Asian Water Monitor - Varanus salvator
This is an Asian Water Monitor.
Water Monitors are large lizards found throughout Asia including India, Bangladesh, China, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos & Vietnam.
As their name suggests they're usually found in or near water and are excellent swimmers using their muscular tail both to glide through the water and as like a whip if threatened.
Water Monitors are the second heaviest lizard species, second only to the Komodo Dragon and continue to grow throughout their lives with some individuals getting to over 50kg in weight
Like all monitor lizards, they are carnivorous, using their sharp eyesight and keen sense of smell to find prey and powerful jaws, serrated teeth and sharp claws to eat it. They hunt a wide variety of prey including frogs, small mammals, fish, birds snakes, turtles and even young crocodiles and eggs.
I've not provided a reference image for this one so the challenge is as follows.
- What colours are a Water Monitor? Find out and try to colour it as accurately as you can.
- What else can you find out about this fascinating species? Try and find at least 3 more facts.
To learn more about this species and hundreds of others, check out my books Hidden Planet and Sensational Butterflies, available from Ladybird books.
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