An elderly couple from Queensland are receiving hospital treatment after being attacked by a Lace Monitor Lizard, Varinus varus, while trying to save their Dog. The incident happened in a park at Shute Harbour, near Proserpine, at about 3.30 on Thursday 15 August 2019, when the Lizard, known locally as a Goanna, attacked the Long-haired Jack Russel Terrier, named Lily. The Dog owner, Reg Eggers, 72, tried to drive the Lizard off he was in turn attacked, receiving bites to the arms and leg, which caused him to lose a great deal of blood. When his wife tried to intervene she was also bitten. The couple were airlifted to a hospital for treatment, both they and the Dog survived.
A Lace Monitor, Varinus varus, near Mission Beach in Queensland in 2011. Donald Hobern/Flikr/Wikimedia Commons.
Lace Monitors are large Varanid Lizards, reaching about 2.5 m in length, which will take a wide variety of prey, including other Lizards, Birds and Mammals. Cats and small Dogs fall comfortably within the size range of their typical prey, and are often attacked; Humans are typically outside their size range and are generally left alone, but the Lizards can respond very aggressively if provoked, and have powerful bites and extremely sharp teeth.
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