Lace monitor

Varanus varius

The lace monitor or tree goanna is a member of the monitor lizard family native to eastern Australia. A large lizard, it can reach 2 m in total length and 14 kg in weight. The lace monitor is considered to be a least-concern species according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
Lace Monitor - Varanus varius I asked if I could move the grass out of its face ,but I was given a clear no don’t.
 Australia,Geotagged,Lace monitor,Summer,Varanus varius

Appearance

The second-largest monitor in Australia after the perentie, the lace monitor can reach 2 m in total length, or 76.5 cm SVL . The male reaches sexual maturity when it has a SVL of 41.5 cm. Females are generally smaller than males, with a maximum SVL of 57.5 cm, and becoming sexually mature at a SVL of 38.5 cm. The tail is long and slender and about 1.5 times the length of the head and body. The tail is cylindrical at its base but becomes laterally compressed towards the tip.

The maximum weight of lace monitor can be 14 kg, but most adults are much smaller.
Lace monitor- Varanasi varius . Sorry poor image. This one was very alert and moving away from me all the time. Australia,Geotagged,Lace monitor,Summer,Varanus varius

Distribution

These common terrestrial and often arboreal monitors are found in eastern Australia and range from Cape Bedford on Cape York Peninsula to south-eastern South Australia. They frequent both open and closed forests and forage over long distances a day).

The lace monitor is considered to be a least-concern species according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature .

They are mainly active from September to May, but are inactive in cooler weather and shelter in tree hollows or under fallen trees or large rocks.
Lace monitor- Varanus varius  Australia,Geotagged,Lace monitor,Summer,Varanus varius

Behavior

Despite its large size and mass, the lace monitor is an adept climber. One was recorded climbing a brick wall to seek shelter in a thunderstorm.
Lace_Monitor_(Varanus_varius) Monitor, a large reptile with blue stripes                      Australian,Lizard,Monitor,Reptile

Habitat

These common terrestrial and often arboreal monitors are found in eastern Australia and range from Cape Bedford on Cape York Peninsula to south-eastern South Australia. They frequent both open and closed forests and forage over long distances a day).

The lace monitor is considered to be a least-concern species according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature .

They are mainly active from September to May, but are inactive in cooler weather and shelter in tree hollows or under fallen trees or large rocks.
Lace Monitor  Lace monitor,Varanus varius

Reproduction

Male lace monitors gather around receptive females in the breeding season.

The females lay four to 14 eggs in spring or summer in termite nests. They frequently attack the large composting nests of scrub turkeys to steal their eggs, and often show injuries on their tails inflicted by male scrub turkeys pecking at them to drive them away.
Lace Monitor check the claws  Lace monitor,Varanus varius

Food

Their diets typically consist of insects, reptiles, small mammals, birds, and birds' eggs. They are also carrion eaters, feeding on already dead carcasses of other wildlife. Lace monitors search for food on the ground, retreating to a nearby tree if disturbed. They will also forage in areas inhabited by people, raiding chicken coops for poultry and eggs, rummaging through unprotected domestic garbage bags, and rubbish bins in picnic and recreational areas.

As they often swallow meat whole, they can be at risk of harm from some meat scraps, one was reported with a t-bone steak bone stuck in its throat and another with a plastic fork in its stomach. Another swallowed six golf balls that a chicken owner had placed in their coop to prompt their chickens to lay eggs.

They are preyed upon by dingoes and birds of prey, and like all Australian goannas, they were a favourite traditional food of Australian Aboriginal peoples, and their fat was particularly valued as a medicine and for use in ceremonies.
Lace Monitor  Lace monitor,Varanus varius

Defense

In late 2005, University of Melbourne researchers discovered that all monitors may be somewhat venomous. Previously, bites inflicted by monitors were thought to be prone to infection because of bacteria in their mouths, but the researchers showed that the immediate effects were more likely caused by envenomation. Bites on the hand by lace monitors have been observed to cause swelling within minutes, localised disruption of blood clotting, and shooting pain up to the elbow, which can often last for several hours. ''In vitro'' testing showed lace monitor mouth secretion impact on platelet aggregation, drop blood pressure and relax smooth muscle; the last effect mediated by an agent with the same activity as brain natriuretic peptide. Liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry found ample proteins with molecular masses of 2-4 kilodaltons , 15 kilodaltons , and 23-25 kilodaltons in these secretions. Washington State University biologist Kenneth V. Kardong and toxicologists Scott A. Weinstein and Tamara L. Smith, have cautioned that labelling these species as venomous oversimplifies the diversity of oral secretions in reptiles, and overestimates the medical risk of bite victims.
Lace monitor (Varanus varius) A youngster about 1.5 metres long. Wandering up a slope covered with leaf litter in a Queensland national park. Australia,Fall,Geotagged,Lace monitor,Varanus varius

Uses

The lace monitor was eaten by the Wiradjuri people; local wisdom advised eating lace monitors as they came down from trees as those that had eaten on the ground tasted of rotting meat. The Tharawal ate the species' eggs, collecting them in sand on riverbanks in the Nattai and Wollondilly. Goanna remains have been recovered in middens in what is now Sydney.

References:

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Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionChordata
ClassReptilia
OrderSquamata
FamilyVaranidae
GenusVaranus
SpeciesV. varius
Photographed in
Australia