Range Tracking

Curlytail Invader

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The Northern Curlytail Lizard (Leiocephalus carinatus armouri) is an invasive species in Florida introduced as a way to control pests in sugar cane fields in the 1940s. Now this resident of the Caribbean has made itself at home along Florida’s East Coast running from Brevard County southward with varying degrees of success. From personal experience, Martin County southward has tremendous hordes of them in localized areas. This lone individual was found near the Cocoa Beach Public Library during the past week where it was happily eating insects in the surrounding grass. The expanding range of these lizards is thought in large part to be due to them catching rides in cars and trucks, especially lawn care vehicles.
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The Curlytail Lizard can grow quite large, up to 11 to 12 inches long, giving it an advantage over the smaller Anoles, which the Curlytail Lizard has been known to feed on. Because the Lizard blends in so well with the background, the background has been screened back to allow the Lizard to stand out in this photo and the one above.
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A view of where the Lizard was photographed is circled in red. The walkway connects a shopping center with the Cocoa Beach Public Library, which is the building visible at upper right.

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