jerry jackson
Photographed by Bette Jackson

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Source: Anole 3

Length of Segment: 00:01:09

Hi, I'm Dr. Jerry Jackson, out with the wild things. The slender five to eight inch long lizard known as the green anole is common through much of Florida, and has likely benefited from many human actions. It prefers edges and more open areas in forests as it feeds on insects, spiders, and other small creatures from the ground to tree trucks and branches to the leafy foliage sometimes high in trees. It does well even in urban areas, so long as there is sufficient shrubbery to provide it safe retreats from predators, and pesticides are used sparingly. Enemies of the green anole vary with age of the lizard and locality. Birds ranging from hawks to blue jays and even red-bellied woodpeckers will occasionally capture one. Several kinds of snakes eat them. Some invaders also diminish green anole populations. Feral cats are a serious threat. Young green anoles fall prey to the introduced Cuban tree frog and large Cuban anoles, which also compete with the green anole for food. Green anoles, with their lime-green scales and pink dewlap add a touch of color, fascinating behavior, and natural insect control to Florida backyards. They're well worth encouraging.

'With the Wild Things' is produced at the Whitaker Center in the College of Arts and Sciences at Florida Gulf Coast University. For 'The Wild Things', I'm Dr. Jerry Jackson.

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