Varanus caerulivirens ZIEGLER, BÖHME & PHILIPP 1999
Turquois Monitor
V. carulivirens
courtesy of H. DeLisle
Varanus caerulivirens from Halmahera Islands, Indonesia, belongs to the subgenera Euprepiosaurus. Animals of this species can grow up to about 110 cm in total length. The tail is about 1.6 times as long as SVT.
The ground color is greyish-brown to black with a light to turquoise patter. The coloration of the underside is light yellowish to turquoise with a blackish pattern. A dark temporal stripe, consisting of grey-turquoise scales, framed on both sides by yellowish to light turquoise scales. The back has generally up to 20 transverse rows of ocelli between the limbs, which become more and more inconspicuous posteriorly. The tail usually has broad greyish-turquoise and blackish crossbands on the last two thirds.
Throat and lower part of the neck is mostly yellowish, with more or less dark spots or with few dark transverse rows.

Distribution, habitat and behavior


Varanus caerulivirens is only known from one locality on the eastcoast of Halmahera, Moluccan Islands, Indonesia, where it might occur sympatrically with its relatives V. indicus and V. yuwonoi. Latest research has shown, that V. caerulivirens is often seen along waterways in western Halamhera. Also V. caerulivirens might occur on the island of Morotai (DELISLE pers. comm.).
Reinvestigation of long-time preserved material from museum collections revealed further specimens of V. caerulivirens previously assigned to V. indicus. Among them is the only specimen with precise locality data for Halmahera: a juvenile collected in the year 1895 at Patani on the eastern coast of Halmahera (ZIEGLER, BÖHME & PHILIPP 1999).
Till now no field data on the habitat and life history of this species are available. LEMM (1998) reported a very rare second blue-tailed mangrove-type monitor besides V. yuwonoi from Halmahera, which he said was "extremely flighty and aggressive". In captivity, V. caerulivirens are excellent climbers and are also very well adapted to semi-aquatic habitats (PHILIPP, ZIEGLER & BÖHME 1999).
The diet of this species mainly consists of scorpions, crustaceans, grasshoppers and anurans, which were analysed on preserved specimen.

Keeping and breeding
No data are published on the captive husbandry of this monitor species yet.