Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Basingstoke residents on lookout for lizard on loose

Lizard on a wall Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption RSPCA officers were called to help capture the reptile but it disappeared

A metre-long lizard is on the loose on a Hampshire housing estate.

The reptile - thought to be a type of monitor lizard - has been seen scaling the rooftops in the Norn Hill area of Basingstoke in the last two weeks.

It is not known where the creature has come from but a spokesman from the RSPCA warned it needed capturing quickly before the weather turned cold.

Anyone who spots the lizard is asked not to try and catch it but to call the RSPCA.

The charity's exotics officer, Phil Hamilton, said: "If the lizard is indeed a monitor lizard, they can grow very large and require a substantial enclosure and an experienced keeper.

"A lizard such as this would not survive for very long in our climate, especially if the weather worsens and the temperature drops, so it's really important we find this lizard as soon as possible."

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