Dragon lizards


organism5Dragon lizards are diurnal lizards found from the rainforest to the desert. Tobias worked on them for a few years as a postdoc in Mats Olsson’s group in Wollongong (now Sydney). Our work focused on the mallee dragon, a small – and very fast – lizard that lives in sandy areas with spinifex grass. Most individuals only live for one year but females produce multiple clutches per year, which makes it an attractive system to study life history evolution.


Dragon lizards are also interesting for their evolutionarily labile sex determining systems, which prompted us to propose an adaptive explanation for evolutionary transitions between GSD and TSD based on sex-specific fitness returns of hatching date. Dragon lizards continue to be studied with respect to sex determination by others, but primarily from a mechanistic perspective.