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Reptiles of Belize. 4 March 2009. Crocodiles – Order Crocodylia. Last living group of Archosauria (dinosaurs) More closely related to birds than any other living group of reptiles Reflective eyeshine 23 living species Family Crocodylidae American Crocodile Morelet’s Crocodile.

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Reptiles of Belize


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    1. Reptiles of Belize 4 March 2009

    2. Crocodiles – Order Crocodylia • Last living group of Archosauria (dinosaurs) • More closely related to birds than any other living group of reptiles • Reflective eyeshine • 23 living species • Family Crocodylidae • American Crocodile • Morelet’s Crocodile

    3. American Crocodile • Crocodylus acutus • Slender, elongatesnout • Well-developedosteoderms • 4-5 m • Not American Alligator -> http://www.naturephoto-cz.eu/pic/sevcik/crocodylus-acutus--crocodylus-acutus-6.jpg http://mattcastille.com/me/wp-content/uploads/2007/09/gex-american-alligator.jpg.jpg

    4. Morelet’s Crocodile • Crocodylus moreletii • 2-3 m • Some mottled withyellow and black • Most drab grey • Fish-eaters http://imagecache2.allposters.com/images/pic/PTGPOD/OSGIP-00000444-001~Morelets-Crocodile-Single-Mexico-Posters.jpg Class photo

    5. Snakes – Order Squamata • Close evolutionary relationship with lizards • Limbs absent (although some vestigal girdles) • Scale over eye, no eyelid • Blind Snakes – Family Typhlopidae • Thread Snakes – Family Leptotyphlopidae • Boas – Family Boidae • Colubrids – Family Colubridae • Coral Snakes – Family Elapidae • Pit Vipers – Family Vipiridae

    6. Blind Snakes - Typhlopidae • Occur throughout tropics • 9 species on mainland Americas • Small (usually < 35 cm, ~13-14 in) • Left lung absent • Vestigial pelvis present • Oviparous

    7. Yucatan Blind Snake • Typhlops microstomus • This is the commonblind snake http://www.fs.fed.us/r8/caribbean/wildlife-facts/2003/wildlife-facts_images_2003/culebrita_ciega.jpg

    8. Thread Snakes - Leptotyphlopidae • Burrowing/subterranean • Vestigial left lung • Small (< 14 cm, ~5.5 in) • Rudimentary/vestigial eyes • Curving rostral scale • Short, spine-like tail

    9. Goudot’s Thread Snake • Leptotyphlops goudotii • Only seen afterheavy rains • This is the Texasthread snake http://www.nps.gov/amis/naturescience/images/Texas-Thread-Snake.jpg

    10. Boas - Boidae • Highly variable size • Africa, Europe, Asia, N. and S. Americas • Vertical pupil • Vestigial pelvic girdle • Subdue prey with constriction • Suffocate, not crush • Viviparous (unlike pythons)

    11. Boa constrictor • Boa constrictor • Rarely exceeds 300 cm(~10 ft) • 25-30 dark dorsalsaddles • Excellent climbers http://www.snakeeducation.com/snakes/photos/Boa%20Constrictor%20Styles%20is%20his%20name%20Aug%2006.JPG

    12. Annulated Boa • Corallus annulatus • Slender • Approx. 172 cm(~5.5 ft) • 45-50 dark annuliwith pink center http://pro.corbis.com/images/IH116695.jpg?size=67&uid=%7B7B416C1B-EADC-4EE1-BDA8-4459CF7AB2F1%7D

    13. Colubrids - Colubridae • No trace of pelvis • Non-functional left lung • Burrowers, tree-dwellers, aquatic or terrestrial • Mostly diurnal • Mostly oviparous, some viviparous

    14. Black Mussurana • Clelia clelia • Large, robust body • (200 cm, ~6.5 ft) • Shiny black http://www.1-costaricalink.com/costa_rica_f auna/wildlife_images/mussurana.jpg

    15. Brown Racer • Dryadophis melanolomus • A.k.a. Middle American Smooth-scaled Racer • 150 cm (~5 ft) http://www.rarimages.com/BelizeImages/Snakes/tn_Lizard-eater(Dryadophis_melanolomus)1468.jpg

    16. Indigo Snake • Drymarchoncorais • 3rd largest snake • Boa constrictor • Tiger treesnake http://www.hamhunter.com/images/Indigo%20snake%20in%20hands.jpg

    17. Speckled Racer • Drymobius margaritiferus • Turquoise, orangeblack • 120 cm (~4 ft) • Feeds on frogs http://www.placenciabreeze.com/New_Breeze/2006_Archives/November_06/Sanke.jpg

    18. Blunt-headed Tree Snake • Imantodes cenchoa • Very slender • 100 cm (~3 ft) • Feeds on anoles,lizards, etc. http://64.17.184.245/images/Imantodescenchoa015.JPG

    19. Green Tree Snake • Leptophis ahaetulla • A.k.a. Green Parrot Snake • Slender body • Elongate head • Feeds on tree frogs http://images.encarta.msn.com/xrefmedia/sharemed/targets/images/pho/t038/T038941A.jpg

    20. Green-headed Tree Snake • Leptophis mexicanus • A.k.a. Bronze-backed Parrot Snake • U-shaped ventral scales • 120 cm (~4 ft) • Feeds on frogs http://mexico-herps.com/Tamaulipas/Leptophis-mexicanus-septentrionalis.jpg

    21. Neotropical Vine Snake • Oxybelis aeneus • Very slender • Pointed snout • 120 cm (~4 ft) • “Lingual lure” Photos: S. Collins

    22. Green Vine Snake • Oxybelis fulgidus • Slender, elongate body • Black line through eye • Feeds on birds, anoles, rodents http://www.marietta.edu/~biol/biomes/images/troprain/green_vine_snake.jpg

    23. Cat-eyed Snake • Leptodiera frenata • Head large • Eyes with vertical pupil • 20-40 blotches/saddles • Feeds on frogs http://gallery.photo.net/photo/3649941-md.jpg

    24. Tropical Rat Snake • Spilotes pullatus • Narrow head • Small eyes • 120 cm (~4 ft) • Feeds on rodents http://www.ryanphotographic.com/Tiger%20rat%20snake.jpg

    25. Red Coffee Snake • Ninia sebae • Small head • Yellow collar • 35 cm (~14 in) • Hood when threatened http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3202/2773435337_5936cf11b4.jpg?v=1219050676

    26. Neckband Snake • Scaphiodontophis annulatus • “Half-coral snake” • Tail comprises ~50%of animal • 90 cm (~3 ft) • Banding pattern variable • ~1/3 of snake http://eligreenbaum.iss.utep.edu/Scaphio.jpg

    27. Tropical Kingsnake • Lampropeltis triangulum • “Tropical Milksnake” • 150 cm (~5 ft) • Rings • Red-black-yellow-black-red http://pro.corbis.com/images/FN002161.jpg?size=67&uid=%7B7D48ABCA-F7F1-44BA-9F80-2744917CEEAB%7D

    28. Coral Snakes - Elapidae • HOT Snakes • Africa, Asia, Southern USA, Central America • Rear-fanged • Family contains • Cobras • Kraits (sea snakes) • Mambas • Oviparous • Feed heavily on other snakes

    29. Mayan Coral Snake • Micrurus diastema • “Variable Coral Snake” • 80 cm (~2.5 ft) • Bands • Black-yellow-red-yellow-black • Snake-eater http://artofmanliness.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/07/coral-snake.jpg

    30. Central American Coral Snake • Micrurus nigrocinctus • 100 cm (~3 ft) • Rings • Black-yellow-red-yellow-black • Yellow may be reduced or absent • Feeds mostly on small snakes and lizards http://www.travellog.com/guatemala/ikbolay/images/06MICRU.JPG

    31. Vipers - Viperidae • HOT Snakes • Worldwide distribution • All New-World vipers are “pit” vipers • Heat sensing pit between nares and eyes • Able to sense small changes in thermal environment • Pelvis absent, left lung absent • Most viper bites occur from carelessness

    32. Eyelash Pitviper • Bothriechis schlegelii • Raises scales over eyes • Vertical pupils • Feeds on rodents,bats, frogs • 80 cm (2.5 ft) www.kostich.com/yellow_eyelash_viper.htm A http://www.bio.ilstu.edu/juliano/Costa%20rica%20pics%2005/PC140132%20eyelash%20viper%20yellow%202.JPG

    33. Fer-de-lance • Bothrops asper • A.k.a. Yellow lipsor Yellow beard • Large head • Vertical pupils • Stout body • 200 cm (6.5 ft) http://farm1.static.flickr.com/47/155232353_25f62340a6.jpg

    34. Tropical Rattlesnake • Crotalus durissus • Rattle at end of tail • 170 cm (5.5 ft) • New segment added to tail at each molt • May molt multiple timesper year when young http://www.tc.umn.edu/~gambl007/BrazilPics/Crotalus_durissus_2.JPG

    35. Jumping Viper • Atropoides nummifer • Vertical pupils • Stout body • Blotches may formzig-zag pattern • Feeds on rodents • 80 cm (2.5 ft) http://consejo.bz/belize/images/animals/snakes/jumping_viper.jpg

    36. Rainforest Hognosed Viper • Porthidium nasutum • Stout-bodied • Snout turned up • Vertical pupils • 45 cm (1.5 ft) http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3242/2693469840_588515520a.jpg?v=0

    37. Lizards – Order Squamata • 3800 living species • Bones of jaw more secure than in snakes • “3rd eye” – pineal is a light sensitive disc • Geckos – Family Gekkonidae • Iguanas – Family Iguanidae • Basilisks – Family Corytophanidae • Anoles – Family Polychrotidae • Spiny Lizards – Family Phrynosomatidae • Skinks – Family Scincidae • Whiptails – Family Teiidae

    38. Geckos – Gekkonidae • Largest family of lizards • 80 genera • 700 species • Some commonly found running on walls/in houses • Eye covered with transparent scale • Except Yucatan banded gecko

    39. Yucatan Banded Gecko • Coleonyx elegans • Only species with eyelid • 80-90 mm • Skin translucent on belly • Can see some internalorgans • Digits lack adhesive pads http://www.tc.umn.edu/~gambl007/geckos/coleonyx_elegans2.jpg

    40. Yellowbelly Gecko • Phyllodactylus tuberculosus • “Leaf-toed gecko” • Lacking info http://mexico-herps.com/Sauria/Phyllodactylus_tuberculatus_saxatilis_2.jpg

    41. Dwarf Gecko • Sphaerodactylus glaucus • “Spotted bark gecko” • 45-55 mm • Robust limbs • Digits with friction pads http://www.uta.edu/biology/campbell/guatemala/images/Sphaerodactylus_glaucus.JPG

    42. Central American Smooth Gecko • Thecadactylus rapicaudus • “Turnip-tailed gecko” • Largest species ofnative gecko in area • 90-100 mm • Thick tail, constrictedat base http://www.guaquira.com/images/0BIO-DIV-Images/Reptilia/Lotzkat/Thecadactylus-rapicauda-a.jpg

    43. Tokay Gecko • Gekko gecko • Invasive species! • Native to Indian subcontinentand Indonesia • Second largest gecko species • 30 cm • Powerful jaws http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Tokay_Gecko.jpg

    44. Iguanas – Iguanidae • Southwest U.S.A. to South America • Galapagos, Caribbean • Mid-dorsal spine-like scales • Prominent fold of skin below chin • Heavily hunted by humans as protein source • “Bamboo Chicken”

    45. Green Iguana • Iguana igauna • Largest lizardin area • Fold of skin longitudinal • Green with blackbands (juv., females) Photos: T. Saxe

    46. Spiny-tailed Iguana • Ctenosaura similis • “Black Iguana” • Fold of skin transverse • 90 cm • Short, muscularlimbs • Heavily muscledjaw in males http://www.naturephoto-cz.eu/pic/sevcik/ctenosaura-similis--ctenosaura-similis.jpg

    47. Basilisks – Corytophanidae • Mexico through C. Am. to northern S. Am. • Crests, casques or helmets • On back of head • Extremely long tails • Diurnal

    48. Striped Basilisk • Basiliscus vittatus • Can run on hindlegs only • 55-60 cm • Stripes http://www.vivanatura.org/Basiliscus_vittatus_3.jpg

    49. Anoles - Polychrotidae • Dewlap under chin • Mating and territorial displays • Usually brightly colored • Usually drab brown/grey • Diurnal • Tree climbers

    50. Big-headed Anole • Anolis capito/Norops capito • “Long-legged Anole” • 230-285 mm • Relatively small dewlap • Longest legs of any anolein the area • Short, chucky head http://www.repti.net/reptile_picture/Anolis+capito_66459.jpg