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Content tagged with "Reptiles and Amphibians"

Spring Peeper

Spring Peeper

Pseudacris crucifer
The voices of spring peepers are a true announcement that winter is ending. These small, slender frogs can be several overall colors, but seeing an X on the back is a good way to ensure your identification.

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Texas Horned Lizard

Phrynosoma cornutum
The Texas horned lizard is rare in Missouri but once lived in several southwestern counties. Its name comes from the large, hornlike scales along the back of the head.

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Texas ratsnake (black rat snake)

Texas Ratsnake (Black Rat Snake)

Pantherophis obsoleteus
This glossy “black snake” is one of Missouri’s largest and most familiar snakes. Its size and often deep-black color makes it seem imposing, but it is as harmless to humans as it is bad news for rodents!

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Three-toed box turtle

Three-Toed Box Turtle

Terrapene carolina triunguis
This box turtle usually has three hind toes. Its high-domed shell usually has a top ridge and is olive or brown with faint yellow or orange lines. Look for it in woodland habitats.

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Image of a timber rattlesnake

Timber Rattlesnake

Crotalus horridus
Missouri’s largest venomous snake is dangerously venomous, but there are few cases of rattlesnake bites in our state. It frequents rough country, is mostly nocturnal in summer and few Missourians ever encounter it.

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Image of an upland chorus frog

Upland Chorus Frog

Pseudacris feriarum
Earlier considered a subspecies of western chorus frog, the upland chorus frog is now recognized as a separate species. In Missouri, it’s only found in the Mississippi Lowlands of the Bootheel.

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Image of a variable groundsnake

Variable Groundsnake (Variable Ground Snake)

Sonora semiannulata semiannulata
The variable groundsnake is a small species with smooth, shiny scales and highly variable coloration. In Missouri, it is restricted to open, rocky hillsides of the southwestern corner of the state.

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Western Chicken Turtle

Deirochelys reticularia miaria
The western chicken turtle is a small-to medium-sized turtle with an oval shell and extremely long neck. It is endangered in Missouri, occurring only in the Mississippi Lowlands in the extreme southeastern part of the state.

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Image of a western cottonmouth

Western Cottonmouth

Agkistrodon piscivorus leucostoma
Many people mistakenly believe that any snake seen in or near the water is this venomous “water moccasin.” But there are seven species of nonvenomous, semi-aquatic snakes found in Missouri. Harmless watersnakes vastly outnumber the much-feared cottonmouths. All are protected by law.

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Image of a western foxsnake

Western Foxsnake (Western Fox Snake)

Pantherophis vulpinus
The western foxsnake is a moderately large snake with distinct brown blotches. In Missouri, it now rare and is found only in far eastern, northeastern, and northwestern sections.

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