They are also known as the Long-tailed grass lizard or the grass lizard. The name of this reptile derives from the length of its tail, which can grow four times longer than the actual length of their bodies. The long-tailed lizard is native to Southeast Asia, China, and Southern Russia. Find them in open, overgrown, and damp grasslands situated at the edge of forests.
Long tailed lizards are known to use their tail for balance and weight distribution as they move on top of tall grasses. This way, they move faster with excellent stability as they bask in the sun for a long time.
LONG TAILED LIZARDS: SPECIES OVERVIEW AND CARE
Appearance and Colors
Most popular reptiles have the camouflage effect, such as the Chameleon and the Long reptile lizard associated with it too. Their skin is dark greenish-brown that matches the grass with a light white-cream belly that blends in with the sky color. They can change color to pink, orange, or red shades when they are afraid or scared.
From a lower view, they camouflage as an elevated hunter. Each side of the lizard’s tail runs a brown stripe lined with a thin white or black border. An adult long-tailed lizard size is 10 to 12 inches, where the tail is 4/5th of the total length.
They have a long, slender body and a very long tail that is twice or more the length of its body. Long tailed lizards are thick-bodied with a flattened head, they have a single row of scales bordering their belly, and rows of large keeled scales cover it. The scales on the back are dark brown with lighter colored flecks giving them a slightly mottled look.
Long-Tailed Grass Lizard Behavior and Temperament
Long tailed lizards are gentle and easy-going, making them perfect for novice pet owners or individuals with one too many pets. The long-tailed lizard is small and stays that way, making it easy to house in smaller enclosures. You can put them in groups of two or three; however, the males are pretty territorial and end up fighting.
It’s also friendly toward humans and is easy to handle. Long tailed lizard is hardy, thrives well on commercially available reptile diets, and gets along well with other lizards.
Temperamentally, these lizards are calm. They will not run away if you pick them up, but they will likely run away from you if you startle them. These lizards find their food by searching the ground for insects all day long, so you may hear your pet lizard rustling around its cage as it hunts for food in the leaves and underbrush.
The long-tailed grass lizard is tolerant of handling, but it is a quick little lizard and likes to move around. It will probably not sit still for too much petting. The more you handle your lizard, the more comfortable it will be with you, and the less likely it will be to bite you.
Long-tailed grass lizards are diurnal animals, which means they are awake and active during the day and sleep at night. They prefer warmer temperatures during the day and cooler ones at night. These lizards eat mostly insects as well as some plants. Long-tailed grass lizards have a slow metabolism; they can go without food for weeks if necessary in captivity.
Long-tailed grass lizards have particular adaptations that make them unique among reptiles. They are diurnal, meaning they are active during the day and sleep at night as people do. Also, they have excellent color vision, making them the only reptiles with this ability. Therefore, it is essential to have full-spectrum UVB lighting in their enclosures; they need it to see well in captivity!
Long-tailed grass lizards are one of the quietest species of pet lizards available today and make great pets for people who live in apartments or anywhere else where noise may be an issue.
- A spacious 20 gallon vertical and hexagonal tank
- Extra 10 gallons of enclosure space for each long-tailed lizard
- A screened top that is with a tightly clamped lid.
- Various sturdy plants, branches, vines, and even cork barks provide lots of hiding spots and climbing.
When choosing a tank, consider buying a glass or acrylic enclosure with sliding screen lids specifically for reptile use. The screen lid will provide good ventilation and prevent your lizard from escaping and let enough light into the cage for plants to grow. In addition, the screen lid will also allow you to hang heat lamps to provide supplemental heat and light.
The substrate for long-tailed lizards should hold moisture well to help keep the humidity level high. Peat moss or mulch works well. Using a substrate that will not mould or become infested with mites, cypress mulch is recommended because it will absorb water without becoming mouldy and seems to have fewer problems with mites than other substrates. Also, you can use paper towels as a temporary substrate.
Remember that not only are they cold-blooded, but they are also ectothermic. That means they can’t regulate the body temperature without the aid of external heat sources. If it’s too hot, that’s bad. If it’s too cold, that’s bad. They’re going to be at their peak health when they’re within their preferred temperature range.
Since they prefer warmer climates, place half of the cage on a heat mat that maintains room temperature, so your lizard has options when it comes to regulating its body temperature. You can use heat lamps or heating pads to maintain a 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit temperature, with a basking area of about 90 degrees. Use a thermometer so that you can monitor the environment.
As they are native to tropical rainforests, they require high humidity levels. Use a misting bottle daily, or place the enclosure on a humidity tray. These lizards spend most of their time in trees and shrubs, so be sure to include plenty of plants, branches, and vines for climbing and hiding.
Many specimens also do well on a diet of fruit flies and flying insects. Other accompanying food can be mealworms and waxworms to top their diet. Crickets may also fit their diet at times, but you should avoid them if the lizard is not eating them since they may nip at their toes or tail.
Long tailed lizards have been known to not eat for a few days after moving to a new enclosure but usually start eating again within a week. Adult long tailed lizards don’t feed much like juveniles.
The Long tailed lizard’s most common water dish is a ceramic bowl, sometimes sold as a “water rock.” You can find them in pet shops, and they come in a variety of sizes. The key to using these is to ensure the reptile cannot easily tip it over. Make sure the water is clean, fresh, and non-chlorinated.
Once a week, the tank will need a thorough cleaning. If you have more than one lizard, remove all of them to a holding tank and clean the cage with a mild detergent or bleach solution. Leave no trace of soap or bleach remaining in the tank. Rinse well before putting the lizards back into the clean tank.
If you only have one lizard, you can use a small brush to scrub away any waste from deep in the substrate. If you find that this is not effective enough for removing debris, you may have to replace large portions of the substrate each week.
Lizards are very sensitive to pesticides and other chemicals, so always rinse new plants well before adding them to your lizard’s cage. Use only non-toxic plants and avoid using those containing pesticides or chemicals of any kind.
Potential Health Problems
Like any other reptile pet, the Long tailed lizards are not immune to health problems, especially the wild-caught ones. They are prone to parasitic infections and respiratory infections.
Symptoms of parasitic infections in a long tailed lizard are lack of appetite, sluggishness, and vomiting. To avoid external and internal parasites, regularly keep their environment clean and sanitize the tank.
Respiratory infections are usually diagnosed by breathing difficulties, the presence of mucus, or swelling of the mouth and nasal tissue. Improper humidity and inadequate temperatures are the primary cause of these problems. To avoid this problem, stay on top of these parameters.
Consider visiting a reptile vet to treat these medical conditions.
During the breeding season, males will display bright colors to attract females. Males also develop white patches on either side of their throat during this time and often exhibit territorial behavior by bobbing their heads in warning at other males or nearby objects. The male may even attack an object or rival lizard if he believes it to be a threat.
The Right Long-Tailed Grass Lizard for You
Be in search of a healthy Long tailed lizard bred in a controlled environment. This means you should obtain one from a reputable breeder rather than catching one. Buying a ranched pet means you will get to know its health history, which is very important when you start the long tailed lizard pet journey.
Our Long tailed lizard friends can make excellent pets, but they have several special requirements that should be met. It is very calm and tranquil, and it makes a wonderful pet for children since it hardly moves and is very easy to feed. As you’ve read, keeping a Long tailed lizard as a pet is not hard, but it does take a lot of time and willingness to care for them properly.
How do I choose a Long tailed lizard for a pet?
When selecting your pet lizard, you should ensure it has alert eyes and a thin body without any sores or cuts. It would be best if you steered clear of any lizards that have crusty eyes or runny noses, which could indicate an upper respiratory infection.
How should I care for long tailed Lizard?
You may enjoy keeping a long-tailed grass lizard as a pet because they are generally docile and even friendly toward their owners once they’ve become tame. This species is also quite hardy in captivity. Its not unusual for them to live ten years or more if well cared for; some captive specimens have reached 15 years or older!
Which species are like the Long-Tailed Lizard?
If you miss out on the long-tailed lizards, you can always check out the profile of the Green Anole, Black-Throated monitor, or even the Nile monitor species.
The size of the long-tailed grass lizard makes it a good pet for children who would like a pet reptile. They might get nervous if small children handle them, so they are better suited for older kids who can understand how to manage them properly.