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File:Perentie Lizard Perth Zoo SMC Spet 2005.jpg

The reptiles of Australia are a diverse group of animals, widely distributed across the continent. Three of the four orders of reptiles are native to Australia: Testudines, Squamata and Crocodilia. The only missing extant order is Sphenodontia, containing the tuataras, which are endemic to New Zealand. Australia has a large diversity of reptiles, with over 860 species. This is rich in comparison to other continents. For example, North America has approximately 280 species of reptile.[1] The most diverse group is Squamata, also known as the snakes and lizards. The snakes and lizards are especially diverse in the arid areas of Australia, where diversity of other fauna is generally low. Spinifex grass is a major habitat which allows them to remain in a relatively cool, moist area.

Australia has a large array of reptiles which can be dangerous to humans. The world's largest reptile, the Saltwater Crocodile (Crocodylus porosus), is native to Australia.

Australian reptile familiesEdit

colspan="100%" align="center" Template:Bgcolor-blue|Testudines - 4 families
FamilyCommon NamesExample SpeciesExample Photo
CheloniidaeSea turtlesGreen Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas)File:GreenSeaTurtle-2.jpg
DermochelyidaeLeatherback Sea TurtleLeatherback Sea Turtle (Dermochelys coriacea)File:LeatherbackTurtle.jpg
ChelidaeAustro-American Side-necked TurtlesCommon Snakeneck Turtle (Chelodina longicollis)File:Eastern long neck tortoise - chelodina longicollis.jpg
CarettochelyidaePig-nosed TurtlePig-nosed Turtle (Carettochelys insculpta)File:Carettochelys insculpta.jpg
colspan="100%" align="center" Template:Bgcolor-blue|Squamata - 12 families
FamilyCommon NamesExample SpeciesExample Photo
GekkonidaeGeckosThick-tailed Gecko (Underwoodisaurus milii)File:Underwoodisaurus milii.jpg
PygopodidaeLegless lizardsBurton's Legless-lizard (Lialis burtonis)File:Lialis burtonis.jpg
Agamidae - Eastern Bearded Dragon (Pogona barbata)File:Bearded dragon04.jpg
VaranidaeMonitors or goannasLace Monitor (Varanus varius)File:Goanna head2.jpg
ScincidaeSkinksWestern Blue-Tongued Skink (Tiliqua occipitalis)File:Tiliqua occipitalis.jpg
TyphlopidaeBlind snakes - -
PythonidaePythonsGreen Tree Python (Morelia viridis)File:Gruenebaumpython4cele4.jpg
ColubridaeColubrid snakes Brown Tree Snake (Boiga irregularis)File:Snake browntree.jpg
Elapidae - Common Death Adder (Acanthophis antarcticus)File:Acanthophis antarcticus.jpg
HydrophiidaeSea snakes - -
LaticaudidaeSea kraits - -
AcrochordidaeFile snakes Arafura File Snake (Acrochordus arafurae)File:Arafura file snake (Acrochordus arafurae) in captivity.jpg
colspan="100%" align="center" Template:Bgcolor-blue|Crocodilia - 1 family
FamilyCommon NamesExample SpeciesExample Photo
CrocodylidaeCrocodilesFreshwater Crocodile (Crocodylus johnstoni)Australia Cairns 18

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

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