Sunday, May 25, 2014

Fun with Camouflage

 It felt like a desert by Noon.  Walking the power line just north of FRC on the road to Snake Lake, we were impressed by the hard-packed soil and the lack of vegetation other than Manzanita and various dead stems still standing after the early spring blooms.  Then a lizard dashed by and came to rest in the shade of a Manzanita (above).  It was rather brown, so I wondered if it might be a Sagebrush Lizard, Sceloporus graciosus, rather than the more common (around here) Fence Lizard (AKA, Blue Belly), Sceloporus occidentalis.  As I approached the resting lizard, I took my first shot while still 3 feet away.  I slowly moved closer and kept clicking (below), and he didn't move.
 Finally, I took my last shot (below) from less than a foot away!  He still didn't move!  Apparently, he knew my camera was harmless.  As soon as I reached one hand slowly forward, he took off.  So, I'll never know which lizard I saw unless I can see enough details on a big screen to identify it.  This is all the evidence I have.  He's pretty plump, so apparently there's no lack of appropriate food in this area - probably mostly ants and termites living under pine bark.
Click on any of these photos for a closer view, and maybe you could wager a guess as to which lizard it is.  Post your guess in the "comments."  Sorry, no prizes offered today.

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