Common Name

Scientific Name


Photo by Lynn Chamberlain
Photo Copyright Lynn Chamberlain

The common sideblotched lizard, Uta stansburiana, is a common lizard found throughout much of the western United States and northern Mexico. It is one of the most abundant lizards in the semi-arid and arid regions of its range, where it inhabits areas of sandy or rocky soil containing scattered brush or trees. This lizard is primarily a ground dweller that may remain active year-round in warm southern regions.

Females in northern areas of the species' range lay one to three clutches of one to five eggs from March to August, whereas females in warmer southern areas have a longer breeding season and consequently may lay additional clutches containing more eggs. The common sideblotched lizard eats mainly small invertebrates, but adult males may cannibalize young lizards.

The back of the common sideblotched lizard is usually brownish in color, and the sides of the lizard often contain a characteristic dark blotch behind the front legs.


  • Biotics Database. 2005. Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, NatureServe, and the network of Natural Heritage Programs and Conservation Data Centers.

  • Stebbins, R. C. 1985. A field guide to western reptiles and amphibians. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston. 336 pp.