Also known as Butterfly lizard, Butterfly Runner or Smooth-scaled agama. Several subspecies are known

A Butterfly Agama
Southeast Asia
Scientific Background
Type Agamid Lizard
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Chordate
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Species {{{Species}}}
Description Southeast Asian Agamid
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Caré Sheet Informátion
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. Leiolepis is the only other genus in the Uromastyx family and were originally placed in that genus. From Vietnam, Burma, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Indonesia where they are found in relatively dry, open scrub brush habitats. They are terrestrial and will often dig deep underground burrows to live in but also climb trees occasionally. These lizards are usually quite shy and nervous at first but soon calm down under the proper conditions. Some may become fairly tame but will always remain flighty, preferring not to be held and quickly running off on their hind legs if they can get away. It has been reported that in the wild they are communal, living in large colonies. Territorial aggression does not seem to be a problem in captivity but sometimes one will block the other ones access to food. This is more of a problem if only 2 lizards are kept together and separate feeding dishes will be needed. Better results seem to be had with 2 or more pairs being housed together. It is believed that this species is monogamous, pairing up for life. The body is slightly flattened with small, granular scales and a somewhat round head. The tail is long, up to 2/3rds of the total length and does not break off naturally. Adult size is 18 to 20". They have a gray to olive green back, red to yellow sides with black stripes. This is only the basic color, as they are variable having other colors and/or patterns may be present, especially with males.

Temperature Edit

Daytime 85 to 90°F with a nighttime drop no lower than the mid 70s°F. A hot basking spot is needed at around 95 to 100°F. Provide a warm and a cool side in the enclosure so that they can choose a comfortable temperature at any given time.

Humidity Edit

Normally low, less than 50%, with higher humidity and misting to simulate the rainy season.

Light Edit

UV light must be provided (10.0 fluorescent) along with a basking light. Use a timer to provide a 12-hour day cycle.

Feeding Edit

Primarily insectivores but fruits, vegetables and flowers should also be offered. Crickets, mealworms and a variety of other insects are fine as the primary diet. Dead insects may also be consumed.

25% of the diet should be plant matter, but some individuals will refuse to eat any. Fresh mixed veggies with Romaine lettuce, kale, collard and mustard greens (finely chopped) may all be accepted. Favorite veggies are dandelion leaves/flowers and zucchini. As a treat, fruits and berries are generally relished but too much can cause loose stools.

A good vitamin/mineral supplement should be given once or twice a week for adults and more often for young, growing lizards.

Clean water should be available at all times. They prefer to lick up water drops but running water may also stimulate them to drink. A simple water dish may be adequate, especially if an air stone is bubbling in it. Otherwise, mist the tank in one area occasionally.

Habitat Edit

A 20-gallon long tank with a screen lid is adequate for a pair, a larger tank would be better. Floor space is more important than height. It is best to cover the back and sides to keep them from running into the glass. Set it up as a desert/savanna style habitat with a deep substrate of potting soil or coco-fiber mixed with sand for burrow construction. Keep the lower part somewhat moist but not wet or soggy. Décor, caves and other hiding places should be provided but be careful to place heavy objects in a way that will prevent tunneling cave-in accidents.

Sexing Edit

Males have more prominent femoral pores on the underside of the thighs and small hemipenal bulges at the base of the tail. They are also more colorful than females.

Breeding Edit

Butterfly agamas may be monogamous with pairs staying together for life. It is unknown if they will choose another mate if separated from the original one through death or capture for the pet trade.

If you do have a mated pair, courtship begins with the male bobbing his head. If the female is receptive, he will bite and hold her by the neck as he mounts her.

When she begins to look a bit heavier than usual, provide a good-sized nest box with slightly moist substrate to lay the eggs in.

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