The life cycle of a lizard ranges from 3 to 50 years. Longevity depends on the species in question.
Lizards found in temperate climates, such as fence lizards, tend to have shorter lifespans. Their smaller size also makes them easier prey. Other larger lizards can have significantly longer lifespans than their smaller counterparts. For example, a Gila monster can live as long as 20 years in the wild and 30 in captivity. However, a Gila monster is better equipped for personal defense, as it has the capacity to spew a neurotoxin that is similar to the toxin produced by a coral snake. This defense mechanism helps to defend against would-be predators, which in turn adds years to the average lifespan as an aggregate species.