So happy they’re still around.
The Green Anole, a lizard familiar to anyone that grew up in the south. These little green cuties were everywhere when I was a kid. I remember spending a good chunk of my afternoons trying to catch what all the kids in the neighborhood called chameleons. They changed colors, but not with as much variation as a true chameleon. Still, we thought they were just as cool. My abuela even convinced all the grandchildren that we could catch a lizard with a piece of looped string and walk it like a dog. Later I realized she was just trying to give us an impossible task to keep us out of her hair all day. We still had a blast attempting though.
Nowadays all I usually see scrambling across the yard are those little bastard Brown Anoles. They’re adorable, don’t get me wrong, I just know they’ve chased away my beloved green beauties. I can’t hate on the brown ones, they’re from Cuba and I have certain loyalties since my family roots come from the island. While I can’t hate, I do resent the invasive brown buggers. The greens are the only American-native anole, so I feel bad that they’ve been taken over. Plain and simple, I miss them.
Every time I venture out to do yard work, I see a good number of anoles, all brown. One day, I asked my husband if he had seen any green ones around. To my surprise, he had never seen one or even heard of them. Then I realized it was because he’s not a native, so he wouldn’t have ever seen them. I don’t recall seeing one in the past 10 years or so, so I’m pretty certain they had been forced out by the time he arrived in the south.
Ever since that first mention of the Green Anole, I had been keeping my eyes extra peeled. Each time I looked, I couldn’t find one. Tonight, I was able to finally show him what I was talking about. The discovery came in the most unexpected place, the shower. It took a bit of work for us to catch the tiny guy, but we finally did it and released him in the backyard. I’m staying optimistic that he will be able to survive out there and that by next summer I’ll be seeing more like him. A huge bonus of the whole experience…I got to use the word dewlap. Although the actual part of the lizard is rather repulsive, I find the word quite amusing.