Yellow-spotted tropical night lizard

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Yellow-spotted lizard
Lepidophyma flavimaculatum.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Reptilia
Order: Squamata
Family: Xantusiidae
Genus: Lepidophyma
Species: L. flavimaculatum
Binomial name
Lepidophyma flavimaculatum[1]
A. Duméril, 1851

The yellow-spotted lizard (Lepidophyma flavimaculatum) is a night lizard ranging from central Mexico to Texas. It includes two subspecies, Lepidophyma flavimaculatum flavimaculatum and Lepidophyma flavimaculatum obscurum.

Yellow-spotted lizards are among the largest of the night lizards, reaching a length of 12.69 centimetres (5.00 in). They are nearly black in color, with a series of yellow spots running along their sides from the tips of their snouts to their rear flanks. The spots shift into thin and subtle yellow bands on their tails. There is also yellow coloring on their underbody. Their heads are smooth and snakelike in appearance, while their bodies are covered in rough skin. They have black teeth and a milky white tongue.

Like all night lizards, it is viviparous, giving live birth to its young. Yellow-spotted tropical night lizards also include all-female parthenogenetic (asexually reproducing) populations, located towards the southern end of their range in Central America.

Yellow-spotted tropical night lizards live in decaying logs in wet climates. The average life span of the Yellow-spotted tropical night lizard is around 10–15 years in the wild.

Uncommon in the exotic pet trade, yellow spotted night lizards are aggressive and can deliver a very painful bite to anyone who may handle them. Offspring born by parthenogenesis are handle-able if they are acclimated early in life. Young bark lizards can coexist with like-sized species who enjoy a similar warm and humid climate. Adult bark lizards can not be tamed by handling alone, and will damage their nostrum, or nose scale, if kept in a glass enclosure near a high traffic area or not provided with suitable daytime shelter. The most common issue with adults is shedding problems, particularly after they give birth, and if humidity is not kept constant, shedding will occur.


  1. ^ "SPECIES Lepidophyma flavimaculatum". UniProt. Retrieved 9 May 2011.