Stowaway lizard's 2,000-mile trip from Kos to Bridgend

Green Balkan lizard Image copyright RSPCA Cymru

A lizard has packed up and left a sunny Greek island to make a new life for himself in Wales.

The bright green Balkan lizard stowed away in a holidaymaker's suitcase, leaving behind the 26C (79F) temperatures of Kos in favour of less-sunny Bridgend.

The lizard was found and safely confined to the family's utility room until the RSPCA was able to rescue him.

He now lives at a specialist centre in Pembrokeshire.

The lizard, about 20cm long and not dangerous, had shed his tail - a common defence mechanism - but is in an otherwise good condition.

Image copyright RSPCA Cymru

RSPCA inspector Nic de Celis said: "After a relaxing break in Kos, the last thing returning holidaymakers would have expected to find amid their belongings was this stunning Balkan green lizard.

"We're really grateful to the callers who contacted us, and safely confined the lizard in their utility room before we came and made the rescue.

"This was some ordeal for the reptile."

Russ and Ginny Spenceley, who run Silent World in Haverfordwest and have taken in the lizard, said in a statement: "Fortunately, this lizard is doing well. He's quite friendly, went straight into a vivarium with us and is eating locusts directly from our hands

"We look forward to providing a good home for this lizard, who will support our educational work in the future, raising awareness of reptile wildlife."

RSPCA Cymru reminded people to treat any unidentified animal with caution - and reminded holidaymakers to thoroughly check their suitcases before heading home.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites