Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to introduce the newest addition to my household, and the first denizen of my terrarium. This is Gilgamesh, a male Anolis carinolensis
, or Green Anole. These little lizards are sometimes mistakenly referred to as "American chameleons," because they can change from bright green to tan, brown, and even a blackish color. However, they are not true chameleons, and the mechanism of the color change is different from that seen in a chameleon.
Although the rule with herps (and most reptiles) is generally to keep different species housed in separate terrariums, all the information I've been able to find indicates that Green Anoles and Rough Green Snakes have the surprising ability to cohabit without running into the usual problems (snake eating lizard, lizard dying of fright-induced-stress, lizard trying to kill snake, etc) that can happen in these situations. In addition, they eat the same foods, and require the same humidity and temperature, as well as sharing other environmental needs. The people I've talked to who keep or have kept Rough Greens (including the nice reptile/herp specialist at the pet store) have all agreed that, in the case of these two species, an exception to the normal isolation rule isn't a problem. Some even suggested it could extend the life of one or both of the pets, but I'm not sure I believe that. These are creatures of pure instinct, all stress/not-stress and response to stimuli. I'm not sure they really have social needs/preferences, or experience loneliness.
Unfortunately, I have not yet managed to get any photos of him when his dewlap
is on display. He has been eating crickets just fine, and seems to be adjusting well to his new home.