Lacerta schreiberi - Schreiber's Green Lizard

Lacerta schreiberi
Male: E / Lago de Sanabria (Zamora), 19.09.2017 - Note the green back and the brownish tail.

Compared to the other European members of the genus Lacerta, which inhabit a wide distribution range, Schreiber's Green Lizard is limited to Western Spain and Portugal. Once again, the Iberian Peninsula proofs as a rich source of endemism.

Lacerta schreiberi is an adorable lizard with males showing blue heads in spring, yellow-greenish bodies and contrasting brown tails. Unlike many other species, also females may show beautiful green colours with a quite variable pattern of dark spots.

 

It inhabits well-vegetated habitats with sufficient humidity. In particular in the south of its range, it can be found frequently close to water.

 

Males of this species resemble to Lacerta bilineata, which also occurs in northern Spain. Anyhow, males of Lacerta schreiberi have brown tales whereas males of Lacerta bilineata have green tales.

Timon lepidus has blue ocelli and doesn't show blue heads.

 

Juveniles of Lacerta schreiberi can be easily identified by their characteristic lateral stripe pattern (see below).

Lacerta schreiberi
Distribution area of Lacerta schreiberi.

Lacerta schreiberi
Pair: P / Algarve, 16.04.2017 - Specimen with yellowish coloration.
Lacerta schreiberi
Male: P / Algarve, 16.04.2017 - These lizards can be frequently encountered basking in spiny blackberry scrubs.
Lacerta schreiberi
Male: P / Serra da Estrela, 17.07.2013 - In summer, the blue head colouration gets pale.
Lacerta schreiberi
Female: P / Serra da Estrela, 16.07.2013 - Older females may be bright green with black blotches.
Lacerta schreiberi
Subadult: E / Montes de León, 05.09.2019 - subadult specimen frequently show brownish colours.
Lacerta schreiberi
Juvenile: E / Truchas (León), 04.09.2011 - Juveniles can be identified by the light stripes crossing the flanks.
Lacerta schreiberi
Glacial trough valley in the Serra da Estrela (Portugal): Habitat of Lacerta schreiberi and Podarcis carbonelli.