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Will Anole lizards bite? (All the Facts You Need to Know)

If you are wondering about Anole lizards (Click here to see why Anoles love this substrate), or weighing up if its the best pet for you, the chances are you have wondered if they can be trusted or if they may bite. If thats the case lets get straight to it.

Will Anole Lizard Bite? Yes, they will bite. But you have to provoke them before they will consider doing this. Understand this is a protective measure from them. Whilst they are aggressive, they will only bite if provoked.

One you understand the risks, you need to understand what might trigger these lizards to bite you and what their behaviour is like, before you consider buying one or even getting close to one. Read on and let me break this down for you.

Do Green Anoles Have Teeth?

Yes, the Green Anoles have very small and unsharp teeth that they use for chewing up their food. Their bites are harmless as they don’t even pierce the skin. In fact, most owners don’t even realize that they have teeth because of the small size.

Are Anole Lizards Aggressive?

The adult male anoles can be particularly aggressive towards each other when it comes to territorial disputes. They often fight with other males to defend their territory.

There are several ways that these male species warn each other or show signs of aggressiveness. Some of these include compressing the body, extending the dewlap, bobbing their heads, and inflating dorsal cavities to make themselves appear larger. 

However, despite the warning, if the male anole still continues to approach, they will start fighting by biting and scratching each other. This is often why males are found with numerous scars on their head and face. Their territorial area is about 1 cubic meter.

These male species are so aggressive, they have even been found fighting with their own reflections. Thus, you should only keep one male in a tank.

Female anoles, on the other hand, are much calmer and can easily live with each other without fighting. Of course, ensure that there is enough room and basking spots for all to share equally.

Do Anoles Enjoy Being Handled By Humans?

Since these are extremely aggressive animals, we do not recommend handling them too much. Most green anoles are okay with gentle handling but would not like to be gripped tightly.

They seem to prefer perching on their owner’s shoulder or their hands.

Furthermore, you should be extremely careful when handling them as they are incredibly fragile lizards. Do not hold them by their tails or they will lose their tails easily and might even run away.

Since they are very agile climbers, you might have to spend hours searching for them. Most often than not, when you lose them once, you may not ever find them again.

Special care needs to be taken with those anoles that are freshly purchased from a store. Their new environment needs adapting to.

So, you should try letting your lizard pet get more comfortable with you and its new home before you decide to handle it. It might take a week or two to adapt to its surroundings.

How Do You Tame A Green Anole?

When you get your green anole fresh from the pet store, you might want to let it get accustomed to its surroundings before you start to handle it. The process might take a week or two, but we advise you to be patient.

Because the lizard is in a new surrounding, it might get stressed. So, we recommend providing it with various hiding places inside the terrarium so it can hide when it gets scared.

In order to get it accustomed to your touch, try feeding it by hand. You can provide its favorite meal and provide it with your hand. This will ensure to the lizard that you are nothing to be scared about.

Of course, the lizard might not take the food instantly. You can try a few times until it does. You also want to spend most of the time trying to interact with the lizard in some way. This will help the lizard recognize you.

It will make it feel safer. You can try cleaning the tank, filling the water dish or feeding to ensure that it gets used to you. 

If you feel the anole is now ready, gently pet its head. However, if it’s not then it might bite. When it approaches forward you can start handling it. Be delicate and light-handed as these lizards are very fragile.

A firm hold can easily injure your lizard. Also, see if the lizard is showing any sign of stress. If its throat is puffing, then It may bite so put it down as gently and as soon as you can.

What Size Is A Green Anole?

The Green anole is relatively smaller in size. The main difference between the male and the female is the size. The males can often grow to be 8 inches long whereas, the females often exceed 5 to 6 inches. The younglings, however, barely exceed 1 inch when they are born.

Most of the length of the green anole is due to its tail. The tail makes up half of the body length. The Snout to Vent Length (SVL) of an adult green anole lizards is merely 4 inches. The tail makes up for the other 4 inches.  

The head of the green anole is smaller than its body and is more triangular in shape. The hunter’s keen eyes are quite suited for the large eye sockets that let it hunt during the day!

The male green anole is much more heavy-bodied and muscular than the females. They’re generally very lightweight which grants them the better agility to move and climb up trees.  

On Average, How Long Do Green Anole Live For  (Lifespan)

The lifespan of these reptiles varies from 2 to 8 years. However, it is found that they seem to live longer in captivity than in the wild. In the wild, their average lifespan is about 5.5 years while in captivity they can reach up to 10 years.

This is only if proper care, diet, and nutrition are provided to them. The better the nutrition is the longer the animal will live. Generally, larger anoles live longer as they are faster and can easily gain nutrition.  

Caring For a Green Anole

Like all other lizards, you can easily house these lizards in a small tank or a terrarium. Usually, a 10-gallon tank is quite sufficient for a single anole.

However, if you choose to keep a pair, then you might want to look for something like a 15 gallon or a 20-gallon tank. This is because each anole needs sufficient space to exercise and hunt. Thus, larger tanks are much better.

If you do choose to keep more than one anoles together, do not keep two males together. They are aggressive and will fight over territory and basking spots. However, the females will generally get along quite well as long as there is enough room and basking spots.  

Also, ensure that the lid of the tank is securely and tightly fitted. This is because the increased agility of these reptiles make it easier for them to escape through tight spots.

When it comes to terrariums, these lizards prefer vertically oriented terrariums as they want taller spaces. They love climbing trees and are essentially arboreal animals. So, ensure that you have enough room for taller plants and climbing posts.

You can use acrylic vines, fake plastic plants as well as other vegetation that will allow them to climb up into the trees. Ventilation is another important aspect to ensure that there is enough circulation inside the tank. 

Ideal Temperature And Lighting

The green Anoles are diurnal animals and love basking in the sunlight. Thus, providing them with a UV lamp and high temperature is quite necessary. You can place a basking lamp or a heater at one end of the tank so that there is a thermal gradient across the tank.

This allows them to enter and exit colder or warmer areas according to their own preferences. Thus, they can easily thermoregulate their bodies. These lizards require a thermal gradient of about 75 to 80 degrees F and a basking spot of about 85-90 degrees F during the day. 

While at night, they require 65-75 degrees F of thermal gradients. Of course, you can use a basking lamp or a water heater for this purpose. However, we wouldn’t recommend that you use a white basking light during the day as the light would disturb their sleeping habits. You can use heating pads or night heat lights to achieve the desired temperatures.

Since these reptiles love basking in the sunlight, they require a full spectrum UVA/UVB light for about 10-12 hours a day. Otherwise, they could easily develop severe calcium or Vitamin D deficiency and catch diseases such as metabolic bone disease.  

Best Substrate For A Green Anole

A substrate is any substance in a lizard tank, artificial or natural, that helps the tank maintain this humidity and temperature. For Green Anoles, a substrate of peat moss, soil, and bark make for the most ideal substrates. Since they live in humid climates, they need quite a lot of substrate.

You can even add live plants to help maintain the humidity. These live plants may include Sansevierias, Ivy, Vines, orchids, philodendrons etcetera. You could also down pieces of bark or branches to act as a substrate. However, these live plants may be harder to maintain as you would end up having to care for these apart from your lizard pet. 

Try to avoid oils or resins or even scented substances such as scented power towels, pine shavings or wood shavings. Also, note that using damp or moist soil is fine. However, we do not recommend the use of loose and dry sand. These are moderate species and are found in green luscious areas. If you want to use soil, you can mix soil with bark substances and mix them with decayed leaf litter. This makes for the perfect natural substrate.

Of course, you can also use any artificial substrate such as newspaper or paper towels. These are cheaper and work just as well.

Water Requirements

Green Anoles live in moderate and green areas. Hence they mostly get their water from the rain or early-morning dew.

They lap up the water using their tongue from the leaves of plants. So, unlike other lizards that do not need much water and just generally lick water from heir moisture, the green anoles need water in a shallow dish.

Leave the dish with the water in the cold part for the terrarium so that they can easily bathe in it to cool down.

Furthermore, we also recommend that you mist the water onto plants and leaves and the walls of the terrarium. These lizards are most likely to drink and lap up water from this location.

Do not keep deep dished filled with water as they do not know how to swim and will be stuck in the water. Even if you do go for shallow ones, we recommend placing a stick or vine into it to ensure that it can easily escape.

Related Questions

Are Green Anole Lizards Poisonous? No, the green anole lizard is not poisonous. So, even if it bites you, you don’t need to worry. Simply put, an antiseptic cream and bandage the wound.

However, these lizards do carry pathogen on their skin which can be very harmful to humans. Thus, we recommend that you wash your hands every-time you touch them.

If they do bite you, you might notice swelling, however, this might be because of these pathogens.

How Fast Can A Green Anole Run? Generally, a green anole can sprint really fast. These are arboreal reptiles and hence are very fast when it comes to climbing trees or running.

In fact, we recommend all our readers to close the doors and windows when taking this lizard out. They can easily escape and won’t be easily found. They can reach speeds of up to 1.4 m/s which is quite fast for their size and weight.  

What Can Live With Green Anoles? The green anoles are not overly social animals. They mostly prefer the pleasure of their own company.

However, they are found to live in clans where a male lives with a group of females. In captivity, you can place several females with a male in the same enclosure, provided that they have enough space for basking. If you ensure that the size of the tank is large, then there is no need to worry.

However, when it comes to housing male anoles together, you might not want to do that as they can fight and injure each other.  

Are Green Anole Lizards Good For Beginners? Despite these animals being hard to handle, they are very popular pets. This might be because of the fact that like all lizards, they are much easier to keep.

They only require feeding every other day and need nothing more than a basking lamp, a misting bottle, a UV lamp, and food. Of course, you can install an automated temperature system that opens the UV light and sets the basking temperature all by itself. Thus, they make great pets for beginners who do not want to start off with harder pets.

The Green Anole Lizard make for wonderful and fascinating pets, not just for beginners but for every lizard lover. 


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