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Gippsland Water Dragon – Relative to the Eastern Water Dragon which is distinguishable by the black band running from its eye to ear. The Gippsland Water Dragon does not have this band. The Cann River locals call him a Çocky John’ so its stuck :) He chased me up the Thurra River Bank when I was going fishing for bream. Seems like he wanted the prawn when I offered it but preferred to eat the dandelion flower nearby! Taken at Thurra River – Croajingolong National Park. Gods Country..I wanna be back there. Editing by Neil Swenser. Thanks Neil :)
Description
The Gippsland Water Dragon is a large lizard. It is grey-green and brown with black banding on back and a row of spines from the crest of the head to the tail. The chest is olive green. Males often have patches or stripes of orange, blue and yellow on chest. It is a good swimmer and dives into the water when disturbed. It can remain submerged for around half an hour.

Size
Total length up to 80 cm including tail. Head and body length 20-25cm.

Habitat
Near creeks, river and lakes in forests, woodlands, grasslands and also parkland in urban areas. Usually seen on rocks logs or overhanging branches.

Food
insects, molluscs and crustaceans as well as small vertebrates including fish, hatchling tortoises and small mammals. Also eats fruit and berries.

Breeding
Clutches of 6-18 eggs are laid in burrows. The female digs a shallow nest about 10-15cm deep in a sunny open position in a sandy soil. The female lies above the burrow and deposits the eggs into the chamber below. She then back-fills the burrow by scraping the soil with her back legs and then packing it down with her snout. Loose debris is then scattered over the nest area.

Range
eastern Victoria and far south-eastern NSW

Notes
The Gippsland Water Dragon and Eastern Water Dragon are sub-species of the same species. The Eastern Water Dragon (Physignathus lesueurii lesueurii) has a dark stripe from ear to eye, that the Gippsland Water Dragon (Physignathus lesueurii howittii) lacks. The Eastern Water Dragon male has a red flush on its chest and darker bands. The Gippsland Water Dragon male has an olive-grey chest, with patches or stripes of orange, blue and yellow.

Classification
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata (Sauria)
Family: Agamidae
Genus: Physignathus
Species: lesueurii howittii
Common Name: Gippsland Water Dragon

Relatives in same Genus
Eastern Water Dragon (P. lesueurii lesueurii)

Ozanimals.com Source of information

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Comments

  • dougie1page2
    dougie1page2almost 5 years ago

    good one sal, what a poser!

  • Thanks Dougie …he was that indeed. Very obliging!

    – salsbells69

  • GerryMac
    GerryMacalmost 5 years ago

    excellent detail Sal! don’t want to get too close!

  • barnsis
    barnsisalmost 5 years ago

    Great title, fits the attitude Excellent.

  • Thanks Byron! :))

    – salsbells69

  • Greta  McLaughlin
    Greta McLaughlinalmost 5 years ago

    Great capture!

  • Thanks Greta!

    – salsbells69

  • WhiteDove Studio kj gordon
    WhiteDove Stud...almost 5 years ago

    prehistoric.careful wahini…………….

  • Thanks Kj! Prehistoric yes..he was gorgeous! And a great poser. Harmless little fellas. Probabably only a foot and a half long :))

    – salsbells69

  • Tainia Finlay
    Tainia Finlayalmost 5 years ago

    I expected to see a parrot from the title LOL! Love his expression, great image :)

  • Thankyou Tainia! :))

    – salsbells69

  • Elaine  Manley
    Elaine Manleyalmost 5 years ago

    hehe too cute!

  • Thankyou Lu! Love the new avatar by the way..its gorgeous!

    – salsbells69

  • Richard Shakenovsky
    Richard Shaken...almost 5 years ago

    Like the detail in the head and eye. You may wish to consider cropping and getting rid of the green line cutting across the back. Well done.

  • Hi Richard. Thought about it and am probably going to have a crack at doing that. Even though, I like the natural setting he was found in. And was probably just relying on the eye contact and head detail to make the shot. Thanks for the critique. Really appreciated. :D

    – salsbells69

  • Neil Swenser
    Neil Swenseralmost 5 years ago

    Looks super Sal, great job on the cropping.

  • Thanks FB. Really appreciate it :))

    – salsbells69

  • jimmy hoffman
    jimmy hoffmanover 4 years ago

    Beautiful light and details!

  • Thankyou very much Jim :))

    – salsbells69

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