Stores actually sell anoles? Really? Huh. Down here, we have to do catch-and-release a couple of times a week to rescue the little buggers from our screened porch. (Can't grab 'em by the tail -- it'll fall off in our hands.) They run by the dozens along the top of the back fence; the boy anoles spend their workdays puffing up their orange chins and waggling their heads up and down to impress the girl anoles. That attracting-a-mate stuff is hard work, and the competition is, er, stiff.

To be honest, I can't really imagine keeping an anole in a tank or cage. They're incredibly active, social little things, unlike many larger beasties like iguanas, and I just hate the idea of shutting them up in a small place. But that's just me.

My son had an iguana for many years; nice pet, although when he managed to get out of his cage it was a real challenge to find him. He snuggled down into the sleeve of a winter coat in the closet once; that hunt took about a week.


Forgot to mention: a thousand years ago, when I was in junior high school, I used to use embroidery floss strands to make little "leashes" so I could wear anoles to school on my shoulder. Loved to freak out the the girly-girls who thought little lizards were icky.

Watch the tail if you get an anole. If you have to grab for an escapee and get only its tail, the tail will break off and keep on wiggling as a distraction while the anole dashes off to safety. Very weird the first time you see it, but a great survival tool. Anole tails regenerate in a couple of weeks, though.


Never had a lizard but it looks like this would be a good starter. There is a good wikihow page on them.


I don't believe in the idea of a "starter lizard". If you decide that you want to provide a habitat for a reptile, then its care is equally important no matter what the size. In my experience, smaller lizards did not necessarily make them easier to care for. I had a veiled chameleon about 10 years ago. It wasn't the nicest pet, but it looked really amazing. There would always be a cricket that he wouldn't eat, and it would eventually escape his enclosure and chirp all night long in my bedroom. Plus any insect eating lizard is going to have really smelly poop.

I owned a giant green iguana after that, for which I built an enormous walk-in enclosure. Green iguanas need a lot of attention in order to be socialized, but wow what a great pet. Yes, the care was very specific and difficult at times. Yes, I got bit a couple times. Would I do it all over again? Absolutely!!


My little brother used to love his pet lizards, and he had all kinds.

My whole family used to help him hunt for crickets and spiders to feed to them in his terrarium thingy (they love spiders). Building the terrarium was a lot of fun.

After the lizards, it ended housing baby snapping turtles, mice, and eventually frogs. I really think I liked the lizards the most though. Usually very fun to watch, especially when they are hunting down the crickets and such. Snapping turtles just like to bury themselves in the mud. Stupid snapping turtles.


@magic cave: Whoah! The town where this is happening is in the state just to the north of us. I showed it to my wife and told her that they are coming to Santa Catarina too. She didn't like that idea.


@ruger9mm: Wow! Really thorough guide to anoles!


@dmaz: I'm on a small mailing list of dog lovers spread across three countries. Most of us are not spider lovers. If you sit quietly, you can probably hear the shuddering going on.



'Cause I come from the land of lizards
And the lizards they have died
And the lizards they have died
And the lizards they have died
And the lizards they have"


i knew y'all would have great info for me. thanks much, everyone! looks like i've got some thinking to do.


I want to see your chameleon tattoo. Pictures or it didn't's the internet, ya know.