Black ink sketch and W&N watercolour wash in Moleskine Nature journal
“So you see! There’s no end to the things you might know,
Depending how far beyond Zebra you go.”
- Dr. Seuss
I have a couple of Lizards living in my bathroom court-yard garden (Tarlton, Gauteng, South Africa) and I often find them sunning themselves on the walls or the rocks and tree stumps. These cold-blooded reptiles eat insects such as ants, beetles, larvae and flies, so the ones we get around the house or game lodges are actually very welcome!
Being cold-blooded means that they don’t have a control mechanism keeping their body temperature constant irrespective of their surroundings. They need the sun to warm their blood and provide them with energy to move and will remain mostly inactive on cold days and may hibernate in winter. There are no poisonous Lizards in southern Africa and South Africa is home to more than 200 lizard species, making it the richest country for lizard diversity in continental Africa.
This African Striped Skink gives birth to live young, but other reptiles lay eggs. The lifespan of lizards is between 1 – 3 years.
Googling lizards is a nightmare – I didn’t know they would be so difficult to identify and at first I thought it was a Common lizard, as indicated on the sketch, but I’ve since identified it is an African Striped Skink. And I didn’t know they would be so difficult to sketch either! Never again will I say, “How difficult can this be?!” lol!
2nd February 2012 – FEATURED in “Sketching and Drawings”