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Regal Horned Lizard

Regal Horned Lizard
Photo Information
Copyright: Jane Magen (jaycee) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
Genre: Plants
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-05-01
Categories: Desert
Camera: Canon SX10IS
Exposure: f/5.0, 1/400 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2009-05-04 8:21
Viewed: 6300
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 64
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Regal Horned Lizard

A medium-sized (up to 117 mm or 4.6" from snout to vent), exceptionally flat and wide lizard with a short tail and a crown of flattened, dagger-like horns radiating from the back of the head. The base of each of the four central horns is in contact with that of its neighbor distinguishing this lizard from all other horned lizards in Arizona. Several isolated, pointed scales project from the back. Each lower side of the body is edged with a single fringe of enlarged, pointed scales. The anterior surfaces of the limbs are covered with enlarged, keeled, pointed, projecting scales. Base coloration is usually reddish brown, tan, or gray and usually matches the soil on which the animal lives. The center of the back is usually noticeably lighter in color than the sides of the body. There are often two dark, muted, and soft-edged blotches on the neck. The underside is pale with small, dark spots. Some specimens have a faint, light colored stripe running down the middle of the back.

This lizard is distributed across southeastern Arizona and along the southern transition zone of our central mountains region. In our state it occurs at elevations ranging from about 900' to about 4,500.

The range of this lizard in Arizona is within Arizona Upland Sonoran Desertscrub, Chihuahuan Desertscrub, and Semidesert Grassland communities. It inhabits valleys, rocky bajadas, and low foothills. It is usually encountered in relatively level areas with low shrubs, and open, sunny patches.

This diurnal ground-dweller can be active at any time of the year but winter activity is usually restricted to unseasonably warm days. It seeks shelter from cold temperatures by burrowing into the soil. It occasionally squirts blood from its eyes when threatened or captured. This blood might have a foul taste designed to deter predators. Other defensive behaviors include inflating itself by gulping air and poking with the horns.

The Regal Horned Lizard feeds primarily on ants but it also takes beetles and other insects.

In summer a clutch of up to 33 eggs is laid in a nest excavated from loose soil. The nest consists of a small chamber at the end of an approximately 14" long tunnel.


eqshannon, zetu, chrisruth, billynewboy, nglen, Silvio2006, Luis52, PeterZ, eng55, KOMSIS, MMM, sranjan, siggi, boreocypriensis, goldyrs, Argus, tuslaw, NinaM, uleko, xTauruSx, jusninasirun, CeltickRanger has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To boreocypriensis: Hi BBjaycee 1 05-05 10:24
To billynewboy: Thank Youjaycee 1 05-04 17:12
To LordPotty: You Win the Bet!jaycee 1 05-04 17:10
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Critiques [Translate]

This looks straight out of a magazine...and I would be reading that mag as well...not going anywhere near this. I saw Godzilla!:-) One of your best Jane..Seriously!

Witaj Jane,
Amazing Regal Horned Lizard. Very sharp painting and it gives back animal's colour well. I thank za interesting description. I found out a lot of.
Pozdrawiam - Roma

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2009-05-04 8:37]

Hello Jane
Wonderful capture, I like sharp details and natural colors.
Well done.

Hi jane!

You present us a very strange creature. It's ugly... and beautiful at the same time. The effect created by the bubbles and the waves suits the patterns of the animal very well. Moreover, the lighting and the sharpness as well as the colour management are superb. But most important is the deep effect that your picture creates... the monster that comes straight from the sea!

Kind regards


Hi Jane

This is a truly beautiful shot of a truly scary looking creature.
You have composed a great shot and must be applauded for that.
Well done:)
Thanks for sharing the good notes with us.


Hello Jane
This is a superbly impressive capture of what we call in the UK a frog or a Toad, But you have a Prehistoric one here!!
The focus is spot on as is the sharpness, The only downside is that the 800 pixel length upload limit doesnt let us enjoy this in the detail it deserves.
All the Best

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2009-05-04 9:27]

Hi Jane. What a fantastic looking lizzard so taks for posting this one. You have been able to get a good low POV to be at the same level . with good detai lin the skin with natural looking colours. well done TFS.

Ciao Jane, this one looks like an ancient monster, splendid capture with wonderful details and excellent sharpness, very well done, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • Luis52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1175 W: 8 N: 4240] (15809)
  • [2009-05-04 10:02]

Hola Prima.
Excellent Macro. Excellent POV and sharpness.
One of Your best. I have seen some of this Lizard before. Did he cry blod? as You said in the note.
TFS Cousin.

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2009-05-04 10:20]

Hello Jane,
What a special photo of this Regal Horned Lizard. Fantastic low POV and excellent sharp details. Beautiful natural colours. Good composition.

  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2009-05-04 10:21]

Hi Jane,
Very nice capture of this lizard.I'd never seen it before.POV,sharpness,clear details and 3D effect are wonderful.Have a great week!
Thanks for posting..

  • Great 
  • KOMSIS Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 820 W: 0 N: 2419] (10674)
  • [2009-05-04 10:33]

Hi Jane,
Like a monster ...
Wonderful details and splendid sharpness.
Best regards,

  • Great 
  • MMM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1114 W: 0 N: 2546] (11425)
  • [2009-05-04 10:34]

Hi Jane
Beautiful capture.Excellen low POV.That image is razor sharp with excellent control of the detail.
TFS Michel

Hello Jane,
I fully agree with Bob, who feels this has straight out of magazine. Execellent details, sharpness & POV.

Hello Jane,

What a take of the lizard, its coat looks lethal. My initial thoughts were that it was a frog but then, the claws and eyes gave a clear picture!

Well done, a wonderful take!

Thanks for sharing!

Hello Jane,
what a wonderful picture of this lizard, great visual impression, superb sharpness and splendid colours, perfect exposure in a very pleasant composition.
Best regards

beautiful capture Jane !
perfect sharp and fine details , nice colours and good exposure !
well done !

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2009-05-04 13:09]

Hello Jane,
A very well focused shot of this lizard.The POV and DOF are very good,the details are sharp and clear.The BG is very well done.Nicely composed .TFS
Best regards Siggi

Hi Jane
A nice sharp image of this Regal Horned Lizard.
What a fascinating species,and much easier to photograph than those birds I bet ;)
A nice job on this one.
TFS & Cheers

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2009-05-04 16:07]

Hi Jane,surely this isn't the winner of the most beautiful animal 2009..hehhe...but how is strange! I never seen nothing like that,your pic is a great news for me and taken whit fantastic sharpness and perfects colors.Today 2 points are not enough,my best best compliments,have a nice day,LUCIANO

Hi Sister,
What a beauty:) amazingly beautiful capture of this spiny beauty with excellent details and nice composition.
TFS and cheers,

PS. since i am still in trip to SE and E Anatolia (that i have not get time for internet), sorry for missing your many new uploadings.

WOnderful little creature!
We have horned lizard here (Horny Toads) but they're scrawny compared to this little dude/dudette. :)

What an amazing shot of this beautiful creature, sis!superb clarity and details.

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2009-05-05 12:30]

Hello Jane,
A real 'beauty' taken from a fine POV with excellent sharpness and contrast with the surface that it is on.
In fact this is the first time I have seen a photo of a Regal Horned lizard and this might be a first on TN.
Thanks for posting this one!

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2009-05-05 19:10]

WOW! What a fantastic shot!! Love it Jane!!!
Excellent detail and the low POV works perfectly for showing off this little guy!! Great work!!

OMG!! This is the first time that I see this ugly animal :o)
Great focus and details, dear Jane. Nice capture.
Congratulations and TFS!

Warm regards,

  • Great 
  • NinaM Gold Star Critiquer [C: 773 W: 3 N: 1157] (4077)
  • [2009-05-06 7:16]

My oh my, Jane! Where those creatures do live? Close to your home? Where did you take this picture, I am amazed! I see myself crossing a street and wait for the King Lezard (remember Jim Morrison) to finish crossing the road. It looks half frog, half lizard and those spikes are very impressive. Your picture is cristal sharp, the colours as natural as can be. Many thanks for the informative notes,


  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2009-05-07 9:37]

Hello Jane,
Wow, this frog-like Lizard certainly looks very 'regal' with a crown on the head! What a fascinating creature and so well captured flat on its belly! Great details and colours and I like the low angle. Excellent work, Jane!
TFS and all the best wishes, Ulla

Superb shot Jane. i love this one.
TFS and regards,

Hi Jane,

A slightly different post and yet something that I have never seen before. Strange lizard with pristine sharp details. Well done and TFS.

Have a wonderful weekend and warmest regards,

hello Jane

superb close-up photo of this Lizard, with very fine POV, DOF
and framing, superb focus on it with great sharpness and details,



  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-07-03 1:49]

Hi Jane,
wow..this is really weird and strange one for me. so unique and nevers seen before.
Well presented in great details and superbs colours contrast.
the thorns really exciting.


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