Found in a make-up bag on return from Barbados holiday!
A lizard has been handed in with an unusual back story... a visitor had been holidaying in Barbados and had no idea what was travelling with her souvenirs and belongings back to Manchester Airport.
On her return home, she had a shock when opening her make-up bag; staring back at her was a Barbados Anole Lizard (Anolis Extremus), now affectionately known to staff as Lizzie. Lizzie survived the 8 hour, 4,159 mile flight and is now settling in to life at the Wildlife Centre. The Barbados Anole is a species of Anole Lizard that is native to Barbados, an island-nation in the Caribbean. Originally endemic to Barbados, it has since spread to the mainland.
Zoo Curator and Centre Manager, Andrew Reeve, has the following advice if you find yourself in a similar situation “If a member of the public finds an animal that has accidentally travelled over with them from abroad, they can either call the Tropical Butterfly House on 01909 569 416, the Department for Environment Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) on 03459 33 55 77, or the RSPCA’s cruelty and advice line on 0300 1234 999. This will mean that the animal can be properly identified and cared for. Correct identification is important as some tropical species eat insects whilst others have mainly fruit based diets. Lizards, like other reptiles, have specialist needs including controlled temperature and humidity. This lizard would certainly not survive UK temperatures. To release a non-native into the wild is an offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.”
You can see Lizzie in the Butterfly House oustide the Nocturnal Room, she's in an enclosure with her new friends; the Green Anoles.