Squamata – Snakes & lizards
Scaled reptiles, lizard and snakes, survived the Dinosaurs extinction – but will they survive humans?
The largest order in Reptiles class includes snakes, lizards, and amphisbaenians (aka worm lizards). The common characteristics shared by the species in this order are their scales and jaws. They all have horny scales that they shed periodically – either as a whole skin or in patches. For burrowing or life underground, some have lost their legs.
Their jaws are specially jointed to give them immense mobility allowing them to open their mouths extremely widely. This is most apparent in snakes, where they swallow huge prey whole.
About 100 species of this order are viviparous (give birth to live young). The burrowing nature of amphisbaenians means we still know very little about them.
Families in this order
Most serpents are here. In fact, it’s hard to draw generalizations in a family so big
Paralyzing snakes— cobras, mambas, kraits, sea snakes and allies
Some rattle and some don’t, but you better be warned because they all have a deadly slit-eyed stare, long fangs, and a lethal bite
Gigantic non-venomous snakes including anacondas and boas, known for their death-dealing coils
Good old pythons might not lurk around much longer
Smallest known snakes; adapted to digging and feed on ants and termites
Commonly known as sand snakes due to their specialized adaptations for life in sandy environments
These lizards look and move like snakes with tiny legs
Unique for their vocalizations and known for their climbing ability with specialized toe pads
Surfing to gliding, they do it all!
Endemic to South America, this family includes the southernmost reptiles on earth
A special way of expression with an equally unique view of world
The geckos with leafy feet and global reach
Small lizards found dwelling in hot sandy or rocky deserts
You can find them huddled up in rocky cervices in African deserts.
Performing acrobatic miracles on the water
Small to medium sized brightly colored terrestrial lizards
Bronze or grey, legs aren’t their forte
Brain with brawn, monitors are a delight to observe!
They only look dangerous!
Monster-like heavy footed gait, a striking appearance and a venomous defense