Tuatara Wooden Puzzle with Habitat Image Tray
Tuatara means “Peaks on the back”. The Tuatara has an ancient lineage that goes back to the dinosaurs and are the only survivor from the order of reptiles from this period, some 200 million years ago. Tuatara mature slowly and can live to over 100 years old. The Tuatara eats insects, beetles, spiders, birds eggs, frogs and small reptiles and mammals. Males are larger than females.
The Tuatara typically inhabits coastal forest or low scrub generally preferring relatively open areas with little ground cover. Tuatara are largely, but not exclusively, nocturnal. Tuatara live in burrows and regularly bask during daylight hours at the mouth of their burrows and are more active at night foraging in and around their burrows and interacting with other Tuatara. While capable of digging their own burrows, Tuatara often use those of burrow nesting seabirds. These settings provide Tuatara with protection and food (excreta from the birds supply a large insect community and the Tuatara prey on the diverse array of arthropods and smaller lizards that use this resource). Tuatara are territorial, and males aggressively defend their territory by posturing, displaying, and fighting if necessary.