Content tagged with "Reptiles and Amphibians"

Image of alligator snapping turtle

Alligator Snapping Turtle

Macrochelys temminckii
In Missouri, alligator snapping turtles are protected, and it is illegal to harvest them.

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Image of American Bullfrog

American Bullfrog

Lithobates catesbeianus (formerly Rana catesbeiana)
The American bullfrog is Missouri’s largest frog. This common species is easy to hear on warm nights when the males call a deep, sonorous “jug-a-rum, jug-a-rum” that can be heard from half a mile away.

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Image of a blanding's turtle

Blanding’s Turtle

Emydoidea blandingii
Blanding’s turtle has an oval, moderately high-domed upper shell and a long head and neck. This medium-sized turtle is endangered in Missouri.

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Boreal Chorus Frog

Boreal Chorus Frog (Western Chorus Frog)

Pseudacris maculata
More often heard than seen, the boreal chorus frog calls with a vibrating “prrreeep” that rises in pitch at the end. It lasts one or two seconds and sounds like a fingernail scratched over the teeth of a pocket comb. For a long time, our species was called the western chorus frog, but scientists now recognize it as a separate species.

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Image of a broad-banded watersnake

Broad-Banded Watersnake (Broad-Banded Water Snake)

Nerodia fasciata confluens
The broad-banded watersnake is a beautiful semiaquatic snake with broad, irregularly shaped bands that can be brown, red-brown, or black and are separated by yellow and gray. This nonvenomous species is restricted to the southeastern corner of the state.

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Photo of Broad-headed skink on ground among leaves

Broad-Headed Skink

Plestiodon laticeps
The broad-headed skink is a large, harmless, smooth-scaled lizard that lives along the edge of forests and woodlots. It often makes its home in a large dead tree, sometimes using abandoned woodpecker holes or other cavities.

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Image of a bullsnake

Bullsnake (Bull Snake)

Pituophis catenifer sayi
Missouri's largest snake may hiss loudly and vibrate its tail when alarmed, but it is nonvenomous. This species is extremely valuable in controlling destructive rodents.

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Image of a cave salamander

Cave Salamander

Eurycea lucifuga
This common amphibian of the Ozark Plateau lives in caves, springs and rocky streams. Recognize it by its normally bright orange skin dotted with dark brown or black spots.

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Photo of a central newt adult on a plastic aquarium plant.

Central Newt

Notophthalmus viridescens louisianensis
A small, olive-brown salamander with a fascinating life cycle, the central newt lives in and around woodland ponds and swamps in all but our far northwestern counties.

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Image of an american toad

Eastern American Toad

Anaxyrus americanus americanus (formerly Bufo americanus)
The eastern American toad is medium-sized, with horizontal pupils and with a kidney-shaped gland behind each eye. Despite their rough complexion, most people find these common, harmless toads endearing.

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