Added 2 May 2006.

A look at the

Genus Norops - Anole Lizards


Genus Norops - Anole Lizards

The genus Norops was created in the late 80s after a large number of Anolis species were reclassified. It includes the very popular and commonly offered Brown Anole (A. sagrei) as well as a few other species kept in captivity. Those Norops species at least occasionally seen in the pet trade are marked with an asterisk (*): those which are common, with two (**). For the full genus listing, visit the EMBL page.

More recently, the validity of this genus has been questioned, and its species reassigned back to the genus Anolis. Nevertheless we have left this page as it is for reference purposes.

NOTES: "Hispaniola" here refers to Haiti and Western Dominica. Unless otherwise stated, all islands are in the Caribbean region.

Scientific Name

Common Name





N. ahli

Escambray Blue-Eyed Anole

Cuba (Sierra de Trinidad)


This is a brown anole with very obscure red striping on the back and a black patch on the neck [Heselhaus & Schmidt]. Orange-red dewlap edged in yellow: no other information so far available.

N. allogus

Spanish Flag Anole



This is a forest dweller, being found on tree trunks or the ground. Coloration is a dorsal red-brown with a yellow reticulum: dewlap is yellow with 3-4 vertical stripes [Heselhaus & Schmidt, Perez i Gorgoy]. There are three distinct crests along the back and tail. See the CAD entry for a picture and more details. The EMBL database entry also has a link to pictures.

N. altae





N. alvarazdelteroi





N. amplisquamosus





N. anisolepis





N. annectens

Black-Throated Stout Anole

S Haiti, SW Dominican Republic



N. antonii

Statia Bank Tree Anole

Lesser Antilles (St. Eustatius, St. Christopher, Nevis)



N. aquaticus


Antigua, Bermuda



N. auratus





N. baccatus





N. barkeri





A. benedikti

Costa Rica, Panama

Described in 2011: see Reptile Database entry for details.

N. bicaorum





A. biporcatus

Tropical Green Anole

S Mexico to N South America


Also similar in appearance to A. carolinensis, but with a heavier head and heavier ridges over the eyes and a grey to dark olive meshwork of varying design over the uniform green colour [Walls]. Dewlap is pink with bright blue centre.

N. birama





N. bitectus





N. bocourtii


Venezuela (Isla Margarita and Morro Fondeadero), Columbia (La Guajira peninsula)


Arboreal species. Males are larger. See the Fläschendräger article for records of this anole in captivity.

N. bombiceps





N. bouvierii





N. breedlovei





N. bremeri





N. capito

Tropical Short-Headed Anole

SE Mexico to Panama


One of the few anole species where the female may be larger than the male. Overall colour is usually brown: males may be mottled or streaked, but females can also have a dark brown mottling and a white middorsal stripe and black dorsolateral stripes [Walls].

N. carpenteri





N. chrysolepis





N. cobanensis





N. compressicauda





N. concolor





N. confusus





N. conspersus





N. crassulus





N. cumingii





N. cupreus





N. cuprinus





N. cusuco





N. cymbops





N. damulus





N. delafuentei





N. dollfusianus





N. duellmani





N. exsul





N. forbesi

Forbes' Anole




N. fortunensis

? Anole




N. fungosus





N. fuscoauratus





N. gadovii





N. garmani*

Jamaican Giant Anole

Jamaica, Cayman Islands: Florida (introduced)


N. garmani is bright green in colour with an orange dewlap with an olive-yellow edge. There is a series of upwards-reaching subtle green bands on the sides.

N. gibbiceps

Hook Anole

Guyana, N Venezuela



N. gracilipes

St Vincent Tree Anole

St Vincent (Lesser Antilles)



N. grahami





N. granuliceps





N. guafe





N. guazuma





N. haguei





N. hobartsmithi





N. homolechis





N. humilis





N. ibague





N. imias





N. intermedius





N. isthmicus





N. johnmeyeri





N. jubar





N. kemptoni





N. kreutzi





N. laeviventris





N. lemniscatus





N. lemurinus





N. limifrons





N. lineatopus

Stripefoot Anole




N. lineatus

Striped Anole




N. liogaster





N. lionotus





N. loveridgei





N. lynchi





N. macrinii





N. macrolepis





N. macrophallus





N. maculiventris





N. magnaphallus

W Panama

N. mariarum





N. matudai





N. medemi





N. megapholidotus





N. meridionalis





N. mestrei





N. microlepidotus





N. microlepis





N. milleri





N. muralla





N. naufragus





N. nebuloides





N. nebulosus

Clouded Anole

Mexico (Sinaloa)


It is an attractive blue-grey colour. De Vosjoli has a picture.

N. nitens





N. notopholis





N. ocelloscapularis





N. omiltemanus





N. onca


Venezuela (Isla Margarita and Morro Fondeadero), Columbia (La Guajira peninsula)


This species differs from other anoles in having no adhesive lamallae on its toes but has keeled scales instead. For this reason it was once placed in a separate, monotypic genus, Tropiodactylus. [Fläschendräger]. It is a ground dweller but will climb into bushes.

N. opalinus





N. ophiolepis





N. ortonii





N. pachypus





N. pandoensis





N. parvicirculatus





N. pentaprion





N. petersii





N. pijolense





N. pinchoti





N. poecilopus





N. polylepis





N. polyrhachis





N. purpurgularis





N. pygmaeus





N. quadriocellifer





N. quercorum





N. reconditus





N. rhombifer





N. rivalis





N. roatanensis





N. rodriguezi





N. rubribarbaris





N. rubribarbus





N. sagrei**

(Cuban) Brown Anole

Mexico (Yucatan), Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Cuba, Jamaica, Bahamas, Isla de la Juventud, Cayman Islands, Isla de la Bahia; Florida, Georgia, Hawaii (introduced)


Widely spread throughout the Carribean, with several subspecies. Although the EMBL entry now considers this a Norops species, this is unlikely to catch on at the popular level at least. Brown Anoles are more terrestrial than Green Anoles, one reason why similar-sized specimens of the two species may be kept together in community vivaria. Indeed, Heselhaus & Schmidt suggest that the Brown Anole can be kept with most similar-sized "green" species. It should be noted however that males are extremely aggressive towards each other. The red dewlap of the male is edged in a paler colour and is spotted. Males are generally larger than females, have proportionately larger heads and a nuchal crest [de Vosjoli]. See below for details of the differentiation between the various subspecies. The Florida population is an interesting case: originally it was colonised by the two subspecies A. s. sagrei and A. s. ordinatus, but these have become so intergraded with each other that distinction between the two in this part of the world is no longer possible. Joachim Suntrup has an interesting page on captive care and breeding of Brown Anoles.

N. s. greyi*


Central Cuba

Crimson dewlap with white spotting: similar red marking around the eyes.

N. s. luteosignifer*


Cayman Brac


N. s. mayensis*




N. s. nelsoni*


Swan Island (off Yucatan, Mexico)


N. s. ordinatus*

Bahaman Brown Anole


Dewlap is yellow-orange with a few largeish red markings.

N. s. sagrei*

Cuban (Brown) Anole

Cuba, Yucatan coast (Mexico), Belize: Florida, Hawaii (introduced).

Nominate subspecies, and probably the main invader of US territories.

N. s. scripti*



Recorded by Heselhaus & Schmidt: otherwise I have been unable to find any further information. Similar in appearance to A. s. greyi but lacks the eye markings.

N. salvini





N. scapularis





N. schiedei





N. schmidti





N. sericeus

Blue-Spot-/Silky Anole

Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Honduras


Yellow dewlap with bright blue spot.

N. s. sericeus



N. s. sallaei



N. s. ustus



N. serranoi





N. simmonsi





N. sminthus





N. subocularis





N. sulcifrons





N. taylori





N. tolimensis





N. townsendi





N. trachyderma





N. tropidogaster





N. tropidolepis





N. tropidonotus

Greater Scaly Anole

Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua


May still often be referred to as Anolis tropidonotus. Click here for a picture. This may be a variable species in colour, since de Vosjoli's photograph shows two rather grey lizards with subtle banding.

N. uniformis





N. utilensis





N. utowanae





N. valencienni





N. vicarius





N. villai





N. vittigerus





N. vociferans





N. wampuensis





N. wermuthi





N. woodi





N. yoroensis





N. zeus






The information above was culled from a number of sources, including Mattison:

Lizards of the World, Mattison

Keeping and Breeding Lizards, Mattison

The General Care and Maintenance of Green Anoles, Philippe de Vosjoli, Herpetocultural Library 1992. Probably the best introduction to keeping not just Green Anoles but also many other anole species. De Vosjoli also includes community setups and a selection of non-anole species that could be compatible with these lizards. Recommended.

Carribean Anoles, Heselhaus and Schmidt, TFH. Another excellent book, by two German authors who have personally visited some of the islands where the lizards are distributed. This gives the basic description and captive requirements of most of the Anolis species and is somewhat more comprehensive than some TFH books. Recommended.

See also Index of Iguanid Related Articles for articles on Anolis species by Jerry G Walls and Axel Flaschendräger, both of which were invaluable.


Caribbean Anole Database - excellent site by Lluis Perez i Gorgoy in Spanish and English giving information on these lizards. Very good explanation of the different habitats, the islands and the different "types" - "twig-dwarves" and other loose groupings. Recommended.

Anole Pictures - superb Anglo-German site containing well-organised pictures of many different Anolis and kin. Please respect the copyright on these shots! As used by the EMBL reptile database.

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