Chinese crocodile lizard Facts

Chinese crocodile lizard Facts
Chinese crocodile lizard is a species of lizard that inhabits South China and northwestern parts of Vietnam. It can be found in the ponds, shallow pools and slow-flowing streams in evergreen and bamboo forests. Number of Chinese crocodile lizard in the wild is dropping due to accelerated habitat loss and over-collecting from the wild (due to pet trade and usage of body parts in traditional Chinese medicine). There are no more than 2 or 3 thousand Chinese crocodile lizards left in the wild. This species is listed as endangered.
Interesting Chinese crocodile lizard Facts:
Chinese crocodile lizard can reach 16 to 18 inches in length and up to 10 ounces of weight. Males are larger than females.
Chinese crocodile lizard has grey-brownish backs and creamy-yellow belly. Throat and lateral sides of male's body are covered with orange-red markings that become especially prominent during the breeding season. Young lizards are brown, with creamy-colored snout and forehead.
Chinese crocodile lizard has two rows of bony, enlarged scales with sharp ridges on the tail. Similar feature can be seen in crocodiles, hence the name "crocodile lizard".
Chinese crocodile lizard is semi-aquatic animal (it spends part of its life in the water). It has strong, muscular tail that facilitates swimming. Chinese crocodile lizard can spend half an hour under the water before it returns to the surface of water to breathe.
Chinese crocodile lizard is diurnal animal, active in the morning and at the end of a day.
Chinese crocodile lizard is a carnivore (meat-eater). Its diet is based on dragonflies, insects and their larvae, worms, tadpoles and snails.
Chinese crocodile lizard lives in the ponds and shallow pools with overhanging vines and tree branches that provide shade. From time to time, it undergoes "metabolic pause" and becomes completely motionless. This can last for hours. During this phase, Chinese crocodile lizard slows down metabolism to preserve energy and it does not respond to external stimuli.
Chinese crocodile lizard is also known as "lizard of great sleepiness" because of the frequent "metabolic pauses".
Main predators of Chinese crocodile lizard are raptors and humans.
Chinese crocodile lizard is solitary creature that usually lives in its own pool or hole in the water.
Chinese crocodile lizards gather in groups just before hibernation. These lizards hibernate in the crevices of rocks or in the tree holes when temperature of water drops to 15.5 degrees of Celsius (from November to March).
Mating season of Chinese crocodile lizard lasts from July to August.
Chinese crocodile lizard is viviparous, which means that female gives birth to live babies. Pregnancy lasts 8 months and ends with 2 to 12 babies.
Young Chinese crocodile lizards are very active, able to swim and find food from the moment of birth (Chinese crocodile lizards do not show parental care).
Chinese crocodile lizard can survive up to 10 years in the captivity.

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