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Reptiles

Reptiles are cold-blooded vertebrates that have scales layered over their skin. Common reptiles include lizards, snakes, alligators and crocodiles.

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Hognose Snakes Play Dead Like Opossums

These snakes are some of the best reptilian actors you'll ever meet, but don't let the act fool you.

'Flying' Snakes Are Actually Legless Gliders

To some, the thought of snakes flying through the air is the scariest thought imaginable, but, as we'll explain, flying snakes don't actually fly, they "fall with style."

From the Rhino to the Corn: 10 Facts From the Wide World of Rat Snakes

Despite their name, rat snakes don't eat just rodents. This huge family of snakes, which lives on every continent except Antarctica, also eats lizards and amphibians.

Don't Mess With the Black Mamba, One of the Deadliest Snakes Alive

One of the most venomous snakes alive, the black mamba warns off encroachment with a fearsome hiss and the ominous flaring of its two cobra-like neck flaps.

Sea Snakes Can Be More Venomous Than Rattlesnakes

There are more than 50 species of snakes that live in the seas. Some are super venomous and they can zip through the water with ease.

Alligator Snapping Turtles Lure Prey With Wriggling Worm-like Tongue Appendage

The prehistoric-looking alligator snapping turtle is the largest freshwater turtle in North America and has a bite that, it's said, can snap a wooden broom handle in half.

Brush Up on Parseltongue to Greet the New Salazar Slytherin Snake

A new species of green pit viper found in India has been named after the founder of Harry Potter's Slytherin house.

What's the Difference Between a Tortoise and a Turtle?

They both have prehistoric looking shells and squatty legs, but how are they different?

The Watery World of the Monster Anaconda

The green anaconda is the largest of the anaconda species, which makes it arguably the biggest snake in the world.

Why a Spotted Python Should Totally Be Your Next Pet

From its small size to its docile nature and long life span, the spotted python fills the bill as a great family pet. Our writer should know, he's got one.

Corn Snakes Are Perfect Pets For Reptile Enthusiasts

These modern rat snakes have an affinity for barns (and the rodents that live in them). But the myriad of colors makes them a reptile hobbyist's dream.

Coral Snakes: Brightly Banded and Highly Venomous

These colorful snakes are found all over the world and are highly venomous, so the best strategy is to avoid them.

Water Moccasin, Cottonmouth: Different Names, Same Venomous Snake

Cottonmouth snakes are often called water moccasins and are one of only four venomous snakes found in North America.

Copperhead Snakes: Not Always Lethal, But Best Left Alone

Though a copperhead will bite if disturbed, and it is venomous, its bite is rarely fatal.

The Harmless Garter Snake Is Your Garden's Best Friend

Garter snakes are harmless, very common and beneficially feed on slugs, leeches, large insects and small rodents in North American gardens.

How Did Snakes Lose Their Legs?

Snakes and lizards share a common ancestor, and snakes still have the genetic coding for legs and feet. So where did those appendages go?

Here's Why You Shouldn't Eat a Box Turtle in the Wild

Eating wild turtles may sound like an easy catch for survival, but it's a bad idea for several reasons.

Florida Enlists Expert Indian Snake Hunters to Solve Its Python Problem

Irula tribesmen, pros at catching deadly snakes, traveled all the way from India to be on the Burmese python case in South Florida.

Alligators Go Back 6 Million Years Further Than Thought

New fossil analysis illuminates the evolution of the modern American gator species, and why it may prefer freshwater sources — like your local golf course.

The Real Reason Turtles Have Shells (Hint, It's Not for Protection)

Why do turtles have shells is the kind of question a kid would ask. But the answer is surprisingly complicated.

Nile Crocodiles Retiring to South Florida?

Researchers have found three of these massive predators in South Florida. Could they join the ranks of Burmese pythons and other invasive species that call Florida home?

Alligators Fatter and Happier Courtesy of Wading Birds

We knew that wading birds like to use alligators as their guard dogs, but now researchers have figured out exactly how alligators benefit from the deal.

Caves of Hanging Snakes

At night in caves around the world, dangling snakes emerge from hiding ready to scarf up flying bats.

How Snake Handlers Work

When you handle deadly snakes for a living, caution is job one. When you handle snakes for God, it is not. Let's meet some folks in both worlds.

What's the deal with crocodile tears?

Just how deceitful a creature is the sharp-toothed, swimming crocodile? Any more so than the other animals inhabiting our waters? They do cry, but it has nothing to do with insincerity.

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