Lizard City

Podarcis siculaDid you know that there are lizards living in New York City? Podarcis siculaNo, I don’t mean captive ones. As their name suggests, these Italian Wall Lizards (Podarcis sicula) originated elsewhere but seem to have adopted to our climate and habitat (NYC and Naples are on the same latitude, you know). Last week, when the temp got up to 70, several were sunning themselves in the NYBG Native Garden.Podarcis siculaThese were introduced on Long Island in the late 1960s. They’ve spread out. I’ve seen them in Queens’ cemetery belt, too. The Northern Fence Lizard was also introduced, on Staten Island, but I’ve never seen one. There are, however, native lizards living in the Hudson Highlands.img_1091There are at least four lizards visible here as this bold-as-brass feral cat wanders by.

2 Responses to “Lizard City”


  1. 1 crystalhrogers November 7, 2016 at 7:09 am

    This cat will dispatch as many as it can. I think the quickness of the lizards makes them attractive hunting/playing game. In summer our cats would get very skinny and Mother said it was from eating lizards. We would feed them yeast tablets, which they quickly learned to love, and they soon fattened up again.

    On Mon, Nov 7, 2016 at 6:02 AM, Backyard and Beyond wrote:

    > mthew posted: “Did you know that there are lizards living in New York > City? No, I don’t mean captive ones. As their name suggests, these Italian > Wall Lizards (Podarcis sicula) originated elsewhere but seem to have > adopted to our climate and habitat (NYC and Naples are o” >

  2. 2 Dawn November 7, 2016 at 10:15 pm

    You can usually find lizards in the driest flowerbeds in Queens Botanical Garden, especially the gravelly lavender bed near the main building.


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