The Reptiles class is represented by four orders:
- Order Scaly (Suborders: lizards and snakes);
- Turtle Squad;
- Detachment Crocodiles;
- Detachment Beakheads (1 species – tuatara).
The Scaled squad unites lizards and snakes. Their body is covered with scales.
Lizards include monitor lizards, agamas, geckos, legless lizards, yellow-bellied lizards, and spindle-tails.
Unlike lizards, snakes have a long, legless body adapted to locomotion on the belly. The skeleton, due to the disappearance of the limbs, consists of the skull and the spine. Ribs attached to numerous vertebrae end freely. The right and left halves of the jaws are connected in front by extensible ligaments. In this regard, they can swallow prey (usually large) whole. The eyelids of snakes are transparent, they have grown together and turned into a thin, transparent corneous film, which is shed during molting.
Some snakes are venomous.
A person bitten by a snake needs urgent first aid. He should be laid down, immobilized, given plenty of warm drink, and taken to a hospital as soon as possible.
The Turtle squad is the oldest group of animals, which has retained its appearance to this day almost unchanged. A characteristic feature of turtles is the presence of a bony shell (only the head, limbs and tail remain free).
Terrestrial turtles usually have a tall, domed shell.
In freshwater and marine species, the shell is usually low, flattened and smooth, streamlined, which facilitates rapid swimming.
Crocodiles are a small group of about 30 species of the most highly developed reptiles.
Crocodiles are characterized by a long, laterally compressed tail and membranes between the toes of the hind legs. In the water, crocodiles move with the help of their tail. On land, they are less agile.
Their teeth are located in the recesses of the jaws, the heart is four-chambered, and the cerebellum is highly developed in the brain. Their body up to 8 m long is covered with strong horny shields, under which bone plates are located.
Above the surface of the head in crocodiles, the nostrils and eyes rise. This helps, immersed in the water, to observe the prey.
The detachment of crocodiles unites three families, of which the most famous are Real Crocodiles and Alligators.
Detachment of Gutteria
The tuatara outwardly resembles a lizard (up to 76 cm long). It is nocturnal, lives in burrows up to 1 m deep, feeds mainly on insects and other invertebrates. The hatteria has survived on several islands in New Zealand, where a nature reserve has been created to protect it.