Captive husbandry and reproduction of Phrynosoma asio (Squamata: Phrynosomatidae) at the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens

  • Published source details Recchio I., Robertson-Billet M., Rodríguez C. & Haigwood J. (2014) Captive husbandry and reproduction of Phrynosoma asio (Squamata: Phrynosomatidae) at the Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens. Herpetological Review, 45, 450-454.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Breed reptiles in captivity: Lizards

Action Link
Reptile Conservation
  1. Breed reptiles in captivity: Lizards

    A controlled study in 2008–2011 at Los Angeles Zoo, USA (Recchio et al. 2014) found that giant horned lizards Phrynosoma asio bred successfully in captivity, and lower incubation temperatures resulted in longer incubation periods and larger hatchlings. Results were not statistically tested. In 2010–2011, a female produced two clutches of eggs, and 9 of 20 (45%) and 15 of 19 eggs (79%) hatched successfully. In 2011, incubating at 26.5°C rather than 28°C resulted in longer incubation periods (26.5°C: 107–112 days; 28°C: 85–92 days) and larger hatchlings (26.5°C: 1.7–2.1 g; 28°C: 1.4–1.6 g). In 2010, eggs were initially incubated at 31°C but eleven began to wither after a few days. In 2008, one female and two male lizards were housed in a 380 litre tank with a substrate of 80% sand and 20% soil. Temperatures were 28°C, with a basking area at 30–37°C, and 70% humidity. In 2010, eggs were moved to a 3 litre plastic container, placed in vermiculite (4:1 ratio with water by weight), and incubated at 31°C. After a few days the temperature was reduced to 26.5°C and more water was added to the vermiculite (2:1 ratio with water). In 2011, six eggs were incubated at 28°C, and 13 at 26.5°C.

    (Summarised by: William Morgan)

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