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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless otherwise credited.
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Orange-ringed Anglehead Lizard

Family : Agamidae
Species : Gonocephalus liogaster
Size (snout to vent) : males up to 14.5 cm, females up to 12 cm.
Size (total length) : up to ~ 45 cm

This species of anglehead lizard (also known as 'Blue-eyed Anglehead Lizard') is known from lowland primary forest (up to 400 metres elevation) and peat swamp forest. Like other species of Gonocephalus it appears to be encountered more frequently near forest streams. It is diurnal in habits, and is known to feed on various insects.

This lizard exhibits striking colours and patterns. Males typically have bold, brown and green patterning on the upper flanks and along the back, while females tend to be more dark grey and greenish, however there is great variation in colour based on age and sex.

Males can be easily identified by examination of the iris, which is bright blue: females have a brown iris. Surrounding the eye is an orange (or yellowish-orange) eye ring which is boldly coloured in males, but less boldly coloured in females.

The nuchal (=neck) crest and vertebral crest are continuous, and are much more pronounced in adult males.

This striking lizard occurs in Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo (including the Natuna Islands, which lie between Peninsular Malaysia and Borneo) and Sumatra.

Figs 1 and 2 : Based on (i) the low nuchal (= neck) crest, which is continuous with a low vertebral crest, and (ii) the bright blue eye with a yellowish-orange eye ring, this specimen is identified as a juvenile or sub-adult male (estimated snout-vent length is 15 cm). It was found resting at night near a forest stream at Gunung Gading, Sarawak, Borneo.  Photos thanks to Serin Subaraj.

References : H5, H11


Fig 1
ゥ Serin Subaraj
Fig 2  
ゥ Serin Subaraj