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Leave Lizards in the Wild

Lizards and other wild animals belong in their natural habitat and not your backyard – is the message the Victorian Government is urging people to remember this Christmas.

Every year, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) receives a number of reports of people stealing natives reptiles and illegally keeping them as pets.

Blue tongue lizards, shinglebacks, bearded dragons, Jacky dragons, Eastern long-necked turtles and tree, water and rock skinks are all animals commonly taken.

People wanting to keep reptiles as pets must hold a licence and purchase captive-bred animals from licensed breeders or commercial wildlife dealers.

Glenn Sharp is Operations Manager for DELWP and said lizards remain in the wild.

“You can’t just abduct lizards from their natural environment and local population…you negatively impact that ecosystem and compromise the welfare of the animal.

“In some areas, particular reptile species are in decline, and by taking them from the wild, you are directly contributing to them becoming a threatened species,” he said.

People are also encouraged to leave lizards and turtles found along roadsides or other areas alone, regardless of if it may not be their normal habitat.

To apply for a wildlife licence visit: