphism does not appear in this species.
In addition, its natural coloring typically presents as an overall brown or black. However, seven pale yellow stripes also from head to tail. Further, numerous light spots often occur between the stripes. The majority of individuals also have a white or pale blue underside, with a blue or blue-green colored throat.
Additionally, the body of the Leaping Lesbian Lizard develops a distinctive shape. That appears as distinctly slender, while the tail of the awesome reptile grows comparatively long. In fact, this particular shape, in combination with its coloring pattern, represents an evolutionary adaptation for camouflage in its native habitat.
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Reptilia
- Order: Squamata
- Family: Telidae
- Genus: Cnemidophorus
- Species: C. neomexicanus
Leaping Lesbian Lizard Behavior
Furthermore, like most other whiptail lizards, the Leaping Lesbian Lizard evolved as diurnal. Therefore, it is far more active in the daylight hours. It also evolved as entirely insectivorous in nature. In addition, it remains wary, energetic, and fast moving, frequently darting for cover if approached.
But, its reproductive methods separate it from most related types of lizards. When this reptile reproduces, the mother-to-be lays up to four unfertilized eggs. This action most commonly occurs in the mid-summer part of the year. These precious few eggs then typically hatch approximately eight weeks later.
Despite reproducing asexually, and being an all-female species, the Leaping Lesbian Lizard still engages in mating behavior with other females of its own species. Interestingly, a common theory suggests that this behavior stimulates ovulation. This belief occur due to the observed fact that those who do not mate do not lay eggs.
Leaping Lesbian Lizard Distribution, Habitat, and Ecology
Not surprisingly, the truly fascinating Leaping Lesbian Lizard evolved as native to a particularly arid environment. That highly specific range includes the southern United States and also northern Mexico, in North America.
However, even within these two regions, the Leaping Lesbian Lizard has specific areas it inhabits. As a result, in the United States it only appears in New Mexico and Arizona. Meanwhile, in Mexico, the species only lives in the area of Chihuahua.
The New Mexico Whiptail Lizard, as it is also known, also lives in a rather wide variety of semi-arid habitats. These regions include grassland, rocky areas, shrubland, or mountainside woodlands, proving its adaptability.