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Thorny Devil

Moloch horridus


How could anyone call this horridus? An absolutely stunning lizard that eats only ants. It is very slow moving and as a result has evolved large, tough spines that cover its body and make it difficult for predators such as birds to eat. Shame the spikes arent quite big enough and strong enough to burst car tyres as this may help the estimated 10,000 of these lizards that die each year on Australia's roads.


It inhabits arid scrub and desert over most of central Australia.

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28 Comments (1–25)

Dina 8 years ago

Cute creatures, I love them! Great shot!

JC_Forester 8 years ago

Very nice facial expression! The sly eye. Nice shot!

Mona Pirih
Mona Pirih 8 years ago

Stunning picture...

Carol Milne
Carol Milne 8 years ago

These are my favorite lizards from Australia. I missed it as spot of the day a number of months ago. Great job!

Amazing image, Congratulations on the SOTD.

bbprevas 9 years ago

great shot. he seems irritated with the whole photography process.

MayraSpringmann 9 years ago

Wow, Gorgeous!

CarolSnowMilne 9 years ago

Congratulations! Wonderful photo!

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway 9 years ago

Congratulations, Kristian ! - I love these guys and the frilled necked lizard - yet to see both in the wild.

Sumukha Javagal
Sumukha Javagal 9 years ago

Wonderful..! Congrats..:-)

Atul 9 years ago


Sachin Zaveri
Sachin Zaveri 9 years ago

congratulations !!!

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 9 years ago

Congrats. Nice spotting Kristian Bell. Fabulous iconic creature.

Josh Asel
Josh Asel 9 years ago

not only a fantastic animal but a freakin beautiful shot. way ta go mayne.

lori.tas 9 years ago

I have held two, they are soft to the touch. And quite docile. Their spines actually funnel water from the night-time dew to the edges of their mouth.

Maria dB
Maria dB 9 years ago

congratulations on your SOTD!

AprilWhite 9 years ago

Thank you for the info. Sendind this web site to my sister she will love it.. Glad I came across it.. will visit often.

Yasser 9 years ago

April, the Horned Lizard you speak of is only morphologically similar to this Thorny Devil. Although they look similar, they're actually not closely related at all.

williefromwi 9 years ago

Congrats on your spotting of the day award.

AprilWhite 9 years ago

In Tx. this is called a Horny Toad and is an endangered species.

NuwanChathuranga 9 years ago

Wow!!! great spot, Congratulations Kristian!!!

Yasser 9 years ago

Congratulations Kristian! This gorgeous Thorny Devil has earned you Spotting of the Day honors! Thanks for all the awesome submissions and we hope to see many more.

"The Thorny Devil is covered in an intimidating array of spikes and can eat thousands of ants in a day."


animaisfotos 9 years ago

Wonderful look. Great portrait. Thanks for sharing.

Maria dB
Maria dB 9 years ago

Very nice!

alicelongmartin 9 years ago

Nice close-up!

Kristian Bell
Spotted by
Kristian Bell

Western Australia, Australia

Spotted on Jul 17, 2010
Submitted on Mar 17, 2012

Spotted for Mission

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