What is the name of a reptile that has no no legs? If you answered “snake,” you would be right, well somewhat. Why?
Did you know there’s another kind of reptile that answers the same description? They’re called legless lizards.
Legless lizard may refer to any of several groups of lizards that have independently lost limbs or reduced them to the point of being of no use in locomotion. Snakes are elongated, limbless, carnivorous reptiles of the suborder Serpentes. Like all other squamates, snakes are ectothermic, amniote vertebrates covered in overlapping scales.
What is the difference between snakes and legless lizards? The answer is – pretty much everything! For instance, there are more than 100 classifications of snake. On the other hand, there are only around ten to twenty classifications of legless lizards. The difference between these two groups of animals is in their typical appearance. Here are some of the key points that separate the two categories of reptiles.
Although most lizards and snakes do look alike, they actually have very different needs and characteristics, and it can be pretty difficult to tell them apart. First of all, both snakes and lizards are considered to be carnivores. A snake will indeed hunt and kill prey; however, most will eat other types of small animals, bugs, worms, even birds and insects as well. Lizards, on the other hand, will not primarily prey on small animals but will eat just about anything. Snakes will generally hold the larger fish, while lizards will generally hang around the edges of ponds and other bodies of water.
Legless lizards didn’t just kick off their legs and slither away one day. Over millions of years, the animals developed smaller and smaller limbs until, eventually, their legs and arms disappeared. This kind of change, which is called evolution, often happens over long periods of time.
Everything about a reptile, or an animal, from the color of it’s eye to the large length of its gorgeous tail, is concealed in the reptile or animal’s genes. And animals that are better able to find mates and food, and hide from predators, are more likely to present their strong genes to their offspring.
hen you look at a snake, its body will appear much larger than when you look at an average-sized lizard. Also, if you hold a snake up to the light, you’ll probably see that it glows, indicating that its eyes contain deep colors. On the other hand, when you look at a lizard, its coloration will remain more subtle, making it hard to tell whether or not it is a snake. Finally, both snakes and lizards have prickly looking spines that protrude from their body, but the bottom of a snake will not have these prickly ends.
Legless lizards are often distinguishable from snakes on the basis of one or more of the following characteristics: possessing eyelids, possessing external ear openings, lack of broad belly scales, notched rather than forked tongue, having two more-or-less-equal lungs, and/or having a very long tail (while snakes have a long body and short tail).
Legless lizards can blink. Snakes don’t have eyelids but instead protect their eyes with see-through membranes. Legless lizards also have tiny ear holes on either side of the head, while snakes lack external ears. Snakes have relatively short tails, says Connor. But legless lizards are mostly tail, with the part of the animal that comes after the internal organs making up as much as two-thirds of a legless lizard’s length.