Florida's Exotic Wildlife. Species detail.
First year: 1970s
Established status: Populations
are confirmed breeding and apparently self-sustaining for 10 or
more consecutive years.
Estimated Florida range: 2
counties At least 10 years, 1 county Less than 10
Statewide trend: Unknown
Photograph by Kevin M. Enge © 2003
Threats to natives: Unknown.
Species Account: Small populations
have become established in Dade and Broward counties after escaping
from the pet trade, where it is very popular. This species is
native to Hispaniola and seems less hardy than the northern
curlytail lizard (Leiocephalus carinatus armouri). Adult males may
reach 25 cm (10 in) long and are more brightly colored than
females, with a pale brown back, yellowish vertebral keel and
dorsolateral stripes, and red vertical bars on the flanks separated
by pale blue patches. The dark-banded tail is not as tightly curled
as the northern curlytail lizard, and it is the only curlytail
lizard in Florida with lateral skin folds. Red-sided curlytail
lizards are wary and prefer hot, arid, open areas such as lawns,
fields, and parking lot edges, especially using piles of rock,
building materials, or other rubble (Bartlett and Bartlett
Habitats: Central or core urban
area, Low density suburban development, areas peripheral to core
urban areas, and small towns
|At least 10 years
||Small population in Broward County for about 10 years (Bartlett
and Bartlett 1999); Hollywood (Townsend et al. 2002)
|Less than 10 years
||Punta Gorda (Krysko et al., in press)
|At least 10 years
||Small population in Dade County for more than 20 years
(Bartlett and Bartlett 1999)
Bartlett, R. D., and P. P. Bartlett. 1999. A field
guide to Florida reptiles and amphibians. Gulf Publishing Company,
Houston, Texas. 278pp.
Krysko, K. L., K. M. Enge, J. H. Townsend, E. M.
Langan, S. A. Johnson, and T. S. Campell. In Press. New county
records of amphibians and reptiles from Florida. Herpetological
Townsend, J. H., K. L. Krysko, A. T. Reppas, and C.
M. Sheehy, III. 2002. Noteworthy records for introduced reptiles
and amphibians from Florida, USA. Herpetological Review 33:75.