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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was over in Houten collecting a few retics a couple of weekends ago and came across these beauties. They were on a table of wildcaught stuff, the usual asian longtails, pygmy chameleons ect but I was amazed by their colours. I did a couple more laps of the show hoping they would sell but when I made my way back to the table they hadn't sold so I just had to have them. I had never seen anything like them. The male was like a rainbow. I was told they were Platysaurus intermedius / South African common flat rock lizards. I haven't been able to find out much info about them so far. I have been keeping them in a large desert viv with lots of bark and rocks, they have been eating well and are very active. Just wondered if there were any other keepers of these out there. I'm not one for impulse buys but I just couldn't pass up this opportunity. I would love to hear other peoples experiences with them. Picture are below:



 

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I used to have a breeding group of these about ten years ago and have a trio of P. intermedius in quarantine at the moment that will eventually go in a 24"x24"x48" high terrarium with a fake rock wall. They look just like yours (striped females, male green with an orange tail) although there are many similar species so identifying them to specific level can be difficult without knowing exact locale.

This is the basic build for their terrarium, it only has one coat of grout so far and is based on some other fake rock walls I have done for desert whip snakes, it has lots of cracks for the lizards to inhabit.



Care of these lizards is generally very easy, they make hardy pets and will breed quite readily, however I find that they remain very wary and shy and tend to flee at first sight of the keeper. Also, males will fight like mad things although they do fine in 1.2 trios. In the wild they can live in very high population densities but males will still kill each other if kept together. In the past I kept them with a group of Leiocephalus personatus, which also did well and bred regularly for me. The group I have now I intend to keep with a pair or trio of Cordylus tropidosternum once I can find some...

As you might guess from their flattened appearance these lizards inhabit narrow cracks and crevices and live on exposed rock outcroppings that they climb well. So if you can provide them lots of rock surface to climb over they will appreciate it. They also like hot temperatures, ambient temps around 28-30C with a localised hotspot up to about 45C. At night I switch off the heating entirely and they are fine at room temperature.

Like Lacertids and Agamids, they also need very high levels of UV, so get them as much as you can. Multiple Arcadia lights are likely your best bet. They also are not necessarily a desert species, they do require some humidity.

Regards,
Francis
 

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I have kept these in days gone by and can only really echo Francis wise words.

They are very shy for most of the time but have times in the day when they go mad feeding. They are usually heavily parasitized, so that will need checking and maintaining.

I would properly bake them but I would also add in a superfine mister early in the AM if I was to keep them now.

I would use as big a variety of foods sources as I could find and even hatch out calciworms into soldier flies, this seems great enrichment for them.

In my experience the males become very dominant and can be very problematic if the enclosure is too small. I would suggest 4x2x2 as a min size for a pair now in retrospect. The females can expire due to harassment in my experience.

You should provide an UVI of around 5-8 at the basking point in a measured way and as part of the light and shade method. They will self regulate as they have need then.

I would also be temped to provide the odd small flower, maybe dandelions as I have a feeling that they are grazed upon seasonally in many of the species, it certainly will not hurt.

Just my thoughts

good luck and keep us informed as to how you get on!

John
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks very much for your help both of you!
 

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Attenborough did a bit on these in one of his programmes didn't he? Maybe someone can remember better
 
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