Zootoca is a monotypical genus with its only representative being Zootoca vivipara: A stunning species, as it is the only Lacertid which usually does not lay eggs but gives birth to fully developed young. Doing so, it is tolerant to cold temperatures and therefore inhabits regions which are unsuitable for other lizards.
In consequence, the Viviparous Lizard was able to populate a huge area in northern Eurasia from northern Spain in the west to Japan in the east - it occurs even north of the Arctic Circle. In terms of geographical distribution, it is maybe the most successful living reptile. So watch out at your next walk in the forest: these inconspicuous brownish lizards are real evolutionary stars!
Besides of the viviparous nominate subspecies, two oviparous subspecies have been described:
Zootoca vivipara may be confused with the following species: