Bearded Dragon - Mug Shot

Neil Ross

Brisbane, Australia

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Artist's Description

Photos taken with Canon IXUS 80 IS and edited with Lightzone. SIMPLICITY is my niche!
My backyard in Brisbane QLD Australia

Early one morning I met this lovely fellow on my back lawn. At first I thought it was a large piece of bark… until it raised its head and looked up at me. Prior to this I had never seen a Bearded Dragon up so close, so I managed to grab my camera and take a few quick shots. The closer I got the more his throat puffed up and the pointed spines around his neck extended dramatically… and the more my heart pounded!!! After a while he became bored with my intrusions and made a hasty retreat. I feel very privileged to have observed this beautiful animal in such close proximity. The following information has been sourced from a couple of websites dedicated to these amazing reptiles.

Bearded Dragon is the common name for any agamid lizard in the genus Pogona. Bearded Dragons are popular exotic pets in many places, notably the Inland Bearded Dragon.
They have broad triangular heads and flattened bodies, with adults reaching approximately 50 cm (19.5 inches) head-to-tail. Males are slightly longer than females, but females are slightly heavier. They owe their name to a distinctive series of lateral spines (specialized scales) radiating horizontally from the head and base of the tail. They are mostly terrestrial, but climb to bask and search for prey. They inhabit mostly open woodlands, scrub, and desert.

All species are native to Australia, but have been exported worldwide, and due to their convenient size, hardiness, and omnivorous diet, are popular reptile pets. They are one of the most popular pet lizards in the United States.

Bearded dragons also shed their skin because they grow continuously throughout their lives. However, their skin does not grow with them so to accommodate this increase of size, every reptile must shed its scaly skin periodically. This process is known as ecdysis. When the time to shed draws near, a layer of water will form underneath the outer layer of the scales. This layer works to loosen the old skin and separates it slightly from the new layer underneath.

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