The “Flaring of the Dewlap”
A male anole’s foreboding display of impending sex
OK, you’re right. It’s not exactly anole sex, but it is anole courtship – anole foreplay if you will. Known in the herpetology world as the “Flaring of the Dewlap”, (a rather garish expansion of rose-colored throat-skin) this display by male anoles (Anolis carolinesis) is performed towards the female anole mate of his choosing as an ominous notification of impending sex and is usually accompanied by a series of “push-ups” intended to, I must assume, display his strength, agility and athletic prowess – apparently much desired characteristics for desiring male suitors. This flaring matinee is obviously meant to be viewed by a reciprocating female as a scintillating exhibition of his erotic worthiness and endowment. However, to the female this is not always the case.
This rather amusing audition of male anole burlesque more often than not (actually, a vast majority of the time) sends the horrified female fleeing for cover in the nearest branches, leaves or anywhere she can camouflage herself out of harm’s way. While cowering away in hiding after (in her opinion) such a crude and obtrusive sleazy gesture, she will veil herself and stay obscured from the male’s sight until the apparent sexual threat has waned.
In time, after searching unsuccessfully for his intended, the male will concede that his quest for sexual gratification with the Chosen One is lost and he will begin searching for another potential mate.
That is, until He spots Her again.