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Latest Reptile Stories

Crocs Use Lures To Catch Birds
2013-12-05 13:03:19

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Alternately lethargic and viciously violent, crocodilians are not often thought of as cunning, duplicitous predators. However, a new study in the journal Ethology, Ecology and Evolution has found that these massive reptiles sometimes use sticks and twigs to lure in unsuspecting birds, particularly during nest-building season. "Our research provides a surprising insight into previously unrecognized complexity of extinct reptile...

Snake Eyes: Threats Cause Change In Blood Flow To The Eyes In Snakes
2013-11-05 04:13:07

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Snakes can optimize their vision when they perceive a threat by controlling the blood flow to their eyes, according to a new study from the University of Waterloo. The coachwhip snake's visual blood flow patterns change depending on what is in its environment, according to Kevin van Doorn, PhD, from the School of Optometry & Vision Science, and Professor Jacob Sivak, from the Faculty of  Science. “Each species' perception...

Oldest Lizard Fossil Found
2013-09-25 12:21:00

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online An international team of researchers has discovered the oldest known lizard-like fossil near Vellberg, Germany. The find offers new insights into the evolution of reptiles including lizards, snakes and tuatara, according to a newly published report in BMC Evolutionary Biology. The ancient reptile’s fossilized jaws indicate that these reptiles were alive during the Middle Triassic period some 240 million years ago. “The Middle...

New Fossil Proto-Mammal Found
2013-08-08 10:01:35

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A newly discovered skeleton has evolutionary biologists adding new details to the story of mammalian evolution. The fossilized skeleton belongs to a proto-mammal that lived 165 million years ago in northeast China and had hair well before the emergence of true mammals, according to a report of the find that appeared in the journal Nature. For years, paleontologists' only evidence of the species was a few fossilized...

Were Dinosaurs Warm Blooded?
2013-07-19 10:55:04

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Modern reptiles are cold-blooded, and many researchers maintain dinosaurs were as well. New research from the University of Adelaide, however, suggests dinosaurs may have been warm-blooded like birds and mammals. Professor Roger Seymour of UA's School of Earth and Environmental Sciences argues cold-blooded dinosaurs would have been unable to develop the necessary muscle power to prey on other animals and dominate...

First Meal Important To Young Viviparous Lizards
2013-07-04 04:49:07

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online We have all heard of 'formative years' that can influence a person's view of the world and, consequently, their behavior - but a new study published in the journal Cell Biology has found for certain lizards their very first meal can have lasting impacts on everything from their future range to agility. "A mere detail in life can make all the difference for the fate of individuals," said co-author Manuel Massot of Universite Pierre et...

Unique Dinosaur Roamed The Desert Of Supercontinent Pangea
2013-06-25 09:03:28

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Pangaea, a single supercontinent existing from 300-200 million years ago, dominated the Earth during the Permian era with animal and plant life dispersed broadly across the land. This disbursement is documented by identical fossil species found on multiple modern continents. A new study, from the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology, supports the idea that Pangaea had an isolated desert at the center of the supercontinent with unique...

The Late Jim 'Lizard King' Morrison Gets Giant Extinct Reptile Named After Him
2013-06-05 14:16:05

Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The late rocker Jim Morrison may have been known as “the Lizard King” during his heyday in the late-1960s, but another creature that lived 40 million years ago is being hailed as the “king of lizards.” The lizard, measuring some six feet long and weighing upwards of 60 pounds, was a giant plant-eating reptile that competed with mammals of the time in the hot tropical forests of Southeast Asia. Perhaps it is...

Turtles Began Living in Shells Earlier Than Previously Thought
2013-05-30 16:35:52

Peter Suciu for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online While there are several species that have shells, the turtle is the only animal to form such a shell on the outside of its body through a fusion of modified ribs, vertebrae and shoulder girdle bone. This makes the turtle´s shell a unique modification, one that has fascinated and confounded biologists for more than two centuries. How and when it originated has remained mostly conjecture. However, a team of researchers led...

Biologists Create Squamate Reptile Family Tree
2013-05-09 18:14:59

Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Those feeling as if there had been something missing in this world can rest easily tonight: A George Washington University (GWU) biologist and a team of researchers have finally finished the first large-scale evolutionary tree of every known squamate in the world. Squamates are reptiles such as snakes and larger lizards. This project had been underway since 2008, but according to GWU the last five years have been particularly...


Latest Reptile Reference Libraries

0_8f023dda3e8dc6d6beae9a3c48deec69
2007-04-15 20:58:50

The Brown Basilisk or Striped Basilisk, Basiliscus vittatus, is a species of lizard native to Central America, but have been introduced into the wild in the U.S. state of Florida. They are also called the common basilisk and, the "Jesus Lizard" because when it flees from predators it runs very fast and can even run on top of water. Basilisks actually have large hind feet with flaps of skin between each toe. The fact that they move quickly across the water, aided by their web-like feet,...

41_494fd8b7a6b410724559fb7ea5a8f7c8
2007-02-12 21:53:31

The Diamondback Terrapin, Malaclemys terrapin, is a species of turtle native to the brackish coastal swamps of the eastern and southern United States. They are found from as far north as Cape Cod, Massachusetts to as far south as Corpus Christi, Texas. The species is named for the diamond pattern on top of its shell, but the pattern and coloration varies greatly by species. The coloring of the shell can vary from browns to grays, and their body color can be gray, brown, yellow, or white....

41_a0daff1f5ebb65f11d0909cf4bbc58a5
2007-01-23 14:56:02

The Spectacled Caiman, Caiman crocodilus, is a crocodilian reptile found in much of Central and South America. It lives in a range of lowland wetland and river habitat and can tolerate salt water as well as fresh. Due to this adaptable behavior, it is the most common species of caiman. Males of this species are between 6 and 8.2 feet long, while females are smaller, usually around 4 and a half feet long. The species' common name comes from the bony ridge between the eyes, which give the...

41_93e4f388ab06b6a0e833d14535bd3020
2007-01-02 11:35:55

The Perentie is the largest monitor lizard native to Australia. They are found west of the Great Dividing Range in the arid regions of Australia. They are not a common sight and can usually escape detection before it has a chance to be seen. An adult Perentie can grow up to 8 feet long although its average size is 5.5 to 6.5 feet long. It is likely the third largest lizard on earth, after the Komodo Dragon, and the Water Monitor. Crocodile Monitors rival the Perentie in being the third...

36_5237f625c5a54ce7651ce0b01e5f94dc
2005-06-15 17:26:29

The Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis) is the largest lizard in the world, growing to a length of about 10 feet (3 meters) and weighing between 175 to 310 lb (80 and 140 kg). It is a member of the monitor lizard family, Varanidae. Dragons have keen senses and are considered among the most intelligent living reptiles. They are carnivorous, hunting live prey with a stealthy approach followed by a sudden short charge (they can run briefly at speeds up to 20 km/h). They have a strong bite...

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Word of the Day
bodacious
  • Remarkable; prodigious.
  • Audacious; gutsy.
  • Completely; extremely.
  • Audaciously; boldly.
  • Impressively great in size; enormous; extraordinary.
This word is probably from the dialectal 'boldacious,' a blend of 'bold' and 'audacious.'
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