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Species : 


1- The emperor flat lizard or imperial flat lizard (Platysaurus imperator) :

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


The emperor flat lizard or imperial flat lizard (Platysaurus imperator) is a species of lizard in the Cordylidae family.

Conservation status :




Vulnerable (IUCN 3.1)[1]

Scientific classification:







Species:P. imperator

Binomial name :

Platysaurus imperator
Broadley 1962[2]

Description :


Females and juveniles are black and have three light cream stripes, which are yellow on the head, running down the lizard's back. The middle stripe is narrow and broken near the rear, and the tail is straw-colored. The throat is white, while the belly is mainly black. Adult males have a yellow head and a dark red body with several large, whitish spots anteriorly. These pale spots are yellowish near the tail. The limbs are black, while the throat is dark red with a thick black collar. The chest is reddish or yellowish while the tail is orange to light yellow below. Like the females and juveniles, the belly is black.


This Platysaurus is the largest of its kind, with males reaching 146 mm. The common flat lizard, Platysaurus intermedius, is closely related, but the Emperor Flat Lizard is easily distinguishable by its large size and striking colors.

Geography :


The emperor flat lizard's range is northeastern Zimbabwe and the adjacent part of Mozambique. Its habitat is mesic savanna. These lizards will often live on top of boulders on hills.


Habits :


A large male emperor flat lizard and several attendant females command the tops of huge boulders on hills, where they feed on beetles, grubs, and ants. Emperor flat lizards have been documented living up to fourteen years.


Breeding :


Clutches of two eggs are laid in the summer. These eggs are large, with dimensions of 27 mm long by 12 mm wide.


Conservation :


Emperor flat lizards are threatened by over-collecting for the pet trade.

For the external links , refrences  click here to read the full wikipedia article 

Care Articles :

Platysaurus imperator – BROADLEY, 1962

courtesy to : 

Platysaurus imperator: Close-up of adult male from Mozambique • Nahaufnahme eines adulten Wildfangmännchens aus Mosambik
© Lutz Obelgönner

Platysaurus imperator: Close-up of adult female from Mozambique • Nahaufnahme eines adulten Wildfangweibchens aus Mosambik
© Lutz Obelgönner

Imperial Flat Lizard / Emperor Flat Lizard


Named after Latin imperator = emperor because of its great size and magnificent colouration. The largest member of the flat lizards. Females and juveniles are black and show yellow stripes on the back, males get a yellow or orange back and a striking orange tail. The most dominant male in a group has the brightest colours. A dominant male and several females usually command the tops of boulders, gneiss or other hills. Other males (so-called 'floaters') come by and may pair with the females, but are driven out of the territory in the end. 
These fast runners are very hardy, easy to keep, but unfortunately very shy. You need some time to get them used to your presence and show themselves. Controlled feeding with tweezers helps to reduce timidity. It's a pity that there is absolutely no usable literature about the husbandry of this genus, a good sign for negligence in the hobby.



Adult Size 
males up to 32 cm, females up to 27 cm

about 15 years

north-east Zimbabwe, Mozambique

rocky areas in savannah regions, even in higher elevations


Captive Care 
At least 120x60x60 cm WDH. Animals make use of height if you provide structures. Offer lots of rocks and crevices, keep at least one crevice humid, possibly by stuffing sphaghnum moss in between rock structures. Temperature 22–26 °C, sunny spot 40 °C, night temperature 18–20 °C, humidity 50–60 %. Daylight fluorescent lamps or LEDs, HQL or HQI spot, water bowl, feeding bowl for worms etc. Ground sand/clay mix or sod. Outdoor husbandry possible, but you need to protect them from rain and offer additional spot.


arthropods and larvae, small vertebrates, always add minerals and vitamins (e. g. Herpetal Complete)


Reproduction and Rearing :

Room given, even larger groups are possible. Lots of retreats and structures in cage help. Cooler period (2 months 15–16 °C) helpful. Females lay several clutches of only two large eggs (27x12 mm) in summer in a humid spot between rocks. Unfortunately I always found the eggs too late when they were already dry. Raise young ones separately and with lots of UV light.


Kaiserplattechse / giant platform :


type named after the Latin imperator  = emperor / ruler because of their size and appealing coloring. The largest type of flat-belt steels. Females and young animals are black with yellow stripes on the back, adult males have a bright yellow or orange back and tail coloring. The dominant male of a group has the brightest colors. Typically, one dominant male and several females inhabit a rock or a rock group. Other males (so-called floaters / sprinters) roam around and mate when they are not immediately expelled from the territory.
The animals are fast paced, actually easy to keep, but very timid. You have to get used to your own vision. Controlled feeding with tweezers can help with habituation. Unfortunately there is no useful literature on the whole species at all, a sign that they are neglected in terraristics. 


Protected status 

Males to 32 cm, females to 27 cm 

Life expectancy 
about 15 years 

north-east Zimbabwe, Mozambique 

rocky landmarks in the savannah, even in higher locations 



At least 120x60x60 cm BTH. The animals use the height when appropriate structures are offered. Many rocks and columns offer, at least one of them keep moist, B. By the introduction of sphagnum. Temperature 22-26 ° C, sun spot 40 ° C, at night 18-20 ° C, humidity 50-60%. Daylight fluorescent tubes or LEDs, HQL or HQI spot, water bowl, food bowl for worms, etc. Substrate Sand-clay mix or roll lawn. Free parking is possible, but animals must be protected against rain and need additional radiators. 


invertebrate and larvae, small vertebrate animals, always with vitamins and minerals (eg Herpetal Complete) 

breeding and rearing
If large enough space is also possible. Sufficient hideouts and structure in the basin help. Cooler (2 months at 15-16 ° C) are helpful. Females lay several eggs with only two eggs (27x12 mm) in the summer on a damp place between rocks. Unfortunately, I have so far found all the veil too late. Hare animals separately and with a lot of UV light.


Literature / Literature 
Branch, B. (1998). Field Guid to the Snakes and other Reptiles of Southern Africa. Struik, Capetown. 
Branch, B. (2001). A Photographic Guide to the Snakes and other Reptiles of Southern Africa. Struik, Capetown. 
Broadley, D.G.  (1978). A revision of the genus Platysaurus A. Smith. Occ. Papers Nat. Museum south. Rhodesia, B, 6 (4): 129-185.

Platysaurus imperator : Subadult male • Subadult male
© Lutz Obelgönner

Platysaurus imperator : Dominant male of a group • Dominant male of a group
© Lutz Obelgönner

Platysaurus imperator : Adult female from Mozambique • Adult female from Mozambique
© Lutz Obelgönner

Video : 

African Flat Rock Lizards



             1- Genus Cordylus  - girdled or Armadillo lizard

             2- Genus Chamaesaura - Grass lizards

             3- Genus Platysaurus - Flat lizards

             4- Genus Pseudocordylus   


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