Four-lined Ameiva

(Ameiva quadrilineata)


Four-lined Ameiva IUCN LEAST CONCERN (LC)


Facts about this animal

Like all members of this genus they are comparably large lizards living in the lowlands and active during daytime. However with its length of about 9 cm, A. quadrilineata is the smalles of all the Ameivas. They spend almost all of their waking hours poking nervously about for a great variety of insects and skittering away at the slightest disturbance. The head is rather narrow with a pointed snout and conspicuous gular fold. The tail is long and thin. Their characteristics are the four light lines, two on each side of body They seem to be reproductively active throughout the year and the females lay 1 - 2 eggs per clutch.

Did you know?
that these lizards will also feed on amphipods like Beach Fleas (Talorchestia species), which are salty, marine creatures (approximately twice as salty as the lizards' body fluids). The four-striped Ameiva possesses however a nasal salt gland for excreting this excess ingested salt, which responds to NaCl loading by increasing excretion of Na+,,K+,, and Cl–.


Name (Scientific) Ameiva quadrilineata
Name (English) Four-lined Ameiva
Name (German) Vierstreifenameive
Name (Spanish) Ameiva de cuatro líneas
CITES Status Not listed
CMS Status Not listed



Photo Copyright by
John Sullivan/Ribbit Photography



Range Western Panama, Costa Rica, and Southeastern Nicaragua
Habitat Its habitat is the humid tropical forest, but its habitat is sunnier and warmer than those occupied by the other two Ameiva. Thus it can be found as well in the forest as in open, sunny areas where it can be found exploring around on the ground for insects (in an area of open, low vegetation cover adjacent to bare soil) or sunning itself on rocks. It's not uncommon to see four-lined ameiva foraging about at the edges of Costa Rican beaches.
Wild population Unknown
Zoo population None reported to ISIS (2007)

In the Zoo

Four-lined Ameiva


How this animal should be transported

For air transport, Container Note 41 of the IATA Live Animals Regulations should be followed.


Find this animal on ZooLex


Photo Copyright by
John Sullivan/Ribbit Photography

Why do zoos keep this animal

The four-lined ameiva is hardly ever kept by zoos outside the species' range. It is a relatively common sight in the wild, and could be displayed in exhibits themed on lowland forests of Central America.