Lizard Animal Profile
Lizards are a widespread group of squamate reptiles, with over 6,000 species, ranging across all continents except Antarctica, as well as most oceanic island chains. The group is paraphyletic as it excludes the snakes and Amphisbaenia; some lizards are more closely related to these two excluded groups than they are to other lizards. Lizards range in size from chameleons and geckos a few centimeters long to the 3-meter-long Komodo dragon.
Lizards are reptiles which means that lizards are cold blooded. Lizards tend to be more active during the night as lizards spend the day basking in the hot sun in order to warm themselves up. Lizards are therefore able to recharge their batteries during the day and can hunt with success at night.
For most species of lizard, sight is crucial both for locating prey and for communication between other lizards. Due to their extremely tuned eyesight, many species of lizard have highly acute colour vision. When communicating most lizards rely heavily on body language as lizards use specific postures, gestures and movements to define their territory, resolve any disputes, and entice mates.
Most species of lizard are harmless to humans with the main (and obvious) exception of the komodo dragon, which is the largest species of lizard in the world. Komodo dragons have been known to stalk, attack and kill humans that get in their way, primarily aided by the vast size of the komodo dragon. Some species of lizard have a venomous bite but none of these venomous species of lizard is toxic enough to really harm a human. Generally, if bitten by a venomous lizard, humans will receive a nasty and painful bite, which is normally caused by the strong jaws and bite of the lizard rather than the small amount of venom contained in it.
Scientific name: Lacertilia
Biological rank: Suborder
Higher classification: Squamata
Data from: Wikipedia
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