Definition of Reptiles: Characteristics and Examples

Definition of Creeping Animals – The deadliest reptiles are scattered in almost all countries. They mostly live in natural forest and have deadly poison to survive in their habitat. Reptiles are one of the most feared because some of these types are among the deadliest animals on earth.

However, it should also be understood that no animal is naturally cruel or evil. They only try to survive by hunting for food or defending against predators that approach them. If humans encounter these animals, it’s better to avoid them so they don’t feel threatened and attack you back.

Definition of Creeping Animals

Reptiles or reptiles (in Latin ” reptans ” meaning “to creep” or “creep”) are a group of cold-blooded vertebrate animals and have scales that cover their bodies. Reptiles are tetrapods (animals with four limbs) and lay eggs whose embryos are enclosed by an amniotic membrane. Today, they live on every continent, except Antarctica.

Some experts have suggested that the reptiles were the first organisms to spread throughout the home, from dry habitats to small water bodies. Examples of reptiles that live in such habitats are Komodo dragons and lizards. Reptiles not only live in dry and dry environments, but are also known as animals that live in two natural or scientific languages ​​called amphibians (water and land). However, only a few species live in the area. Examples are turtles, snakes, and crocodiles.

Reptiles have important habitats on land. When in the water, they can only feed or lower their body temperature. In addition, reptiles have different heights, from the smallest to the largest.

Characteristics and Grouping of Creeping Animals

There are various characteristics in this reptile, here is an explanation:

  • The animal’s body is covered with scales.
  • Included in the group of animals that are cold-blooded.
  • Has a nervous system in the form of a brain.
  • Have a sensory device such as eyes, nose and ears.
  • Generally have a very long life.
  • Has a large respiratory organ in the form of lungs.
  • Most reps can spawn.
  • A few produce ovoviviparous or viviparous.
  • Can live in an arid and dry place and live in two realms.

Currently, reptiles are grouped into four types, namely:

  • Order Crocodilia (crocodiles, crocodiles, caimans, gavials and alligators): about 23 species.
  • Order Sphenodontia (New Zealand tuatara): about 2 species.
  • Order Squamata (lizards, snakes and amphisbaenia ( worm-lizards ): about 7,900 species.
  • Order Testudinata (tortoises, tortoises and terrapins): about 300 species.

Since some reptiles are more closely related to birds than to others (crocodiles are more closely related to birds than to lizards), many modern scientists prefer to make Reptilia a monophyletic grouping and also include birds, which currently contain more than 10,000 species.

The majority of reptiles are oviparous (laying eggs), although some species of Squamata are viviparous (give birth). Viviparous reptiles feed their fetuses using a type of placenta similar to mammals. Reptiles vary in size, from those measuring up to 1.6 centimeters (small gecko, Sphaerodactylus ariasae ) to measuring 6 meters and weighing up to 1 tonne (saltwater crocodile, Crocodylus porosus ). The branch of natural science that studies reptiles is herpetology.

Examples of Creeping Animals

The following are examples of reptiles including:

1. King Cobra

The Lanang snake or king cobra ( Ophiophagus hannah ) is the longest venomous snake species in the world. This snake is endemic to parts of India to Southeast Asia. Local names for this snake include ” oray totog ” (Sundanese), ” tedung selor ” or ” tedung selar ” (Malay), and ” ula anang ” (Javanese).

Hamadryas hannah is the scientific name first used by naturalist Theodore Edward Cantor in 1836 to describe four specimens of lanang snakes, three specimens obtained from Sundarban, India, and one specimen obtained from Kolkata. The taxon Naja bungarus was proposed by Hermann Schlegel in 1837 to describe a specimen of a lanang snake from Java. The taxon of the genus Ophiophagus was proposed by Albert Günther in 1864. This taxon was derived from the tendency of these snakes to prey on other snakes.

Lanang snake body length generally ranges from 3.18 to 4 meters. The longest specimen ever found is 5.85 meters long. Male snakes are larger than female snakes. The upper (dorsal) body is olive, yellowish-brown, or grayish in color, with the head tending to be lighter in color. The lower part of the body (ventral) is gray or brown, with a yellowish neck area decorated with black spots.

In young snakes, the body is darker or blackish in color, and is decorated with small white or yellowish stripes. Even so, the stripes are sometimes still visible as adults, although they are more subtle.

The head of the snake is large with a snout that tends to be short and blunt. Unlike other snakes in general, behind the pariental shield (scales) there is a pair of large occipital shields. There are 7 labial (lip) shields, some of which are in contact with the eyes. The pupils of the eyes are large and round.

The dorsal scales consist of as many as 15 rows in the middle of the body. The ventral scales are 215 to 262 pieces. Single anal scales, subcaudal scales as many as 80 to 120 pieces, some are single scales and some are paired scales.

Lanang snakes are widespread from parts of India (Maharashtra, Karnataka (Dandeli), Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, West Bengal, Bihar, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, and the Andaman Islands), Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, China (Fukien, Kwangtung, Hong Kong, Kwangsi, Hainan, Yunnan, SW Sichuan, Tibet), Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia (Sumatra, Mentawai Islands, Riau Islands, Bangka-Belitung , Java, Bali, Kalimantan, Sulawesi), and the Philippines (Balabac, Jolo, Luzon, Mindanao, Mindoro, Negros, Palawan, Panay, Cebu, Bohol, Samar).

Lanang snakes live in lowland areas up to an altitude of 1800 meters above sea level. Its main habitats include forests, swamps, bush areas, agricultural land, and even around settlements. This snake usually nests in holes in the ground, piles of rocks, thick bushes, or between tree roots. This snake especially likes locations overgrown with bamboo and also in mangrove forest areas.

2. Crocodile

Crocodiles are large reptiles that live in water. Scientifically, crocodiles include all species of members of the Crocodylidae tribe , including the crocodile finches ( Tomistoma schlegelii ). However, this name can also be used loosely to refer to alligator crocodiles, caimans and gavials; namely the crocodile relatives of different tribes.

However, there are also those who live in brackish water such as estuarine crocodiles. The main food of crocodiles is vertebrate animals such as fish, reptiles and mammals, sometimes also prey on mollusks and crustaceans depending on the species. Crocodiles are ancient animals, which have changed little due to evolution since the time of the dinosaurs.

3. Lizard

Scientifically, this large group is known as the suborder or children of the Lacertilia (some literature calls Sauria) which are members of the scaly reptiles (Squamata) along with snakes.

In general, the term “lizard” or “bengkarung” (English: lizards ) also includes groups of lizards, geckos, chameleons, flying geckos, monitor lizards, iguanas, and others. While narrowly, the term lizard (and bengkarung) in Indonesian only refers to a group of lizards that are generally small, dense, scaly, smooth and shiny, and live on the ground (English: skink , i.e. all species of the family Scincidae, or other types of from the infraorder Scincomorpha).

So, there are also types that do not have some of these characteristics. An example is the glass snake ( glass snake or glass lizard , Anguidae tribe) which does not have six physical legs so it resembles a snake.

4. Snake

Snakes are a group of legless and long-bodied reptiles that are widely distributed in the world. Scientifically, all types of snakes are grouped in one sub-order, namely Serpentes and are also members of the order Squamata (scaly reptiles) along with lizards. However, snakes (Serpentes) themselves are classified in a branch of the clade (Ophidia), which is a class of reptiles with or without legs, long bodies, and physiologically very different from lizards.

Snakes are thought to have evolved from ground lizards since the mid-Jurassic (174.1-163.5 million years ago). The oldest known fossil snake, Eophis underwoodi , was a small snake that lived in mainland southern England about 167 million years ago.

The main characteristics of snakes are long bodies and have no legs. However, these characteristics are also shared by some types of lizards, for example (Burton’s pencil lizard). However, snakes can feel vibrations through their lower jaws when they stick to the ground or on a surface.

Snakes do not have eyelids that can be opened and closed, and their eyes are always open throughout their lives. Another main characteristic is, the snake’s tongue is forked with each branch long and pointed, and can be stuck out through the cavity in the middle of the lips.

5. Iguanas

So far, the genus Iguana consists of only two species, namely the green iguana ( Iguana iguana ) and the Lesser Antilles iguana ( Iguana delicatissima ).

The term “iguana” is known to possibly come from the Taino language (one of the Native American tribes) namely “iwana” which also refers to these lizards. The body length of the iguana is between 1.5 meters to 1.8 meters, including the length of the tail. A distinctive feature of iguanas is that they have crests (as in roosters) under their jaws, and rows of scales forming large spines on their upper bodies.

In addition, the iguana also has an eye-like body organ on the top of its head. Iguana body color varies, ranging from bright green, brownish green, moss green, yellowish green or grayish, or caramel brown. The tail of the iguana is the same color as the body and is decorated with black or dark stripes from base to tip.

Iguanas have adapted well as tree lizards and plant-eating lizards (herbivores). However, they still need animal nutrition, usually by eating small insects that are on the plants they eat.

6. Tortoise

The animal nation called (order) Testudines (or Chelonians ) is distinctive and easily recognizable by the presence of a hard and stiff “house” or shell ( bony shell ).

This turtle shell consists of two parts. The upper part that covers the back is called the carapace ( carapace ) and the lower part (ventral, stomach) is called the plastron. Then each part is composed of two layers. The outer layer is generally in the form of large and hard scales, and arranged like tiles; while the inner layer consists of bone plates that are tightly packed like a shell. Exceptions are found in the labi-labi (Trionychoidea) and leatherback turtles, whose outer layer is without scales and is replaced by a layer of skin on the outside of the bone shell.

In Indonesian, we recognize three groups of animals that belong to this nation, namely turtles (English: sea turtles ), sea turtles or turtles ( fresh turtles ), and tortoises ( tortoises ). In English, it is further distinguished between land tortoises ( land tortoises ) and freshwater tortoises (fresh tortoises or terrapins ).