Slow worm

Anguis fragilis

Slow worm, photo: Inga Jentson

Slow worms are not snakes, but legless lizards who grow up to 60 cm long. The sides of the body and the stomach are blackish-brown or completely black; the back is considerably brighter – brown or bronze. Adult males have unique blue spots on their backs. Slow worms can live in both dry and humid areas in broad-leaved and mixed forests and thickets as well as meadows, fields, and gardens. They are active at dusk and at night. In the daytime, they hide in rotten stumps, under fallen tree trunks or rocks, or even in anthills. They can even burrow their own holes in the forest decay.