Water anoles can breathe underwater • Earth.com

Water anoles can breathe underwater


Today’s Video of the Day from Binghamton University describes a lizard that can breathe underwater for up to 16 minutes.

According to study author Professor Lindsey Swierk, the water anole seems to have adapted a unique respiration system that involves breathing out of an air bubble on its head.

“Diving under water and remaining there for a long time is an anti-predator strategy for water anoles,” said Professor Swierk. “These lizards aren’t particularly speedy, and taking to the water is a very effective option.”

“It’s easy to ‘disappear’ to a predator’s eye once you hide under water for a few minutes. I think that any underwater breathing adaptations in water anoles would have arisen to extend the amount of time they can stay in their underwater refuge.”

The research is published in the journal Herpetogical Review.

By Chrissy Sexton, Earth.com Staff Writer
Video Credit: Binghamton University

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