Reptiles, also known as reptiles (lat. reptilis = “to crawl”), are an estimated 10,000 species of vertebrates. The first reptiles populated the planet more than 300 million years ago in the Permian geological era.
There is often confusion between reptiles and amphibians. In fact, there are some similarities with the amphibian class, including poikilothermy. The clear distinguishing feature is the metamorphosis. While amphibians change their external appearance in the course of their metamorphosis, reptiles already hatch in their final ‘form’ and therefore no longer change.
Reptiles are divided into four orders:
- Tuataras (considered ‘Living Fossils’);
- Crocodiles (alligator, caiman, crocodile);
- Scaled Creatures (all snakes).
By the way: The already extinct dinosaurs also belong to the class of reptiles.
Characteristics of the reptiles:
All reptiles (creeping animals) share common characteristics, including four-leggedness, poikilothermy, and pulmonary respiration. However, there may be occasional deviations. This means that not all of the characteristics listed here have to apply to a reptile.
Respiration: Reptiles breathe through the lungs (pulmonary breathing)
Legs: All reptiles have four legs. In snakes, however, these have receded to such an extent that they are practically no longer recognizable.
Egg: The eggs of the reptiles are covered by a lime shell so that no water escapes. This is the only reason why reptiles can lay their eggs on land.
Birth: Some reptiles lay eggs, others give live birth to their offspring (e.g. sea snakes).
Reproduction: In almost all reptiles, reproduction occurs as part of copulation, so the eggs inside the reptile are fertilized.
Skin: Reptile skin is usually dry.
Hearing: Reptiles do not have good hearing. They have what is known as Jacobson’s organ, which they use to detect very subtle smells.
Cloaca: Reptiles have only one exit for the urethra and anus, the so-called cloaca.
Poikilotherm: The ambient temperature determines the body temperature. Cold-blooded animals such as reptiles can no longer move when the temperatures are too cold.
Scales: Horn scales or horn plates form armor against mechanical influences.
Tail: All reptiles have a tail or a vestige of a former tail.
Vertebrates: As vertebrates, reptiles have a spine.
List of reptiles:
Snake, Alligator, Bearded Dragon, Slow Worm, Chameleon, Lizard, Galapagos Tortoise, Inland Taipan, Caiman, Rattlesnake, Ball Python, Corn Snake, Adder, Crocodile, Iguana, Saltwater Crocodile, Grass Snake, Tortoise, Black Mamba, Sea Snake, Viper, Monitor Lizard.
Reptiles are also known as reptiles. About 10,000 different species are currently known.
Tuataras, crocodiles, tortoises, and scaly reptiles make up the four orders within the class of reptiles
Dinosaurs belong to the family of reptiles.
Are birds reptiles?
Birds, like amphibians, reptiles, and mammals, are traditionally considered to be a separate class of terrestrial vertebrates (Tetrapoda). However, this is incorrect from a modern, cladistic point of view, since birds are the only surviving group of the clade dinosaurs and are a subgroup of reptiles.
Why are dinosaurs considered reptiles?
Crocodiles, lizards, snakes, and tortoises are therefore close relatives, which are characterized, for example, by scaly skin or the lack of a constant body temperature. The dinosaurs are therefore also to be counted among the reptiles.
Which is the smallest reptile?
Nana is probably the smallest reptile on earth. Scientists have discovered a tiny new species of chameleon in an area of rainforest in northern Madagascar. This so-called nano-chameleon is about the size of sunflower seed and fits on the tip of a finger.
Do reptiles have feelings?
What is certain is that mammals and also birds and reptiles can feel emotions.
What kinds of reptiles make the best pets?
What reptiles can you keep as pets?
- Boas, tiger/ball pythons.
- Corn snakes, ground snakes, or king snakes.
- Water Dragons, Bearded Dragons.
- Leopard geckos, monitor lizards, chameleons, and anoles.
- Spiny or Spiny-Tailed Iguanas.
- Leopard tortoise or Greek tortoise.
Which reptiles can you pet?
Things are a bit different with bearded dragons. These desert animals are mostly tame and can be taken out of the terrarium to be petted. A recommended gecko for children is the leopard gecko, which can also become very trusting.
Why do people decide to have reptiles as pets?
Reptiles make great pets because they are relatively low maintenance. Due to the nature of how reptiles are kept as pets, there are no concerns regarding bad odors, chewed/scratched furniture, or too much noise. Reptiles are also known for their long lifespans, so they make great lifelong companions.
What is the most intelligent reptile?
The crocodiles must therefore be stupid is no more than a widespread prejudice. In fact, the animals are among the most intelligent reptiles. Unlike most species, crocodiles are able to learn from mistakes, and they can also tell people apart.
What are some of the best pet reptiles for beginners?
Geckos, lizards, and iguanas in particular can be a great idea for beginners in reptile keeping. These are usually calm, easy to care for, and live in dry terrariums. Bearded dragons in particular are very popular in German reptile households.
Is a turtle considered a reptile?
Turtles are reptiles that have lived on earth since ancient times. They crawl on land or in water. However, many of them are endangered, critically endangered, or already extinct. Read more about these armored critters here.