This time I decided to look further west, more in the heart of the range of this species. I saw many Zebra-tailed Lizards basking and scurrying about on the desert floor, and was distracted momentarily by a few Sonoran Spiny Lizards, before I glanced down a boulder-strewn wash to see a large yellowish lizard posed atop a boulder about ten feet away. I enjoyed the sighting during the six seconds it took me to lift my camera, and the collared lizard perhaps enjoyed watching me for the five seconds it took before vanishing. I searched the area but hadn't been looking in that critical second, so I didn't know which way it went and I had no luck finding it again. Ah well, I thought, the morning is young and perhaps I'll see others and I will be coming back this way eventually.
A couple of hours later I got a two-second glance at another largish, yellowish lizard as it clambered off of a large boulder and into a rock pile. I peered into the crevice into which it had vanished and could see the last part of the relatively smooth, cylindrical tail that confirmed it as another Crotaphytus nebrius. Ah well, I thought, the morning is no longer so young but soon I will be back to where I saw the first one; maybe it will be out again.
Alas, it was not. But as I neared the end/start of the trail, I spotted a familiar shape atop a rocky mound about 50 feet away. I don't usually carry binoculars when I'm out herping, but I had specifically brought them for collared-lizarding, and they confirmed that I had found Sonoran Collared Lizard #3. I got a few long-distance shots and then tried to sneak up closer without scaring the lizard off. I was about 50% successful; it definitely noticed me and slowly retreated to the safety of a nearby bush, but it wasn't spooked enough to vanish completely, and I got a few partially obstructed shots.
- Brennan, T. C. and Holycross, A. T. 2006. A Field Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles in Arizona
- Jones, L. L. C., Lovich, R. E. 2009. Lizards of the American Southwest: A Photographic Field Guide
- Stebbins, R. C. 2003. Peterson Field Guide to Western Reptiles and Amphibians, Third Edition