Status: Least Concern
Description: The tropical spiny agama is a small ground-dwelling agama, it reaches a length of 22 cm and is coloured grey, brown, or red with pale crossbars along the vertebral pale stripe. Displaying males' heads are coloured green or blue.
The tropical spiny agama is a small ground-dwelling agama mostly found in the Savannah.
Length: up to 22 cm
Ecology and Behaviour
The tropical spiny agama are very dominant and aggresive. Males usually fight with other males. With agamas, their dominance in the group is determined through fights. A dominant male is brightly colored and this male enjoys the privileges of mating with females and also gets the best place to rest.
The tropical spiny agama are omnivores but mostly insectivorous. Their diet consists of ants, millipedes, caterpillars, grasshoppers and beetles. Prey diversity and volumes fluctuate seasonally.
The tropical spiny agama reproduces seasonally. Testicular volume of males reaches a maximum during August to September (austral spring), and follicles of females become enlarged during August to December. Females lay a single clutch per year, 5 - 14 oval soft-shelled eggs on average in a hole dug in moist soil. Larger females produce larger clutches than smaller females. These hatch after 90 days.
It is categorized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as a, " Least Concern ". They are wide-spread in southern Africa and their population remains stable.
Distribution and Habitat
The tropical spiny agama is a ground loving agama mostly found in subsaharan Africa. The species is found in South Africa, Mozambique, Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Eswatini, Democratic Republic of the Congo, southwestern Kenya, and central Tanzania.
Interaction with humans
Agama lizards are persecuted in some areas due to a belief that they are harmful when infact they are not even though they do bite when confronted. It is believed that they are used by traditional doctors to make covert love potions.
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