A baby lizard climbs out of her egg, buried beneath the sands of the tropical rain forest. She used a special tooth to break out of the hard shell of her egg. Now she must explore her surroundings.
Little Lizard is a green iguana lizard, but her sharp claws and the scales along her back make her look a lot like a tiny dragon. In the rain forest, the sunlight filters through the leafy treetops and bounces off her green skin. She shines like a jewel.
Other lizards crawl around in the sand. They are Little Lizard's brothers and sisters. Soon the forest floor is covered with baby lizards. They all want to explore their new world.
A curious toucan sits on a branch high above the ground. It watches the lizards crawl across the sand, looking for food. Baby lizards are not raised by a mother or father lizard. Young lizards are born knowing what they have to do to survive in the rain forest. Knowing how to survive without being told is called instinct.
Little Lizard is still small enough to fit in a human hand. She could grow up to be six feet long when she's older, though!
Little Lizard is dazzled by all of the interesting sounds of the rain forest. She hears the water falling, and she hears the birds calling to each other through the forest.
Little Lizard flicks her long tongue and bobs her head. Lizards have amazing tongues! They use their tongues to zap their food, clean their eyes, smell, and even scare away enemies. In front of Little Lizard, an army of ants carries leaves across the sandy floor of the forest.
Now Little Lizard is hungry. She leads a group of lizards across a trail of leaves. A quick movement catches her eye. Gulp! Little Lizard extends her long tongue and snaps up her first meal: a tasty termite. She eats a few more termites before moving on.
The lizards climb up a big tree near the river. The green leaves hide them well.
Some lizards are called chameleons. This means that their skin changes colors to match their surroundings. Then they stay hidden from enemies. Little Lizard is not a chameleon. Her skin is always green to match the green leaves of the rainforest.
A dark shadow passes over the lizards' hiding spot on the mangrove tree. It is a hawk on the hunt. The hawk flies over the branch that Little Lizard is resting on.
She naturally knows just what she has to do. Her claws let go of the tree branch. Little Lizard is falling! She hits the water with a splash.
To find out what happens next in "Little Lizard," go to the next page.