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Carolina Anole

Anolis carolinensis


The male Carolina Anole has a bright, cherry red dewlap that is exposed when he extends a thin finger of cartilage running from his chin to the bottom of his neck. The cartilage expands the skin to form a "dewlap" that normally appears white but, when stretched, reveals its red underlayer. The male uses this dewlap to announce his territory to other males and, at the same time, to attract the eye of a female that hasn't yet chosen a father for her offspring. Since one anole may defend only a few square yards, it's not unusual to see several males patrolling a large pile of stones or logs, frantically doing push-ups to show off their dewlaps to best advantage. If a male is really agitated, he may open his mouth wide in a menacing display, and then--if a neighbor doesn't retreat--attack and clamp down on a rival with his toothy jaws.


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Spotted by

Highland Village, Texas, USA

Spotted on May 19, 2015
Submitted on Jul 7, 2015

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