Photo and Haiku for 24 August 2022

A Short-horned Lizard

Can squirt blood at predators

Marvel of Nature

Short-horned lizards….they are not toads…. primarily use cryptic behavior and coloration as a defense against predation.  When discovered, they may flee for cover or stand their ground.  They will readily inflate their lungs to appear larger or more difficult for a predator to swallow.  In some cases, they will eject blood from their orbital sinus (the corner of the eye), effectively squirting blood at a predator. This has proven a good defense against Canids…coyotes, foxes and dogs.  Apparently, it leaves a bad taste and even if the lizard dies the Canid will probably not attack another Short-horned Lizard. Cropped and enlarged cell phone image

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