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Posted by kerry on January 10, 2002 at 17:29:43:
......looks like there IS inteligent life on Mars, the lizard and plants that is, certainly NOT the man(myself) in this photo(LOL).
The photo was taken by my friend Jeff Mitchell near St. George, Utah, in May of 1993 at construction site located in prime Gila Monster habitat. It was the second time I had encountered this very lizard, the first time being almost exactly one year earlier. Yes, he was literally within feet of the marker when encounterd. He was one of an estimated twenty-six Gilas living in the area of impending habitat destruction. Eight years later in May of 2001 I was fortunate enough to find him again living in exactly the same area he had frequented before, which was at the furthest point away from the construction on the property that had been developed. All of the other lizards that lived closer in to "ground zero" have disappeared, and from the "sign" I've been able to locate it is likely that only a few others(no more than 3 or 4 total) remain in the small undesturbed area between the area where this male lives and the next nearest habitat destroying developement, which by the way is only a little more than a quarter-mile away. Time IS NOT on the side of the Gila Monster in Utah. By the time developers run out of room here we may have lost up to 90% of the most favorable habitat needed to support their continued existance. By comparison, the endangered Desert Tortoise is fairing far better here.
If you take a good look at the tail of this big ol' male(not me, the lizard) you will see that he has six tailbands(5 plus the tip), one more than is typical of cinctum.