The Tree Goanna or Lace Monitor, Varanus varius, is Victoria’s largest lizard reaching a snout vent length of up to 760 mm, and a total length in excess of 2 m. It is very dark, usually with lighter yellowish banding.
Photographer: Peter Robertson. Source: Wildlife Profiles Pty. Ltd.
Distribution and habitat
It is quite common from far East Gippsland through to the Healesville area, and along the Murray river system and lakes of north western Victoria. It lives in holes in trees.
As one of its common names suggests, this is a semi-arboreal species. It is an opportunistic carnivore, feeding mainly on mammals, birds, reptiles and carrion. Females lay 4–14 eggs in a clutch, often in an active termite mound, where the constant temperature and humidity are ideal for incubation.
Cogger, H. 2000. Reptiles and Amphibians of Australia. Reed Books.
Wilson, S. & Swan, G. 2003. Reptiles of Australia. Princeton University Press.