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Reptiles of the United States  
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A Guide to the Reptiles &
Amphibians of the United States
U.S. Reptile Guide snakes lizards Turtles turtles salamanders Alligators of the US
Snakes of the U.S.

Declining catch rates in Caribbean Nicaragua green turtle fishery may be result of overfishing
A 20-year assessment of Nicaragua’s legal, artisanal green sea turtle fishery has uncovered a stark reality: greatly reduced overall catch rates of turtles in what may have become an unsustainable take, according to conservation scientists. Growing up to 400 pounds in weight, the green turtle is the second largest sea turtle species next to the leatherback turtle. In addition to the threat from overfishing, the green turtle is at risk from bycatch in various fisheries, poaching of eggs at nesting beaches, habitat deterioration and loss due to coastal development and climate change effects, and pollution.
Gut capacity limits bird's ability to adapt to rapid climate change
An ornithologist has found that the capacity of a bird’s gut to change with environmental conditions is a primary limiting factor in their ability to adapt to the rapidly changing climate. And he believes that most other animals are also limited in a similar way.
Climate change likely culprit in coqui frog's altered calls, say biologists
The abundant Puerto Rican coqui frog has experienced changes since the 1980s that are likely due to global warming, biologists report. The call of the male coqui became shorter and higher pitched, and the animal itself has become smaller. The study is the first to show the effect of temperature change on a species of frogs in the tropics over a period of more two decades.
Does germ plasm accelerate evolution?
Scientists have challenged a long held belief about the way certain species of vertebrates evolved. They found that genes evolve more rapidly in species containing germ plasm. The results came about as they put to the test a novel theory that early developmental events dramatically alter the vertebrate body plan and the way evolution proceeds.
'Dinosaurs of the turtle world' at risk in Southeast U.S. rivers
Conservation of coastal rivers of the northern Gulf of Mexico is vital to the survival of the alligator snapping turtle, including two recently discovered species, scientists say. A new study shows the alligator snapping turtle, the largest freshwater turtle in the Western Hemisphere and previously believed to be one species, is actually three separate species.

An Online Guide to the Reptiles & Amphibians of the United States

Herpedia™.com is not a reference for keeping reptiles or amphibians in your home, nor is it a truely scientific type encyclopedia that covers all of the different biological difference between two subspecies (i.e. genetic diferences). It leans more to listing and identifying the species & subspecies of every reptile and amphibian in North America that have been recognized to date. Information such as the scientific name, distribution maps, photographs, and information pages for each that contain the size, general description, range, habitat, mating/breeding, etc.



There are two of the three major groups of amphibians present in the United States and they are represented by 194 species. They are the salamanders (including newts) (112 species) and the frogs & toads (82 species).

Salamanders resemble lizards in that they have slender bodies, long tails, distinct body regions, and usually front and hinds legs of nearly the same size. Like most amphibians, they have a moist scaleless skin. Salamanders lack the scales, claws, and external ear opening that are present in lizards.

Frogs and Toads are easily identified by their hind feet. True frogs have webbed toes, Tree frogs have toe pads and webbing, Toads have tubercles and no webbing, Spadefoot Toads have a horny projection (the spade) and no webbing.


There are some 283 species of native and introduced species of reptiles in the U.S. They are represented by Crocodilians (3 species), turtles (59 species), lizards (115 species), amphisbaenid (1 species), and snakes (115 species).

Crocodilians, with their size alone, are easily identified as the giants of the reptiles in the U.S. Their size, massive heads, protruding eyes and nostrils, and heavily muscular bodies, compressed tails distinguish them from their cousins, the lizards.

Turtles are recognized by everyone by their shells, which are generally used to distinguish species.

Snakes are the most specializes group of reptiles. They are distinctive in having a long scaled body. Unlike lizards, they have no arms or legs, external ear openings, or eyelids.

Lizards share characteristics with the crocodilians and snakes, but unlike the crocodilians they lack the size, and unlike snakes, they have arms, legs, eyelids, and external ear openings. Snakes and lizards have three types of scales: smooth, keeled, and granular.

And the single species of Amphisbaenid is found in Florida and has a long limbless body that resembles an earthworm. The body scales have formed into rings that encircle the body.





Our Community of Reptile and Amphibian Sites

Below are listed links to our other reptile and amphibian sites. You will find some that contain information on just certain species, others provide information on keeping them in captivity, one that will help you find a rescue or shelter in your area so you can adopt or surrender a reptile, one to find a vet that will take your reptile, amphibian or other exotic pet, and finally one that is a full feature reptile community containing reptile forums, classifieds, auctions, galleries, and much more! Take a few minutes and stop by our other sites to read and learn about reptiles and amphibians.

Herp Kingdom     Reptile Rescue League     Reptile News     Reptile Care Sheets     East Coast Hots     Coral Snakes

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Herp Vet Directory

reptilevetslogo A comprehensive listing of veterinarians in the United States that work with reptiles, amphibians, and other exotic pets. Find a Herp Vet near You!



Tarantula_LogoStop by and see the newest Tarantula Keepers website! We have live forums, free tarantala classlfieds, care information, video & photo gallery and much more!


The Pet Forums

petforumsOver 40 forums covering everything from dogs, cats, horse, to reptiles, tropical fish, and potbelly pigs!





Reptiles & Amphibians Listed by State

Want to know what reptiles and amphibians are in your state? Now you can get a complete list of all reptiles and amphibians for each state in our "The Reptiles & Amphibian of the United States" state directory. Want to see how this project is coming along? Click Here






Recommended Reptile & Amphibian Books at Amazon.com




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