Exploration professionals have uncovered a unique types of lizards in the desert that stays in family members groups and also shows social, behavior patterns generally found in mammals and also birds.

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The desert night lizard (Xantusia vigilis) is a grey, yellow-brownish, or olive-colored lizard. The snout come vent is 1.5-2.75 in (3.8-7.0 cm). They spend most of your life hiding in secrecy under collapse vegetation and also litter the trees. For example, in joshua, logs, jaw bark, dead yucca clumps, Mojave yucca, banana yucca, and also under the rocks.

When frightened, it narrowly escapes and also hides away in the nearest undercover spot. Sometimes, when escaping from predators, it division off its tail. The tail proceeds to shake together the lizard flees.

Want come know much more about west reptiles and also amphibians? right here are some fascinating facts around the desert night lizard (Xantusia vigilis). Also, review these amazing facts about mole snake and frilled lizard.

Desert Night Lizard truth File

What do they prey on?

Small insects, spiders, termites, various other arthropods

What carry out they eat?


Average litter size?


How lot do castle weigh?

Not mentioned

How lengthy are they?

1.5-2.75 in (3.8-7.0 cm)

How tall space they?


What execute they look like?

Grey, yellow-brownish, olive

Skin Type

Dry scales

What are their main threats?

Snakes, Hawks, big Lizards, Other big Birds

What is their conservation status?

Least issue

Where you'll uncover them

Arid Regions, Semi-arid Regions


Southern California, Baja California, southerly Nevada, mountain Gabriel Mountains, western Arizona, east Sierras, Southwestern Utah





Scientific Name

Xantusia vigilis





Desert Night Lizard interesting Facts

What kind of pet is a desert night lizard?

Although the name argues night lizards space night creatures, they are diurnal and also crepuscular, which means they are active during the day, too. Desert night lizards (Xantusia vigilis) space nocturnal throughout the summer season and diurnal throughout the winter months. The desert night lizard varieties can adjust their shade from irradiate olive to dark brown throughout the day.

The desert night lizard varieties are great climbers. Their diet comprises tiny insects, spiders, termites, and also other arthropods. You deserve to learn more about the life history of reptiles and amphibians in the ar guide of Arizona.

What course of animal does a desert night lizard belong to?

Desert night lizards room reptiles. Castle belong come the course Reptilia and also family Xantusiidae.

How many desert night lizard are there in the world?

The exact variety of desert night lizards is unknown. However, there space 26 species of night lizards.

Where walk a desert night lizard live?

The desert night lizard (Xantusia vigilis) resides in the desert. They choose arid and also semi-arid habitat regions. The desert night lizard subspecies is aboriginal to southern California, Baja California, mountain Gabriel Mountains, mountain Clemente Island, southerly Nevada, southwestern Utah, eastern Sierras, western Arizona, and northwestern Mexico. However, they"ve prolonged its habitat variety in almost all parts of the arid areas of the USA.

What is a desert night lizard"s habitat?

The desert night lizard (Xantusia vigilis) prefers arid and also semi-arid habitat regions. During the day, castle hide close to rocks and also rock crevices, under the fallen leaves and also branches that yucca such as Joshua tree, Spanish Bayonet, and also Spanish Dagger. Its range extends from southern California into southern Nevada, Arizona, and also southwestern Utah.

You can read much more about reptiles and also amphibians in the California Natural background field guide.

Who perform desert night lizard live with?

The desert night lizard resides in bag or v family.

How lengthy does a desert night lizard live?

The (Xantusia vigilis) desert night lizard subspecies has actually a expectation of roughly 20 years.

How execute they reproduce?

The reproduction procedure of the desert night lizard, choose all other night lizards, is viviparous, which means they offer birth to one to 3 young persons from respectable to December.

An inexplicable characteristic the the desert night lizard (Xantusia vigilis) is that they form family social groups making up a father, mother, and offspring. Even though the young can feed themselves, lock are in addition to their family, and also young ones do not receive any care from your parents. The benefit of remaining with their parents is unknown.

The young lizards deserve to camouflage well, and their dimension is comparable to the of a toothpick.

What is your conservation status?

The conservation standing of desert night lizard is least Concern.

Desert Night lizard fun Facts

What carry out desert night lizard watch like?


From snout to vent, the dimension of a desert night lizard is 1.5-2.75 in (3.8-7.0 cm) and also has a tail of the exact same length. The reminder from snout to vent is fairly long. The Desert night lizard (Xantusiidae vigilis) reptiles are tiny and thin lizards through a gular fold. It has soft skin through granular scales, and the head is covered with big plates. The eyes do not have lids, and their pupils room vertical in shape. They have about 30-50 dorsal scales in lengthwise rows in the center of their body.

Desert night lizard reptiles space olive, grey, or yellow-brownish v light brown and dark clues or narrow stripes. A small beige line, edged in dark brown or black, starts indigenous the eye it rotates the shoulder. The underpart is white, consisting of of big square scales with twelve rows.

How cute are they?

No, desert night lizards are not cute to most people, although that is subjective. This subspecies face has a snake-like appearance.

How carry out they communicate?

Desert night lizards reptiles use different modes of communication like vocal, visual, tactile, and chemical.

In intuitive communication, lizards try to gather info by observing various other lizards" physical and behavioral characteristics. In chemical communication, lizards develop chemicals choose pheromones. Finally, in tactile communication, lizards connect directly and indirectly.

How big is a desert night lizard?

The desert night lizard is approximately 1.5-2.75 in (3.8-7.0 cm) size from snout to vent.

The desert night lizard is two times bigger 보다 the Virgin islands dwarf sphaero.

How fast can a desert night lizard swim?

The exact speed the the desert night lizard ~ above the water is no mentioned. However, the typical basilisk lizard runs on water choose amphibians at an average speed that 15 mph (24.1 kph).

How lot does a desert night lizard weigh?

The weight of the Desert night lizard is no mentioned. However, the smallest lizard Virgin archipelago dwarf sphaero weighs approximately 0.0053 oz (90.15 g).

What space their male and female surname of the species?

Female species are known as mrs desert night lizards, and also male species are known as masculine desert night lizards.

What would you speak to a baby desert night lizard ?

A baby desert night lizard is recognized as a juvenile.

What carry out they eat?

The diet of night lizard (Xantusiidae vigilis) species consists the termites, small insects, beetles, crickets, caterpillars, and spiders.

Are castle poisonous?

Night lizards are not poisonous. Therefore, this varieties is no harmful come humans.

Would they make a an excellent pet?

Yes, the desert night lizard would certainly make a an excellent pet. Countless people"s an initial pet reptile is a lizard. Ensure you provide them with a lizard cage that has rocks and rock crevices since they space secretive animals.

Did friend know...

A distinct fact around the desert night lizard is that they can break off your tail come escape an enemy. The exit tail shakes for around four minutes favor a living creature. This feature helps them come distract your predators. The predator is found holding its tail if the lizard to escape away, conserving its life. This process of dropping the tail is well-known as autotomy.

Losing that tail does not reason much harm. Although it can suffer from the stress and anxiety of strike by its predators, they additionally lose the fatty energy deposited in the tail and also have challenges finding a mate as result of the unhealthy appearance throughout the mating season.

Though the reduce tail grows back, it is not as perfect together the initial one.

What space the lizards that come out at night?

Yes, some desert lizard reptiles space nocturnal. Leopard geckos room medium-sized geckos. They are native to western India, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.

Tokay geckos (Gekko gecko) are the largest gecko species. Lock belong come the family members Gekkonidae. Lock are native and variety from southerly to southeast Asia.

Desert night lizards likewise come the end at night during summer. Their selection extends throughout the southwestern unified States, Arizona, Nevada, and also northwestern Mexico.

Prehensile-tailed skinks, also known together the monkey-tailed lizard, are an additional night lizards. They selection from the Solomon Islands and Papua new Guinea to northeast Australia in the Pacific Ocean.

Where carry out lizards sleep?

Most lizards room diurnal, castle are energetic during the day, and also at night they room inactive. For this reason yes, some lizards are active during the night.

While picking a ar to sleep, lizards have to avoid exposing themselves to potential predators. Therefore, you will certainly often find them sleeping in secretive places.

In the house, they frequently hide in dark places. You will discover the lizards resting on leaves or under the debris of trees of collapse leaves and branches the Yucca, Joshua tree, and also Utah agave when outside. They sleep with their head in the direction of the open route to watch the end for predators.

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