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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Save the Panay Monitor Lizard of the Philippines

The Panay Monitor Lizard (Varanus mabitang), locally known as mabitang or bayawak is an endangered species of monitor lizard. This species which is endemic in Panay Island was included in red list of IUCN. In comparison to common Water Monitor Lizard (Varanus salvator nuchalis) and Philippine Monitor Lizard (Varanus olivaceus), this species is found to be entirely herbivorous, feeding primarily on the Screw Palm Fruits. This is also darker in color compare to Water Monitor and Philippine Monitor lizards which is lighter in color.

This species of monitor lizard lives in large trees in tropical moist forest of Panay Island. They are threatened due to overhunting for food and deforestation, and could soon become extinct from the country if not given priority for conservation.

Panay monitor lizard on ground

Panay monitor lizard same color of the bark of tree
Close-up of Panay monitor lizard's eye

The foot of Panay monitor Lizard

credit to Tim Laman
Panay monitor lizard basking on sunlight

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