My friends the Desert Spiny Lizards of the Sonoran Desert

Over the past few years I have been bonding with some of the wildlife in the backyard home in Tucson, Arizona. Living in the Sonoran desert is an incredible opportunity to be close with many species of wildlife that are rarely seen elsewhere as well as a huge number of migratory birds.

Two of my closest “wild” friends are these two lizards. I named the female Mystique and the male I simply call Sir or Mr.

Bonded desert spiny lizards. She is clowning around and during the photo shoot she ran over and jumped on top of him. They do love each other.

Male desert spiny lizard with prickly pear cactus and a rainbow overhead.

Female desert spiny lizard with prickly pear cactus and a rainbow.


Male and female desert spiny lizards. A bonded couple who live in my backyard.

Male desert spiny lizard posing for the camera on a cholla cacti skeleton with strawberry cactus blooming in the background.

Many ask about what we are chatting about, what they are saying to me when we hang out and stuff like that. It really is similar to hanging out with a best friend where you don’t have to be chatting all the time, often times just being in each others company is enough. Yes, we do chat too of course and have had some very interesting conversations, but certainly not every encounter. We see each other several times a day and they will seek me out when I am in the yard doing photography and other activities.

Desert spiny lizards watching the sunset from a cholla cacti skeleton with prickly pear fruit and pads in the background.


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