Well, not actually an alligator, but a beautiful spiny lizard. As we were packing up, we found him snoozing in a sheltered nook under my table foot at Birdy Verde. The event is in a huge tent set up in a field, and they put a carpet down over the dirt — this dude found a good spot to take refuge from all the bustle. The nights were still going down to near freezing, and who knows, maybe the carpet covered his hidey-hole.
I think he’s a Desert Spiny lizard, since he didn’t have the barred forelegs of a Clark’s. But I’m not an expert. Anyone care to weigh in?
At any rate, there he was, all 9 inches of him including tail, looking a lot like a small alligator. Tom of Tom’s Bird Feeders (and Reptile Supplies) wrangled him into a box >>, and E released him at the edge of the woods. He scuttled away, a little sluggishly because of the cool temperatures.
<< This is what the west end of an eastbound spiny lizard looks like.
(Photos E.Shock, click to enlarge, especially the middle one!)