New Farm Park, Brisbane

Saturday, February 5, 2011

WALLY THE WATER DRAGON

As I had a few queries about the water dragon in my garden, I will give you a little information about it.
It is an Eastern Water Dragon and is found on the east coast of Australia from Victoria to Queensland. They usually live near creeks and ponds, they can stay under water for 90 mins to avoid their predators, which are snakes, cats, dogs and foxes.
 This and the next photo were taken some years ago in the garden. The dragon is shy and can run away fast but they do adapt to human contact in parks and gardens especially if fed. They eat insects and shouldn't be fed human food.

This is a juvenile. The dragon hibernates in winter. In Spring the female lays 6 to 18 eggs in a shallow burrow. I often see a lot of young ones running around the garden and occasionally mum and dad. 

 The next shots were taken near the beach. The female grows to 60cm but the male can reach a metre (3 feet). Its tail is two thirds of its length.

 They spend a lot of time basking in the sun as they are cold blooded. They have spikes running down their back.

They are quite cute and you don't need to be scared of them.

Sometimes Wally and I scare each other in the garden. I don't see him because he is well camouflaged and when he suddenly stands up and runs off I nearly jump out of my skin. If they think they are cornered they will open their mouth wide and hiss while showing you the bright orange lining in their mouths, to try and frighten you away. Males are territorial and are aggressive to each other.

26 comments:

  1. Diane, this post is very interesting. Amazing that the water dragon can stay underwater for so long. Just looking at him, I'd be a little apprehensive, but as you say, one needn't be. Ironically I've posted about wildlife in and around my house tomorrow and on Monday! Hope you're all well and having a good weekend. Greetings Jo

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  2. Diane, thanks for sharing the information on your Wally the Water Dragon. I like all kinds of critters. Since I saw him on your other post I was wondering what kind of critter it was. There are so many different kinds of Lizards around the world. I like the name Wally too.

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  3. An amazing creature. I'd rather have those around outside than venomous snakes.
    Thanks for the informative post.

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  4. I'd love to see Hank meet up with him. He'd probably freak out. Hank, I mean. I think he's adorable. We get little tiny ones in and out of the house. I don't even mind if they get in. Nature's little dinosaurs.

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  5. It is funny to have such a special animal in the garden.Thanks for the information.

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  6. I think it's perfect you've named him Wally!
    Lucy's description of 'nature's little dinosaurs' made me smile.
    Thanks Diane for letting us get to know Wally better.

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  7. Interesting critter, Diane.. Are there more than one Wally in your garden? If we have one squirrel around or one chipmunk, that means there are LOTS more around. ha

    Wow--what a long tail. Wonder why??? Does he hang from the trees using his tail???

    Very interesting post, Diane. Amazing how they can stay underwater for 90 minutes... Wooooooo...

    Thanks for sharing.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  8. OK I love creatures like this -- at first their looks and behavior reminded me of the lizards we have running around here until I went back and saw the size of yours. Ours are more likely 3 inches at the most not three feet! But I'd love to see yours.

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  9. Great post! Your pictures, of course, are terrific. Interesting little creatures; 90 minutes under water!

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  10. Fantastic Diane, these water dragons are so interesting and really beautiful!

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  11. Hi Diane!

    My husband has some video footage of two water dragons fighting in a little rocky 'cave' along the coast. We were visiting my Mum & Dad in Caloundra at the time (3 years ago) and it was fascinating, even though rather gory, as the larger of the two had given the other one a really nasty bite and wasn't letting go. We watched for about 20 minutes until they went their separate ways.

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  12. Wally is a very handsome fellow; I like him!

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  13. Thanks for the information about Wally and the wonderful pictures. I only hope that the two of you don't scare each other too often.

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  14. That explains why we don't see them here in Adelaide - what interesting little creatures

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  15. Very cute wally dragon, it makes me scare sometimes. It's very informative entry of you. I learn one thing today.

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  16. Nice shots. I don't see any of these guys in my garden but do keep an eye out for them when I do the river walk at Jenolan Caves ... they are usually there basking in the sun.

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  17. A great post, Diane. I saw Boyd's Forest Dragon in the Daintree and what I thought was the smae in Kuranda, but having a closer look at Wally here, I'm inclined to think the fellow I photographed at Kurand may have been a water dragon. He certainly was long. Same colour markings too.

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  18. What a fascinating little creature, I love animals of all kinds. Thanks for all the information on Wally the Water Dragon, I really enjoyed it.

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  19. Love this feature on the water dragon.
    That's funny how you say you and Wally sometimes scare each other in the garden - can just imagine it all happening, as you describe :)

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  20. You have a lovely little pet there :)

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  21. Is that ever a cute little dragon ! He really has shrinked compared to his billion old grandfather ! I only know the little lizards which I saw for the first time in Italy and I called them mini crocodiles.

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  22. I think I'd have to hire a gardener for my gardens. At least when the bears, moose and coyotes are out in our fields you can usually see them coming. Thanks for answering your reader's questions - that's a great post and the pictures are amazing.

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  23. Fascinating! Thanks for introducing me to yet another amazing Australian creature. Not only is your photography beautiful, your blog is educational for this North American clueless reader. I love Wally! He's cute.

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  24. Wonderful photos Di:) Your garden is amazing no wonder Wally loves to spend his time there. xx

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  25. Glad you have them and not me....I hear they have long tongues;))))))))))))

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  26. He's actually kinda cute! DO they bite? If not, I wouldn't mind have one..or 2..but I might get a little freaked out about 6 little ones running around!

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