a snake with legs

Discussion in 'General Lizards' started by mekiki, Apr 14, 2004.

  1. mekiki

    mekiki Embryo

    Hello fellow lizard lovers,

    First time here, nice site. Came here seeking an answer to my question, hopefully someone can help. I live in a hilly area in southern california that has more than its share of lizards and rattle snakes. This past month a boy on his way to school was bitten by an 18'' baby rattler and the following day another rattle snake, 5 ft. long, was found in someone else's garage.

    Well today while outside of my house I saw a snake. It was long, thin (no belly section) and had a flatten head, it was a snake. Had my mom come outside and she too saw the snake. While she and I were debating what to do, it crawled off on its small legs and went under our house.

    What the heck is going on? What was it? A snake or a lizard? Cuz one can stay, but the other's got to go.


    JEFFREH Administrator

  3. lacerta

    lacerta Member

    To put it quite simply, if it had legs it was not a snake. Snakes lost their legs long before humans were around. Now there are lizards that are legless and they resemble snakes (except for the ears and eyelids). If you are sure it had legs then it was a lizard. My guess was it was an alligator lizard. They have a flattened triangular head, slender snake-like body, and small underdeveloped legs. Usually not more than a foot long. Another possibility is a skink. Very smooth shiny skin and many species have vestigial-like legs. Also some legless lizards have vestigial front legs that just sort of hang limp to the side. Some species can be quite long (3 feet for one european species). This would be an excellent opportunity for you to go to the local bookstore and buy a good Field Guide for Western Reptiles (Peterson's Guide, or Audubon guide). When you get a get a good ident then please let us know what you saw.

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