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Calotes Angleheads Dragon Lizards and Relatives: Agamidae

Physical Description

Agamids can be rather plain, or they can look quite strange and unusual. Their bodies may have crests, or ridges of large spines, on the back and tail. They may have neck frills and folds and body decorations, such as lumps and spines on the head. Some agamids have dewlaps, or throat fans.

Agamids come in many colors. Some are gray, brown, or black, but they may also have more showy colors. The Thai water dragon is bright green with golden eyes. The rainbow lizard is yellow or orange on top and blue on the bottom. Some species, or types, can change color rapidly, depending on their mood. Their lengths range from 10 inches (25.4 centimeters) to 36 inches (91.4 centimeters). In many species, males look different from females. They often have brighter colors, especially during the mating season, and bigger body parts, such as heads. All agamids have four well-developed limbs, or legs. There are usually five toes on each foot.

The head of an agamid is large and triangular, with a visible neck area. They all have movable eyelids and a circular pupil. In most agamids the ear opening is on the side of the head. Body scales are rough or spiny in most species. Some agaminds have a small or large crest, like a fin of scales, along their backs. Unlike some other lizards, agamids never lose their long tails when chased by a predator (PREH-duh-ter), or an animal that hunts the agamid for food.

Additional topics

Animal Life ResourceDinosaurs, Snakes, and Other ReptilesCalotes Angleheads Dragon Lizards and Relatives: Agamidae - Physical Description, Behavior And Reproduction, Spiny Agama (agama Hispida): Species Accounts, Frilled Lizard (chlamydosaurus Kingii):species Accounts - GEOGRAPHIC RANGE, HABITAT, DIET, AGAMIDS