How to Draw a Tuatara

In this quick tutorial you'll learn how to draw a Tuatara in 9 easy steps - great for kids and novice artists.

The images above represent how your finished drawing is going to look and the steps involved.

Below are the individual steps - you can click on each one for a High Resolution printable PDF version.

At the bottom you can read some interesting facts about the Tuatara.

Make sure you also check out any of the hundreds of drawing tutorials grouped by category.

How to Draw a Tuatara - Step-by-Step Tutorial

Step 1: Start your Tuatara by drawing the head, which a round circular shape, and leave a space open on the left.

Step 2: Next, add an eye by drawing two small circles and a mouth by adding a small line. These lizards have special eyes that can see in both light and dark. They also do not have external ears, but can still hear.

Step 3: To draw the first claw, make an oval, but draw a few sharp points for the claws on the end.

Step 4: Draw two long lines from the back of the head and the leg to make the body.

Step 5: Now, add the hind leg by making a macaroni shape with more pointed toes.

Step 6: Now, add two curvy lines that meet at a point to draw the tail.

Step 7: Add a large rock under the Tuatara by making a rounded rectangle and a few lines inside for detail.

Step 8: Draw a lot of upside down triangles along the back to make the scales. This is a small crest that runs all the way down their back.

Step 9: Now add a few straight lines in the tail and a few curved lines in the body for the pattern. You can use grey, green, dark red for the color of the Tuatara.

Interesting Facts about Tuataras

Tuataras are reptiles they live in New Zealand and like live on cliff sides. A Tuatara can be grey, green, dark red. They are thought to be closer related to snakes, than lizards. They measure to about 40-60 centimeters and weighs about 2lbs. Males have a crest that run all the way down their back. Females have it to, but it isn’t as noticeable. Tuataras lay eggs every 4 years. They eat bird eggs, earthworms, frogs, and lizards. Tuataras like to hunt after dark they like mild to warm weather. They are most active when the temperature is between 61-70 degrees Fahrenheit.

Did you know?

  • In 1991 and 1992, the Stanley, Mercury, and Cuvier Islands moved the Tuataras to protect them from a rat invasion. Once the rats were killed off, there reintroduced the reptile to its home.
  • It is possible for a Tuatara to age to 100 years old!
  • Tuataras have special eyes that can see well in both the light and the dark.
  • It takes 9-13 years for a Tuatara to get ready for mating season.
  • Tuataras don’t have outside ears! They can still hear, but everything is inside their skull.

Activity: Make some coloring pages with a Tuatara drawing. Set out the art supplies and let the students color it as they wish. When they are finished, then wad up some tissue paper and use glue to create a raised crest along the Tuatara’s back.