Endemic to New Zealand. The tuatara is considered the most un-specialized living amniote; the brain and mode of locomotion resemble those of amphibians and the heart is more primitive than that of any other reptile. The lungs have a single chamber and lack bronchi. Both species are sexually dimorphic, males being larger. Adult S. punctatus males measure 61 cm (24 in) in length and females 45 cm (18 in). Males weigh up to 1 kg (2.2 lb), and females up to 0.5 kg (1.1 lb). Brother’s Island tuatara are slightly smaller, weighing up to 660 g (1.3 lb).
The Tuatara’s greenish brown color matches its environment, and can change over its lifetime. Tuatara shed their skin at least once per year as adults, and three or four times a year as juveniles. Tuatara sexes differ in more than size. The spiny crest on a tuatara’s back, made of triangular, soft folds of skin, is larger in males, and can be stiffened for display. The male abdomen is narrower than the female’s. Tuatara reproduce very slowly, taking 10 to 20 years to reach sexual maturity. It then takes between 12 and 15 months from copulation to hatching. This means reproduction occurs at two- to five-year intervals, the slowest in any reptile. Wild tuatara are known to be still reproducing at about 60 years of age. “Henry”, a male tuatara at Southland Museum in Invercargill, New Zealand, became a father on 23 January 2009, at the age of 111. If you haven’t read about Tuatara they are incredibly fascinating.
The print size is 17 inches wide by 11 inches tall. Poster cost is $20.00 + $5.50 shipping (domestic) USPS. Print is sent in a sturdy mailing tube with tracking information (mailing costs increase is for the addition of tracking info due to previous posters lost in shipping). Multiple orders incur a slight shipping cost increase. Please contact us if you plan to order more than 3 posters.
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