I carried my second cup of coffee outside this morning and enjoyed listening to the bird songs while I sipped. As I gazed into the Arizona White Oak near me, I noticed movement and was immediately aware of several lizards climbing up into the tree to sun themselves on the branches. I had a blast watching them – as they bobbed up and down in place doing “push-ups!” I ran inside for my camera and captured some of them – staying a distance away so as not to disturb them. They were a little shy. I’m going to “go out on a limb” and call them Tree Lizards. As best I can tell from my limited print resources, they match the coloration and habit of this type of lizard. They blended in so well with the bark that Jim did not even notice them until I pointed them out.
I’m calling the tree an Arizona White Oak – Quercus arizonica -due to the leaves and size although oddly enough there were some leaves that more closely resembled the Scrub Live Oak – Quercus turbinella. In reading more about these oaks on the website Vascular Plants of the Gila National Forest, I found out that the oaks here often intergrade within species making identification tricky. I learn something new every day!! I’m inclined to believe that the tree the lizards were sunbathing in could also be Quercus grisea – Gray Oak. What I DO know is that it is an OAK!!