• Lacerta Bilineata

Western Green Lizard (Lacerta Bilineata): Daily Routine

The Lacerta bilineata in the photo gallery below is one of three adult males that currently seem to rule "my" little western green lizard kingdom. It's by far the most active individual (he is easily recognizable due to a stunted, not quite re-grown tail); in May 2021 I would find him every day patrolling along the borders of his considerable territory, covering pretty long distances in the process (the territory in question is centered around a young oak tree mostly overgrown by a thick carpet of shrub which mainly consists of fly honeysuckle where most of the western greens spend their day; overall the territory includes my garden, parts of the narrow road below it and a stretch of a the horse pasture that starts right where the oak tree grows; overall the area where I observed this particular lizard population measures several hundred square meters).


Luckily for me, my reptilian neighbor adhered to a pretty regular "schedule", so after a couple of days I was able to predict where he would show up and when - and I must compliment him for being a very disciplined lizard: As long as the weather was reasonably warm and the sun was out, he always showed up on time :-) As soon as he would spot me - which was unavoidable - our little ritual would commence.


I would observe him, motionless, he would observe me (equally motionless), and only once he felt sure I wasn't a direct threat - which initially took up to 20 minutes and later around 5 minutes - he would continue to go about his lizard activities and inspect the neighborhood (though never without leaving my out his sight). But in between exploring his little kingdom I could always count on him returning to the fly honeysuckle bush, because a little heap of cut dry grass right next to the shrub made for such a perfect sun-basking spot that it proved just irresistible.


This spot - which was also very popular with another male and one female - is where I was able to shoot the photos you see below (and many in the other galleries in this blog).