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Australian Water Dragon

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As this lizards name definitively implies, the Australian Water Dragon (Physignathus lesueurii) is native to Australia. They live in a range that runs from Victoria to Queensland in Eastern Australia. They are the only species in the genus Physignathus that lives in Australia.

Australian Water Dragons stay near water, and can be found all around creeks or rivers in their range. They will normally hang around areas of the water that are covered by branches, which they use to bask in the sunlight.

Adult male Australian Water Dragons grow to lengths of about 3 feet, while females grow to 2 feet. Their tails make up about two thirds of their total length. Males are colored more boldly than females are, and normally have a red colored chest. Both male and female Australian Water Dragons get darker in color as they get older.

Australian Water Dragons are extremely good swimmers, and are adept climbers as well. Their limbs are evolved for these activities; they are muscular, powerful and have large claws. Both males and females have a pronounced nuchal crest.

The Australian Water Dragon shares the Genus Physignathus with one other lizard, the Chinese Water Dragon.

Australian Water Dragon Sub-Species

Both sub-species of the Australian Water Dragon look very similar. They both are the light gray to green in color and have black bands over their bodies. These bands run along their backs, legs and tail.

Physignathus lesueurii lesueurii - Eastern Water Dragon
The Eastern Water Dragon is distinguished by black bands running down their heads from behind their eyes.

Physignathus lesueurii howitti - Gippsland Water Dragon
Gippsland Water Dragon's can be distinguished by black bands on their throats. These bands normally have shades of yellow or orange mixed in.

Australian Water Dragon Classification

- Kingdom: Animalia
 - Division: Chordata
  - Class: Reptilia
   - Order: Squamata
    - Suborder: Sauria
     - Family: Agamidae
      - Genus: Briba
       - Species: Physignathus lesueurii

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