Weekly Facts - Lace Monitor
2nd December 2015
The Lace Monitor (also known as a Common Goanna) is a moderately built Monitor with a relatively long tail, being Australia's second largest species of Lizard. It is commonly found in East/Southest regions of Australia such as Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and small parts of South Australia.
As they climb trees, Lace Monitors generally reside in woodlands, sclerophyll forests (a.k.a the Aussie bushland) and rainforests. They love to feast on nestling birds, eggs, yabbies, fish, roadkill remains and leftover picnic scraps in common camp grounds. Could you imagine one of these critters crawling into your tent at night?!
Lace Monitors are solitary animals except for the breeding season in the spring and summer months. Approximately 4-6 weeks after mating, females will lay 4-14 eggs in a termite mound. The termites will then fix the hole the female has made, creating a natural incubator for her eggs. Approximately 9 months later she will return to the mound and dig it out for her hatchlings to be released.
There are now studies which stipulate a form of venom from a Lace Monitor bite, however they feature a high amount of bacteria built up in their gums which can be extremely dangerous to humans if left untreated.
At Featherdale, we have several Lace Monitors in various enclosures for you to see, usually enjoying a beautiful sunny day on a rock. But growing up to 2 metres in length, it is always a suprise to see something so large climbing a tree!
Information derived from Steve Parish's "A Wild Australia Guide - Lizards" written by Steve Parish and Stephen Swanson. You can also find plenty more interesting facts here!