The effects of global warming underway over the next few decades will be most affected by lizards, according to a new study conducted by Nottingham Trent University and the University of Lincoln.
In particular, it will be the lizards that produce live offspring compared to those that lay their eggs to suffer even more these effects over the next sixty years. Scientists have in fact studied the effects of temperature rises on various species of viviparous or oviparous lizards.
The results obtained, among other things, confirm the emerging theory regarding the fact that viviparous reproduction, which involves giving birth to live offspring, has evolved in lizards to colonize colder climates, such as those at altitudes or higher latitudes. Evolution allowed the mother lizards to “hold” the eggs in their bodies so that it was the mother’s own body that acted as an incubator.
This same adaptation, which allowed a greater diffusion of the population, is dragging it towards extinction according to Daniel Pincheira-Donoso, one of the authors of the study. The reproduction of live offspring is not very effective in warmer environments and if the reptiles develop at an evolutionary level this ability then remains “trapped” in the coldest places and can no longer easily adapt to the heat.
Among other things, the same scholars have ascertained that the species of viviparous lizards are moving towards the tops of the mountains or however at higher altitudes at speeds significantly greater than the species that lay eggs, another confirmation of this interesting theory.