February 9, 2016
Visitors to Hastings Blue Reef Aquarium over the half term holidays (Feb 13th-21st) will have the chance to name their newest arrival – a giant South American lizard.
The Argentine black and white tegu, which can grow up to a metre-and-a-half in length and weigh around seven kg, is the latest addition to the Rock-a-Nore Road attraction’s Jungle Room display area.
Despite its impressive dimensions, the tegu can develop surprisingly close bonds with its keepers, even learning to come when they are called.
In captivity it has been noted some individuals actively seek out human company.
Blue Reef Aquarium’s Leanna Lawson said: “He is a truly magnificent looking lizard and we’re hoping our visitors can come up with a suitably impressive-sounding name.
“Tegus come from South America, which might also help give people inspiration, and it has also recently been discovered this particular species is the only known type of lizard in the world to be partly warm-blooded.
“He enjoys eating fruit and vegetables and loves strawberries, which are definitely his absolute favourite. However he is also partial to turkey and the occasional boiled egg!” she added.
Visitors will be able to pick up a naming form at reception and can drop off their suggestions in a post box in the shop at the end of their visit.
The Jungle Room display features a variety of exotic reptiles, insects and spiders from around the world.