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Up, close and personal with fan throated lizard

Updated : 2018-06-27 17:20:48

Fan Throated Lizards (Sitana ponticeriana ) is a specie of lizards found mostly in India. A sub specie of this the Coloured Fan Throated Lizard, and possibly the most beautiful, is endemic to a small region of Maharashtra, in and around the Pune – Satara belt.

I managed to plan a trip to see this special Lizard a month back, with my wife. Some of my friends and family members felt that we were crazy, driving five hours to Satara to see a Lizard. The area that this Lizard is found is close to the Kaas Plateau and Chalkewadi plateau.

Male lizards bear a fan-like structure under their throats that is displayed by rapid extension and retraction during the breeding season, particularly during courtship period. This magical display of colors lasts only for around two month, mostly during May and June.

I came back from my trip with some concerns. The habitat of these lizards are getting destroyed due to massive industrialisation and urbanization. Hope the authorities are awake, and work towards protecting these magnificent creature.

Male lizards in this genus bear a fan-like structure under their throats that is displayed by rapid extension and retraction during the breeding season.
Male lizards in this genus bear a fan-like structure under their throats that is displayed by rapid extension and retraction during the breeding season.
The Fan Throated Lizard also uses a unique way of standing on it’s hind legs and displaying its fan to attract the female.
The Fan Throated Lizard also uses a unique way of standing on it’s hind legs and displaying its fan to attract the female.
The breeding season is during May and June, and the display are mostly during the morning times.
The breeding season is during May and June, and the display are mostly during the morning times.
Fan-Throated Lizard displays include not only extensions and retractions of the throat-fan, but also other movements such as head turns and changes in body position and raised tails etc.
Fan-Throated Lizard displays include not only extensions and retractions of the throat-fan, but also other movements such as head turns and changes in body position and raised tails etc.
The female of a Fan Throated Lizard has no fan’s under the throat. This picture depicts the behavior of shedding its skin , which is also seen in snakes.
The female of a Fan Throated Lizard has no fan’s under the throat. This picture depicts the behavior of shedding its skin , which is also seen in snakes.
The Fan Throated Lizard’s habitat is rapidly being eroded by urbanisation and industrialisation. Erection of windmills are destroying its habitat.
The Fan Throated Lizard’s habitat is rapidly being eroded by urbanisation and industrialisation. Erection of windmills are destroying its habitat.
The habitat of the Lizard. It is so small that one needs to be on the ground to see it. Also if they sense any danger, they hide under the rocks or gaps in the surface.
The habitat of the Lizard. It is so small that one needs to be on the ground to see it. Also if they sense any danger, they hide under the rocks or gaps in the surface.
Early morning view of Satara from the hill. Satara is famous for Kaas Plateau, also known as the Valley of Flowers of Maharashtra.
Early morning view of Satara from the hill. Satara is famous for Kaas Plateau, also known as the Valley of Flowers of Maharashtra.
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