Flagstaff, AZ
September 2022

This is the second Greater Short-Horned Lizard I’ve seen since being in Flagstaff. Even though I’ve spent lots of time in horned toad country across the West, this the first time I have seen ones in the wild. They used to be called (and are still called by many) horned toads or horny toads. But since they aren’t toads, they’ve been properly renamed by biologists. I find the horned lizards adorable in their own round, flat, warty way. Which is probably why I had a one as a pet as a child. Now I feel sad for the little lizard, trapped in a small aquarium in suburban Pennsylvania. I don’t recall what we fed it or how long it survived.

An interesting fact is that the greater short-horned lizard is one of the few reptiles that have live births rather than laying eggs. And I heard it on authority from someone who tried it, they like belly rubs!

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