San Esteban Island Chuckwalla 
San Esteban Island Chuckwalla
San Esteban Island Chuckwalla
Scientific Name:
Sauromalus varius
Status/Date Listed as Endangered:
EN-US FWS: March 20, 1980
Area(s) Where Listed As Endangered:

The San Esteban chuckwalla is only found on the Islands of San Esteban, Lobos, and Pelicanos in the Gulf of California. They are large, plump lizards that reach about two feet in length as adults, and they have loose folds of skin around their neck and shoulders and thick blunt tails. Their skin is gray with tan to yellow patches over their entire bodies, and their faces are gray to black. Females are duller in appearance with less patches. Their colorations provide almost perfect camouflage against some of their predators.

Chuckwallas prefer deserts with open flats and rocky areas for their habitat. The areas typically contain creosote bush and other drought-tolerated scrub. They are active only in the day and spend much of the morning basking in the sun. They feed on leaves, fruit and flowers of plants, and insects. They are not harmful to humans and are known to run from potential threats into tight rock crevices where they inflate their bodies to become entrenched. Males are territorial and have glands under their legs that they use to mark their scent. Mating occurs from April to July, and females lay 5 to 16 eggs between June and August. The eggs hatch in late September. These lizards are known to live over 25 years.

This species is threatened because of its rarity and slow reproduction rate, and because it closely resembles the poisonous gila monster species, and as a result, some are killed mistakenly by humans. Other threats to the species include habitat disturbance and capture for the pet trade. This species was listed as endangered on March 20, 1989, and there are no other known conservation measures being taken to preserve the species.

Wikipedia Article

This article is only an excerpt. If it appears incomplete or if you wish to see article references, visit the rest of its contents here.
Wikipedia Article
Copyright Notice: This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "San Esteban chuckwalla".

Featured Article

Eight Creatures Declared Extinct But May Still be Out There
The Tasmanian devil is endemic to Australia. Although this species is called tiger (named for its stripes) and wolf (due to its canid-like appearance), it is not a member of the cat or wolf family. It is a member of the marsupial family. Other members of this family include kangaroos and koala bears.

The last known Tasmanian tiger died in a zoo in Hobart, Tasmania in 1936, but there have been hundreds of unconfirmed sightings, and a reserve has been set up in Southwestern Tasmania in the hopes that possible surviving individuals can have adequate habitat.


Endangered Species of Our Planet

We're on Instagram

Donate, Adopt, Get Involved

EEC Conservation Directory

Mailing List

Would you like to receive a notice and link when the new Creature Feature is posted?

Enter your e-mail address below:

HTML   Text-only

Fun & Games

Are you inspired by endangered animals? Check out our games and coloring pages! More to come soon.
color endangered creatures
play hangman