These Common Lizards have been spotted today, living up to their name, the common lizard is the UK’s most common and widespread reptile.
The common lizard is found across many habitats, including heathland, moorland, woodland and grassland, where it can be seen basking in sunny spots. Also known as the ‘viviparous lizard’, the common lizard is unusual among reptiles as it incubates its eggs inside its body and ‘gives birth’ to live young rather than laying eggs. Adults emerge from hibernation in spring, mating in April and May, and producing three to eleven young in July.
The common lizard is variable in colour, but is usually brownish-grey, often with rows of darker spots or stripes down the back and sides. Males have bright yellow or orange undersides with spots, while females have paler, plain bellies.
If threatened by a predator, the common lizard will shed its still-moving tail in order to distract its attacker and make a quick getaway. This leaves a scar behind, but it can regrow its tail, although it is usually shorter than the original.