In order to access the endangered species status of any organism it is essential to know its past and present distribution. The Coast Lizard, Phrynosoma coronatum , was presumed to be threatened by habitat destruction due to human activities. I used historical literature and museum records to access past, and lizard survey teams to access current range and population numbers of P. coronatum in the five counties of Southern California between 1989-1991.
The species occurs from sea level to 8,000’ (2440m) in a wide variety of habitats. Fieldwork and questionnaires increased by a third the number of locations (from 672 to 1148) where horned lizards are known to occur. There are (post 1985) records of the species throughout its range and from all habitats. The lizard occured in about 75% of its original range, and of that, more than 50% is in public lands where the lizard is protected or could be protected by effective management and enforcement.