Chameleons in Andalucia

Chameleon on our gate

Chameleon on our gate

There are about 180 species of chameleon, most of which are in Africa and Madagascar, but in Europe we only have the common chameleon which can be found in the coastal provinces of Andalucia – Almeria, Malaga, Cadiz and Huelva. The most likely time of year to spot one is summer when they tend to wander in search of mates or a place to nest. Last summer we found one in the road outside our house and yesterday we saw one clinging on to the gate of our house. In both cases the chameleons crossed over from the scrubby, unpopulated hillside across the road from us.

Taking the chameleon to safety

Taking the chameleon to safety

We coaxed the chameleon off our gate and released it at the end of our road into the Parque Natural. Many of these beautiful lizards are killed on the roads in Andalucia in summer so please keep an eye out for them. They do not move very quickly.

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About Margaret Merry

I grew up in Falmouth, Cornwall, England where, after leaving Falmouth High School, I spent a year at Falmouth School of Art. Then followed three years at Hornsey College of Art in London where I obtained a Diploma in Art and Design. I then spent a post-graduate year at the West of England College of Art in Bristol where I gained an Art Teacher?s Diploma and a Certificate in Education of the University of Bristol. I lived and worked in Truro for over 30 years and became one of Cornwall's most popular artists. My paintings have been exhibited in New York, Tokyo, Paris and London and have been bought by collectors from all over the world. I have published 4 books which became local bestsellers - 'The Natural History of a Westcountry City', 'Margaret Merry's Cornish Garden Sketchbook', 'Sea & Sail' and 'Tidal Reaches'. In 2002 I moved to Spain and now live in the little coastal village of Las Negras in the heart of the Parque Natural de Cabo de Gata. I now get my inspiration from the dramatic scenery of Andalucia and its old cities, towns and villages which I usually capture in watercolour. I also enjoy figurative art, particularly nudes and dancers. For these paintings I use artists' soft pastels. I have written and illustrated 3 children's books - The Wise Old Boar, The Lonely Digger and The Adventure of Princess The Pony - which have been published in the USA.
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2 Responses to Chameleons in Andalucia

  1. Alec Fry says:

    I quite agree about caring for these lovely creatures. Some references cast doubt on their ability to change colour, but I can definitely confirm that they do. In our previous garden near Algarrobo, one very green one emerged from an ivy covered bank and was very grey by the time it had crossed our path! Alec.

  2. jeune01 says:

    Lovely creatures – we have similar – both in the garden and the ‘bush’ down the road…..lovely to see Margaret.

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