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Australian Wildlife

  Lace Monitor / Goanna (Varanus varius)





Lace Monitor / Goanna | Varanus varius photo
Close up of Goanna head. Photographed at Mt Coot-tha, Brisbane.

Image by ozwildlife - Some rights reserved.

Lace Monitor / Goanna | Varanus varius photo
Close up of forked tongue. Photographed at South Stradbroke Island.

Image by ozwildlife - Some rights reserved.

Lace Monitor / Goanna | Varanus varius photo
Photographed at South Stradbroke Island.

Image by ozwildlife - Some rights reserved.

Lace Monitor / Goanna | Varanus varius photo
Photographed at Jolly's lookout in Brisbane Forest Park.

Image by ozwildlife - Some rights reserved.

Lace Monitor / Goanna | Varanus varius photo
Goanna climbing paper bark tree, South Stradbroke Island.

Image by ozwildlife - Some rights reserved.



REPTILE FACTS

Description
Lace Monitors or Goannas are one of Australia's largest lizards. They have strong claws and powerful legs. They are dark grey to black in colour with cream or yellow scales forming bands and blotches. There are usually black bars across the snout, throat and chin. The tongue is long and forked like a snake . Monitors are the only lizards that have a forked tongue.

Other Names
Goanna

Size
The head and body length grows to about 55cm long with tail about 140cm long.

Habitat
Much of its time is spent up fairly large trees. It forages on the ground but will climb a tree when disturbed. It is found in forests, tall woodlands and open tablelands and slopes.

Food
Goannas are predators and scavengers eating insects, small mammals, lizards, nestling birds, eggs and carrion. It is common for several monitors to feed from the same carcass. After a large feed they are able to go for many weeks without feeding again.

Breeding
Mating takes place in Spring and Summer. The female Lace Monitor lays from 6-12 eggs. These are usually laid in termite mounds, particularly those found in trees. The female digs a hole on the side of the termite mound, lays the eggs and then leaves the termites to reseal the eggs inside the nest. She sometimes returns to the nest and opens it up with her strong claws to allow the baby monitors to escape.

Range
The Lace Monitor / Goanna is found in eastern and SE Australia from Cape York Peninsula in Queensland to SE South Australia



Classification
Class:Reptilia
Order:Squamata (Sauria)
Family:Varanidae
Genus:Varanus
Species:varius
Common Name:Lace Monitor / Goanna

Relatives in same Genus
  Ridge-tailed Monitor (V. acanthurus)
  Stripe-tailed Monitor (V. caudolineatus)
  Perentie (V. giganteus)
  Pygmy Mulga Monitor (V. gilleni)
  Kimberley Rock Monitor (V. glauerti)
  Gould's Monitor (V. gouldii)
  Mangrove Monitor (V. indicus)
  Pygmy Rock Monitor (V. kingorum)
  Mertens' Water Monitor (V. mertensi)
  Yellow Spotted Monitor (V. panoptes)
  Emerald Tree Monitor (V. prasinus)
  Heath Monitor (V. rosenbergii)
  Spencer's Monitor (V. spenceri)
  Storr's Monitor (V. storri)
  Spotted Tree Monitor (V. timorensis)
  Black-headed Monitor (V. tristis)