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Thunder lizards
A thunder lizard in Dragonflight
Classification Dinosaur
Racial leader(s) IconSmall ThunderLizard Akunda (Loa)
Homeworld Azeroth
Environment Deserts, jungles, forests
Area(s) Dragon Isles, Kalimdor, Zandalar
Organization(s) Solitary
Thunder lizard2

The older thunder lizard model.

Thunder lizards are large, heavy-set beasts that prefer canyons, plains, jungles, and forests. When in combat, they are capable of shooting lightning from their mouth at distance and dole out harsh headbutts at close range. Thunder lizards come in a wide variety of colors, including black, blue, gray, pink, and red. They can be found in the Barrens, Desolace, Durotar, Stonetalon Mountains, Vol'dun and the Waking Shores.

Unlike most reptiles, thunder lizards have a herd mentality akin to that of cattle, so most of them tend to stay together. Their minds are usually focused on one of three things: eating, drinking, or sleeping. In addition to running very fast, those activities are generally all that occupy a thunder lizard's mind, except during mating season. They are as such either docile or stampeding, not having much of a middle ground between them. Thunder lizards are grazing animals, feeding on grass and other plants.[1][2] They also enjoy fish if they get the opportunity, the thunder lizards of the dragon isles particularly like piranhas.[3] They like to make their beddings out of grass.[4]

It is said that some rare kodos are bound to the spirits of the sky and storm. Thus, the tauren have legends about those they call lightning lizards, thunder lizards, and storm walkers. Whether or not these behemoths actually have supernatural powers remains to be seen.[5]

Vol'dun was once a lush jungle and the home of many great and powerful thunder lizards. Now their bones rest around the Temple of Akunda.[6]

The Maruuk Centaur make thunder lizard tenders, which residual electricity tingles the tongue.[7]

Fighting thunder lizards[]

Attacks which interrupt the spellcasting of NPCs such as the rogue's Ability kick [Kick], the shaman's Spell nature earthshock [Earth Shock], and the warrior's Ability warrior shieldbash [Shield Bash] are also effective against these lizards. When you see the lightning building up in its mouth, hit it with the counter to casting used by your class and you won't have to worry about getting hit by any lightning bolts... you'll only have to worry about being trampled, gored, or crushed by a huge and irate reptile.

Thunder Lizards are hostile, whereas kodos are neutral, and will not aggro unless attacked.

Known species[]


Temple of Akunda

Temple of Akunda dedicated to a thunder lizard loa.



As a battle pet[]

As a mount[]

As a hunter pet[]

Main article: Scalehide

Thunder lizards are tamable by hunters as part of the Scalehide family, along with ankylodons, mushan, kodos and stegodons.

In Warcraft III[]

WC3RoC-logo This section concerns content related to Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos or its expansion The Frozen Throne.

In Warcraft III.

In Warcraft III, thunder lizards appeared in a variety of forms, including storm wyrms and lightning lizards. Rather than shooting lightning from their horns, they shot it from their mouths. The salamanders and thunder lizards looked very similar, indicating that they are, perhaps, related somehow, as one or the other was a simple reskin of the first. Thunder Ridge holds a massive amount of thunder lizards, and have already appeared in The Frozen Throne bonus campaign (starring Rexxar). In Warcraft III, Thunder Ridge thunder lizards were green, but in World of Warcraft they are red-skinned.

Eastern Kingdoms thunder lizards appeared in the missions The Culling and The Crossing.

In the RPG[]

Icon-RPG This section contains information from the Warcraft RPG which is considered non-canon.

Thunder lizard

The great reptile walks on all fours, the ground shaking with every step. It has a mottled green hide with a ridge running along its back.

The tauren have tales of legendary kodo beasts, gifted by the spirits of the sky and bound to the power of the storm. These legendary beasts include the thunder lizards, lightning lizards, and powerful storm wyrms. Tauren consider it a significant life event to encounter one of these creatures - an omen, though for good or ill is not always apparent.

While similarities exist, the thunder lizard’s relationship to kodo beasts is distant. These animals are aggressive, particularly while in herds. Keeping a healthy distance from a thunder lizard will likely allow one to avoid trouble.

Thunder lizards prefer to keep to a tight home range, with predictable movements. In rocky or hilly terrain, thunder lizards find grottos or vales to bed in for the night. Pairs or herds form a small number of these beds throughout their range, returning to whichever one is closer as they graze. These nest sites may have equipment and treasure left from would-be attackers.[10]

Salamanders, cousins to the thunder lizards, are a rare and exotic offshoot of the race.[11]

Lightning lizard[]

An occasional spark fires from the peat reptile’s eyes as it trundles its massive form along the plains. Is hide is mottled green and brown with splotches Of blue! and a great ridge runs along its back. Lightning lizards look much like thunder lizards, although they are of superior size. They also Possess abilities beyond what their smaller cousins enjoy. Sparks dance from the great lizard’s eyes! and its bellow carries over tremendous distances.[12]

Storm wyrm[]

Storm wyrms are powerful cousins to thunder and lightning lizards. Some tauren believe that mighty sky spirits dwell in the most powerful of earthly creatures, the fusion of sky and earth taking the shape of storm wyrms. These beasts are clearly magical, as wind and mist play about them at all times. Storm wyrms are more powerful and more intelligent than their brethren. They have the same special attacks and special qualities as lightning lizards. These magical beasts may make use of some equipment, particularly magic rings.[13]

Notes and trivia[]

  • Aegwynn used to have a pet thunder lizard called Scavell. She also said that the word "kodo" used to refer to thunder lizards in the past,[14] thought that might have been an error.
  • Thunder Lizards are capable of generating electricity even some time after death. Drowned Thunder Lizards in Thunder Ridge continue to regularly emit bursts of electricity strong enough stun any nearby humanoids, long after their deaths.
  • Thunder Lizard tail also appears to hold some innate electricity-generating properties, even after death. If the tail is cut off a dead Thunder Lizard, it is possible to use it to send out a blast of electricity strong enough instantly kill smaller creatures nearby.[15]


This article or section includes speculation, observations or opinions possibly supported by lore or by Blizzard officials. It should not be taken as representing official lore.
  • The thunder lizard is likely related to the Stegodon, or are simply another name for thunder lizards, as the stegodon Gruff and Thunderstomp Stegodons are capable of generating electricity like thunder lizards. On top of that, they both thrive in jungles, while stegodons inhabit the jungle of Un'Goro Crater, thunder lizards are known to have thrived within the jungles of Zandalar and forests of Durotar.
    • They also share the same model.


Patch changes[]