Uromastyx Lizards: One of a Kind Pet!
As kids, my brother and I were always running around our farm, and it was usual for us to bring any injured animal in for medical care.
We had a house full of animals and birds of all kinds. Of all the animals, there was a lizard, which was one of my favorite.
It was a Uromastyx which loved me more than anyone else! Now that I am busy with my life, I don’t keep any animals from nature.
Uromastyx Lizard Information
Uromastyx is part of a group of lizards which belong to the agamid family. The agamid family also has bearded and frilled dragons, which are very popular as pets. There are more than 18 different species of uromastyx.
You can find them in North America, the Middle East, and across south-central Asia. This is a vast area spreading over 30 countries. You can find them from sea level to an elevation of 3000 feet. Learn more about these creatures to care for them in a better way.
Uromastyx Lizard Size
Uromastyx lizards are a group of lizards from the same species. Most adult lizards grow up to 18 to 20 inches in length. The big exception is the Egyptian uromastyx, which can grow up to 30 inches! Young ones or the hatchlings are just about 3 to 4 inches in length.
Uromastyx Lizard’s Lifespan
There are records of these lizards living to a ripe old age of 30 years. These are sporadic occurrences. Usually a uromastyx has a life span of about 15 to 20 years.
Of all the lizards in this species, it is the Egyptian uromastyx, which has the longest life span apart from being the largest. A hatchling will take about 4 years to grow to full size and become an adult.
These lizards can change colors according to the changes in temperature, just like many other reptiles. Their skin looks dull and dark in the cold season, and in warm weather or while basking, the colors become lighter. The dark skin allows them to take in more sunlight in winters.
Their tail is spiky and very muscular. They use the tail while fighting or when under threat. They swing the tail with a lot of force and make a hissing sound. They also open their mouths and show their teeth in trying to scare the opponents.
Uromastyx Lizard Care Guide
They are generally mild-mannered. A uromastyx will only rarely, if ever, bite or scratch you! However, if it feels threatened or cornered, then it may try to defend itself. You should pick them up correctly and handle them gently. You should not do anything abruptly or surprise it. The lizards do fight with each other for territory.
2. Cage or House
They need a lot of space to live comfortably. They like to graze and dig, and it is good to give them this lifestyle. There are many readymade cage options available. You can even buy a big glass enclosure, but you should put a lot of soil and vegetation to make it interesting for your pet. Make sure that the cage is secure and can hold the substrate and vegetation etc.
If your lizard is about 10 inches, then you need at least 4 by 2 feet, and if your pet is more than 15 inches, then the dimensions should be 6 feet by 2 and a half feet. More than the size, it is the gradient in the enclosure, which is more important.
3. Heating & Lighting
Uros are very active during the day, and like most other reptiles need heat and light to regulate their body temperature. They will absorb sunlight to be active and digest food. During the day, they will take turns to bask in the sun and then seek shade to maintain the right temperature. They can burrow down to more than a couple of feet! The temperature can be many degrees less than the surface.
You need to fix bright lights to keep them active. You should have different temperature variations in the cage. Keep the temperature around 75 to 95 degrees and go up to 125 degrees Fahrenheit in the basking areas. There should be a cool spot and a hotspot. You can keep rocks and branches of different sizes. It is better to switch off all the lights at night.
Arranging substrate for your pet is essential, and you should look for something suitable, inexpensive, and readily available. The best and easiest option is to spread about 2 to 3 inches of sand. On this, you can place all the basking spots and rocks to climb. If you use sand, then you need to provide a place or box for your pet to burrow under!
5. Uromastyx Lizard’s Food and Water
They mainly survive on plants. Collard, mustard, and turnip greens are a great option. Kale and spinach contain calcium-blocking agents, and you should give them only once in a while. Chop the greens, and you can mix some flowers to make it more delicious. They also like seeds and lentils. You can also give commercial reptile food. Ensure that you maintain the right ratio of calcium and phosphorus in the diet. You can add calcium and multi-vitamin supplements.
Uromastyx lizards have a gland near the nose which discharges salt. They do this to conserve water. They don’t like to drink much water and are happy with fresh greens. After laying eggs, the females drink a lot of water, and the young hatchlings also drink water.
Uromastyx Lizard Price
These are available for a price between 70 to 350 dollars. This significant variation depends on the specific lizard and how old it is. Between 100 and 125 dollars, it is possible to get an uro if you don’t have any particular needs.
Owning a pet of any kind increases your responsibility. However, when you have a reptile-like a Uromastyx, your responsibilities are even more. Read and gather as much information about them before you decide. Once you choose this beautiful and fascinating creature to be your companion, you will never regret it! Bring an Uro home and watch it make your life better!!