ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Iberian Emerald Lizard lives in Spain and Portugal but is a "Near Threatened" species of reptile

Updated on May 27, 2015

Schreiber's Green Lizard

Male Iberian Emerald Lizard
Male Iberian Emerald Lizard | Source

Iberian Emerald Lizard

The Iberian emerald lizard (Lacerta schreiberi) is a pretty species of lizard found, as its name suggests, in Spain and Portugal (Iberia). It is also known as Schreiber's green lizard. In Spanish it is called "Lagarto Verdinegro".

It has a pretty vivid green colouration on its back in adult males, hence its name. This basic green colour is marked all over with black dots and markings, and the heads and throats of these male lizards is bright blue. The females are a greenish-brown with brown heads. The males are yellowish underneath with more black spots. Juvenile lizards are coloured more like the females and with lighter brown sides

Iberian Emerald Lizard

Iberian emerald lizard spotted on farmland.
Iberian emerald lizard spotted on farmland. | Source

Description and habitats of the Iberian Emerald Lizard

The Iberian emerald lizard has a long tail which is over twice the length of the main body, and this can mean that a large specimen of this reptile can reach as much as 38 cm in length, including the tail.

The Iberian emerald lizard is found in scrub-land, in clearings in woods, on farmlands, along fences and on banks, by rivers and streams, and in the valleys of mountain areas, where it can be found as high as 2,100 metres above sea level. It is mainly distributed throughout the north-western mountains of Spain and Portugal but has populations in coastal parts too. It is quite happy with a damp and humid environment.

This lizard is active by day and can swim well. The Iberian emerald lizard will also climb in bushes and on rocks and walls to sun itself and seeking prey.

The Iberian emerald lizard feeds mainly on insects but will also take smaller reptiles, such as other smaller lizards, and will eat some fruit. It is also reported to eat baby birds.

The Iberian emerald lizard mates in April and May and the females lay single clutches of 11 to 18 eggs in June.

Male Iberian emerald lizards do not defend territories but they will fight with rival males. This species of lizard can also hiss like a snake when alarmed and wanting to defend itself.

The Iberian emerald lizard's Conservation Status is "Near Threatened" on the IUCN Red List. It is declining in numbers mainly due to habitat loss. It does not adapt well to changes in the environment brought about by human developments and by forest fires, for example.

It is eaten by carnivorous mammals, birds of prey and snakes.

Iberian emerald lizard

European Green Lizard

The Iberian emerald lizard looks quite similar in many ways to the much commoner European green lizard (L. viridis), and the Western green lizard (L. bilineata). These closely related species have similar colouration to the Iberian emerald lizard.

There is an ongoing debate about whether these two aforementioned lizards are actually two distinct species but in either case they are not regarded as threatened like the Iberian emerald lizard is.

The European green lizard is found across Europe as far east as the coasts of Turkey and the Ukraine. It has been introduced into the state of Kansas in America and because of its wide distribution its Conservation Status is of "Least Concern."

Western green lizards coupling



    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      2 years ago

      We have a male & female living in our garden. I have actually caught the male eating the dogs food. The male will also let me watch him from a short distance, but not the female. By the way I live on the Algarve.

    • Green Bard profile imageAUTHOR

      Steve Andrews 

      4 years ago from Tenerife

      Thanks for owning up and sharing your experience, Lee!

    • profile image

      Lee Cloak 

      4 years ago

      Fantastic hub, unfortunately i killed one a few years back whilst in southern Spain, i was changing the baby's nappy and I just seen it running up the wall and I got a freight and went for it, I put it in a plastic bag and took it to reception, the lady behind reception went ballistic, I thought she was going to call the civil guard, she showed me a website on her computer about how they are protected and endangered, I've felt guilty ever since especially every time I see one, I keep a ceramic one in the kitchen as a daily reminder not to go into combat mode when one pops up, thanks for sharing, Lee

    • Green Bard profile imageAUTHOR

      Steve Andrews 

      4 years ago from Tenerife

      Thanks for your comment! Yes, as usual, habitat loss due to humans is causing big problems for animal species!

    • Buildreps profile image


      4 years ago from Europe

      Nice Hub about this beautiful creature. It's a pity they're close to extinction.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)