Move Over Spiderman, Here Comes Spiderlizard! (VIDEO)
Following the recent release and success of The Amazing Spiderman, stores are over-flowing with all kinds of red and blue superhero costumes. However, this lucky reptile does not need to depend on any kind of fake attire - It is naturally born with an uncanny resemblance to Spiderman.
The male Mwanza Flat Headed Agama lizard sports the exact color mix as Spidey - A bright red head and torso and a beautiful blue body. Just like the superhero it changes its attire depending on the situation. In the lizard's case it happens to be the sun's heat that brings out its superhero colors. At night or in situations where it perceives danger, the lizard changes to a deep brown, so that it can easily camouflage itself in the natural surroundings. Female Agama lizards do not have the same capabilities - Their coloring remains just plain brown.
Native to Tanzania, Rwanda and Kenya, the reptiles can life for up to 15 years in the wild. Though the lizards originally resided in the forests and African bush, they have been able to adapt to the loss of their habitat and can now be found inside thatched roof huts and other small spaces, from where they emerge periodically, to feed.
The omnivoresthat can grow up to a foot long, dine on insects like locusts and crickets, as well as, seeds, berries and sometimes even the eggs of smaller lizards. They are fast runners and just like the superhero, can scale walls quite rapidly. What's cool is that if caught at the right moment, they even pose like him.
While these gorgeous lizards do make great pets and are popular in certain parts of Europe especially Britain, in order to survive, they need to be kept in a special temperature controlled environment and fed a balanced diet of the insects they are accustomed to in their natural African habitat. As to whether the reptile species was the inspiration behind the creation of our favorite superhero? That's a question only his creator Steven Ditko can answer - But it sure seems plausible, doesn't it?
Resources: Huffingtonpost.com metro.co.uk,thelizardlounge.com,Wikipedia,org,dailymail.co.uk,