Lace Monitor (Varanus varius)
The lace monitor, or tree goanna, is Australia's second-largest lizard and one of the largest lizards on Earth. The monitor is usually a dark colour, ranging from a dark blue-black to black and has a scattering of white, cream or yellow scales forming vibrant markings on its body. The tail is longer than the body and head together and can measure from around 1.5 metres to 2 metres. The Lace Monitor can be found along the coast, ranges, slopes and plains of eastern and south eastern Australia, from the south eastern corner of South Australia to Cape York Peninsula. It is a large arboreal lizard which feeds on insects, reptiles, small mammals and nestling birds. It also feeds on carrion. The monitor often forages along the ground but will climb a tree when disturbed, spiralling upwards when pursued, keeping on the opposite side of the tree from the observer.