This is Wedge our Chuckwalla. Wedge is captive-born and came to Turtle Bay as a baby in 2009.
Chuckwallas are found in the deserts of southeastern California, southern Nevada, southwestern Utah, western Arizona, eastern Baja California, and northwestern Mexico.
A few fun facts about Chuckwallas:
-Strictly a rock dweller, the chuckwalla is found in rocky outcrops, lava flows, and rocky hillsides.
-Herbivores, feeding on many flowering desert plants, flowers and fruits. We feed our Chuckwalla greens, veggies, and tortoise pellets.
-Males can grow up to 16" in total length, although the average is around 12", with females a little smaller.
-Lifespan is about 7-10 years in the wild and 10-15 years in captivity.
-Being a diurnal lizard, they emerge in mornings and prefer to bask in temperatures reaching 105 degrees F. They brumate during the winter and emerge in early spring. The males are territorial and communicate using scent and visual means. Breeding occurs during the summer and eggs are buried under ground and incubate for 2-3 months, usually hatching mid-September. Females can lay up to six eggs during a season.