Scientific name: Lacerta agilis
The sand lizard is extremely rare due to the loss of its sandy heath and dune habitats. Reintroduction programmes have helped establish new populations.
Average lifespan: up to 20 years
Protected in the UK under the Wildlife and Countryside Act, 1981. Priority Species under the UK Post-2010 Biodiversity Framework. Listed as a European Protected Species under Annex IV of the European Habitats Directive.
When to seeApril to October
AboutThe sand lizard is one of the UK's rarest reptiles. It favours sandy heathland habitats and sand dunes, and can be spotted basking on bare patches of sand. Sand lizards are confined to a few sites as destruction of their habitat has reduced their range.
Males emerge from hibernation in spring, turning a bright green colour as they get ready to mate. Females lay their eggs in the sand in June and July, and the young hatch one to two months later.