Added 7 July 2013.

A look at the Family Agamidae


Bay Islands Forest Lizard


A genus similar in appearance to Gonyocephalus (and indeed formerly a member of that genus): however, in Coryphophylax the tail is easily broken and regenerates. For a long time just the one species was known, although it was suspected that it was a complex of two: finally in 2012 a further species was identified. Like Gonocephalus these are arboreal agamids.

I have not so far seen this species offered in the pet trade, which may be due to its restricted range. See Manthey and Schuster for husbandry suggestions.

Species Name

Common Name





C. brevicaudus

Short-Tailed Bay Island Forest Lizard

India (Andaman Islands)

Described in 2012: see Reptile Database entry for details.

C. subcristatus 

Short-Crested Bay Islands Forest Lizard, Nicobar Forest Dragon 

India (Andaman and Nicobar Islands) 

(m) SVL 10cm, TL 37cm 

Scalation: 7-8 supralabials, 7-8 infralabials; upper head scales unequal in size, strongly keeled; few enlarged tubercles on back of head; gular sac very small, gular scales smaller than ventrals, keeled; nuchal crest not continuous with dorsal crest, formed of triangular spines, of which largest is slightly smaller than diameter of eye-opening, inserted on slight fold of the skin; dorsal crest a serrated ridge; dorsal scales small, keeled, keels pointing upwards and backwards, with few irregularly scattered enlarged scales; ventral scales rather small, strongly keeled; upper surfaces of limbs with subequal keeled scales. Other: snout longer than diameter of orbit; canthus rostralis and supraciliary edge sharp; tympanum nearly as large as eye-opening; 3rd and 4th fingers equal. Tail: strongly compressed, with serrated upper edge and keeled scales which are larger ventrally. Coloration: juveniles and females uniformly greenish or with black markings; males with variable reticulate markings or dark brown vertical stripes on flanks with yellow or red spaces between. Reproduction: no details currently available [SOURCES: Boulenger, Manthey & Schuster]