General care for Lacerta's (Timon lepidus and similar species). Additional research may apply
Intro to Lacertas
Lacertas are a diverse group of reptiles belonging to the Lacertidae family. They are found in various parts of Europe, Asia, and North Africa. In the wild, Lacerta lizards inhabit a range of habitats, including forests, meadows, rocky areas, and even urban environments. These agile and quick-moving lizards are known for their vibrant colors and remarkable ability to climb and bask on walls, trees, and rocks. When it comes to keeping a Lacerta lizard as a pet, providing proper care is essential for their health and well-being. Here are some guidelines to help you create an optimal environment and meet their specific needs.
They are active lizards. Set up a spacious enclosure for your Lacerta. A 36x18x36 or 40 gallon tank is suitable for a single adult lizard, if you can provide a large enclosure for your Lacerta they will greatly benefit from the extra space provided! Use a substrate that retains moisture, such as a mixture of cypress mulch or coco husk chip. This substrate helps maintain humidity levels and allows for burrowing. Provide hiding spots, branches, rocks, and foliage to create a stimulating environment. These lizards enjoy climbing and basking, so provide sturdy branches and elevated perches. Lacerta lizards require a temperature gradient within the enclosure. Provide a basking spot with a temperature range of 90-95°F and a cooler side around 75-80°F. You can use a combination of heat lamps and under-tank heating pads hooked to a thermostat to achieve the desired temperature. Additionally, provide a full-spectrum UVB light source for 10-12 hours a day to meet their lighting requirements. The UVB light aids in their calcium metabolism and overall health. Lacerta lizards thrive in moderate humidity levels of 50-60%. Mist the enclosure regularly to maintain humidity, and provide a shallow water dish for drinking and soaking. Fresh water should be available at all times. Misting the enclosure once or twice a day, depending on the humidity requirements of your particular Lacerta species, will help meet their hydration needs. Monitor temperature with a temperature gauge and monitor humidity with a hydrometer.
Lacerta lizards are omnivores primarily eating insects but will eat fruits and plants if the opportunity presents itself. Feed them a varied diet consisting of appropriately-sized live insects such as crickets, superworms, hornworms, and small roaches with the occasional fruit. Offer gut-loaded insects for optimal nutrition. Dust the insects with a calcium/vitamin powder like Repashy Calcium plus. Lacertas are fast and skittish, so it's important to approach them calmly and confidently. Use both hands to support their body while handling, avoiding sudden movements or gripping too tightly. Gradually increase handling time as your lizard becomes more accustomed to you. Remember to wash your hands before and after handling. Proper care and attention to the specific needs of Lacerta lizards are crucial for their overall well-being. Always research and understand the requirements of your particular Lacerta species, as care needs may vary slightly between different subspecies. With the right environment, nutrition, and handling, your Lacerta lizard can thrive and provide you with many years of enjoyment as a reptile companion.
Lacertas For Sale in the Pet Trade
Captive Bred Lacertas are seasonally available in the spring and summer. Most common morph available is the Melanistic Jeweled Lacerta. Classic Jeweled Lacerta and Melanistic Lacertas can be found at reptile specialty stores, reptile expos, or online stores.