Fin Lizard

It stands on one leg with its neck and tail fins outstretched when cooling itself.

Fin lizard head

The neck fins are full of blood vessels that lie near the surface and serve to keep the animal cool.

Fin lizard running

The fin lizard can travel at speeds up to 4 kilometers per hour.

The fin lizard, Velusaurus bipod, is a small, bipedal iguanian lizard, with no front limbs, from North American deserts.

Lizards and other reptiles do not have the sophisticated mechanisms that mammals and birds have for regulating body temperature. Their temperature is entirely dependent on the surroundings. Several desert reptiles of the Posthomic have, however, developed rudimentary devices for keeping themselves cool. The fin lizard, for instance, has a system of erectile fins and dewlaps on its neck and tail which it raises into the wind when its body becomes too hot. The heat is transferred through the fins via the bloodstream into the air. When cooling itself, the lizard typically balances on one leg while keeping the other off the hot desert surface to get maximum benefit from the system.

Predators of the fin lizard include long-legged quails.

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.