IUCN Species of the Day: Sail-Fin Lizard


The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species(tm)

Photo credit: Scott Corning


The Sail-fin Lizard, Hydrosaurus pustulatus, is listed as ‘VULNERABLE’ on the IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM. This semi-aquatic reptile is found in the Philippines, and is as at home in water as it is in trees. These large creatures can exceed a metre in length, although much of this is tail.

The chief threat facing the Sail-fin Lizard is the destruction and degradation of its habitat. Its woodland habitat is being cleared for logging and agriculture, and its aquatic environment is often affected by water pollution and increased sedimentation due to erosion into waterways. This erosion is caused by changing land-use patterns, including increased logging. Hatchlings are particularly at risk from collection for the international and local pet trades, whilst the adults are hunted for consumption.

Sail-fin Lizards are fortunately found in many protected areas, but there is a need to better regulate the collection of this species from the wild, as populations are generally considered to be susceptible to overharvesting. There is also a need for improved regulations to prevent contamination from agrochemicals in waterways used by this species.


Geographic Range of the Sail-Fin LizardCredit: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™


To learn more about the Sail-Fin Lizards, click here.  Or visit the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ by clicking their logo below.



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To learn more about the Bush Warriors “Species of the Day” feature, please click here and read up on our initiative to raise awareness about the loss of earth’s biodiversity.