Grass Lizards: Quick And Easy

Like the little ground skinks in our backyards and the bunchgrass lizards that dwell on the Sky Islands in Arizona, there are lizards of many species and families that live among grasses, but there is only one genus of true grass lizards, and that is Takydromus. The family to which the grass lizards belong, the Lacertidae, is an immense Old World grouping of lizards that are, roughly speaking, analogous to the New World teiids and gymnophthalmids.

The genus Takydromus was first described in 1802. Certain species now in this genus have been known variously by the generic names of Apeltonotus and Platyplacopus. Both of these latter names are still commonly used as subgeneric names, allowing systematists to categorize these lizards by closely allied groups within a single genus.

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