Having a pet pass away is a heartbreaking experience that all pet owners dread. So when you’re thinking of adopting or purchasing a new pet, you may be wondering about its lifespan. This way, you prepare well for the time you’ll spend together.
How long do lizards live? If you’re thinking of getting a new lizard, or you’re merely curious about how long they live, this article will answer your questions.
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How Long Do Lizards Live?
A lizard’s lifespan depends greatly on its habitat. If they live in the wild, they probably won’t survive more than three years. As you probably know, lizards have a low position on the food chain, and many animals feed on them. With the lack of protection from predators, they don’t do well on their own.
On the other hand, if a lizard lives in captivity, it may live up to 20 years. The lifespan also depends on the species, which can vary greatly among the nearly 5,000 lizard species out there.
How Long Do Different Lizard Species Live?
There are precisely 4,675 lizard species out in the wild. Some of them don’t live more than three years, and some of them can live up to 20. Here’s a roundup of the most common types and their lifespans.
African Fat-Tailed Gecko
African fat-tailed Geckos can live up to 20 years. Their minimum lifespan is 12 years, but it depends on their habitat. If they’re in captivity, they’ll live longer.
African geckos are some of the most common pet lizards because they’re friendly with strangers. On top of that, they’re not needy, so they’re easy for beginners to care for.
These geckos can live in terrariums, and they only need water and a heating pad to keep them warm and hydrated. A 10-gallon terrarium will fit a pair of these lizards just fine.
Blue-tongued skinks are probably the only member of the skink family that works as house pets. Their movement is too slow for their own good, and they seldom open their mouths except for food. On top of that, they’re tiny, so they only need a small aquarium.
Raising a blue-tongued skink is almost like raising a turtle. You can see it, but you don’t feel it around the house, which is what some people are looking for.
These guys live from 12 to 20 years. They feed on insects and fruits, which should be easy to provide. Other than that, they only need a 20-gallon aquarium and a bowl of water.
Like African geckos, Bearded Dragons are common as house pets because they’re easy to take care of. They only need you to spray water on them daily. Other than that, it’s a fairly easy job. Plus, their small size only requires a small aquarium or terrarium, so they’re a relatively inexpensive pet to keep.
A bearded dragon can live from 8 to 12 years in captivity. It’ll need an aquarium, some landscaping to create a nice atmosphere, and a spotlight. Bearded dragons also feed on insects, which are easy to provide.
Like African Geckos and Blue-Tongued Skinks, Crested Geckos live from 12 to 20 years. They have the same slow movement as skinks, but they’re a bit more exciting because they love climbing.
If you provide a couple of branches in your aquarium, you’ll have fun seeing the lizard jump from one to the other.
Crested Geckos absolutely need landscaping in their aquariums, or else they’ll get depressed. So, aside from their basic water and food needs, you’ll have to provide some wood pieces.
A couple of branches will work fine, and if you can get a hollow wood piece, the lizard will love it. These little scaly guys love to hide during the day.
Northern Alligator Lizard
Northern Alligator Lizards are relatively easy to take care of, making them a popular choice as house pets. However, their lifespan is significantly shorter than other types of lizards. They live from 5 to 8 years maximum.
Northern Alligators are about the same size as green iguanas, but they don’t grow as rapidly, so they’re a bit easier to deal with. However, they can grow up to 6 feet, and they need an average-sized terrarium.
These lizards feed on small insects. Like Crested Geckos, they’re born with the ability to jump and climb high. So, you’ll need to provide good landscaping in the terrarium with a few wooden pieces for fun.
Green Iguanas aren’t that common when it comes to house pets. For starters, they’re not as easy to take care of as the previously-mentioned types. On top of that, they’re a bit larger than average, so they need a 55-gallon terrarium minimum.
Still, some reptile-enthusiasts love them. They live from 12 to 20 years, and they rapidly grow during these years. The males can reach a size of 6 feet, and their females grow up to 4 feet.
These lizards need a considerate space to move in, in addition to an overhead spotlight to keep a warm ambiance. They mostly feed on veggies and fruits.
Leopard Geckos can live up to 20 years, and they come in a wide variety of vibrant colors. In addition, they’re pretty tiny, only reaching 7–10 inches long, making them a popular choice as house pets.
These geckos are very laid-back and easy to deal with. They only need a warming spotlight above their heads and juicy insects to feed on.
How To Make Sure Your Lizard Lives a Long Life
The most vital thing to take care of when raising a lizard is the habitat. Lizards aren’t like cats and dogs; they won’t stroll around the house comfortably and stay in any room. They need aquariums or terrariums of the right size to house them, and they may need some landscaping pieces inside to imitate their natural environment.
What makes this even more challenging is that there’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to lizards. Each type will need different requirements in terms of space.
So, before you adopt a lizard, you need to make sure you can provide suitable living conditions and ample room for its species.
As you read above, some species need wood branches to climb on and you’ll need to provide those, too. That’s aside from the basic needs, like food and water. Some species also need a spotlight to keep their bodies warm.
Try to make sure your lizard’s water bowl is full every day, and watch its activity levels. Keeping your lizard happy is key to lengthening its lifespan. If there’s something affecting its mood, you should find the problem and resolve it.
How long do lizards live? Lizards can generally live from 3 years and up to 20 years. They don’t survive on their own for long in the wild. In the end, they’re tiny animals, and there are thousands of predators out there waiting to fulfill the food chain.
Lizards that are lucky enough to get adopted can live from 8 to 20 years, depending on the species and how well they’re looked after.
We hope our guide to the lifespan of common lizards has answered your questions and made you a more confident pet owner!