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Beaver-tailed agama, June 2015

Beaver-tailed agama, June 2015
devilfish, 4 Jul 2015
    • devilfish
      Photo taken on the 28th June 2015.
    • vogelcommando
      Nice shot devilfish, the tail of this species is sooo un-lizardy :) !
    • Chlidonias
      Wow! I had never heard of this lizard before, so I had a little Google. Apparently they use their tail to block their burrow from predators.

      Are these rare in collections?
    • devilfish
      They are an unusual sight; I think this was my first encounter with the species in a zoo. There are some in private hands though.
    • Gulo gulo
      Looks to be Xenagama batilifera, not Xenagama taylori.
    • devilfish
      Great. Just out of curiosity, what are the differences?
    • Gulo gulo
      Colouration is variable between the two, with X. batilifera being more drab in colour. Scalation differs, smaller nuchal crest, minimal elongated scalation around the ears. Tail shape is more discoidal and flattened vs taylori. The whorling scalation on taylori almost forms a vertebral ridge where batilifera does not and scalation whorls out to the sides.

      Hope that helps? I tried to make it easy to understand. Some terms can be found via internet search. Cheers. :)
    • temp
      There are a whole bunch of differences between the two, but the main and by far easiest difference to use is the shape of the tail, as also highlighted by the repective common names of the two. It's show well here:
      Xenagamas phylogeny
      Xenagamas (scroll down)
      Without going into the scientific lingo, whenever I've seen the two I've felt that batillifera had a fairly "normal", if bloated, tail (not all that different from a number of other reptiles), while the tail of taylori looks remarkably odd and unlike anything else.
      I've seen the ones at Malmö a few times and they're taylori. I believe they're labelled as such, too.

      The two Xenagama used to be very rare in captivity, but after some successes with breeding by private keepers they started appearing more regularly.
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    Malmö Aquarium
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    4 Jul 2015
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