Gila Monster

Gila Monster

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Credit: KEITH KENT/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: A Gila Monster (Heloderma suspectum). This is one of the two lizard species that are venomous. The Gila Monster inhabits desert areas of North America, from Nevada and south-east Utah in the USA to Sonora in Mexico. They grow to a length of 60 centimetres, and prey on nestling rodents and birds and on the eggs of birds and reptiles. Gila Monsters are nocturnal animals, and store fat in their tails for use during the seasons when their prey is not available. Among the recorded instances where humans have been bitten by Gila Monsters, about one third were fatal. To date no effective antidote has been developed.

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Keywords: animal, beaded lizards, gila monster, heloderma suspectum, helodermatidae, lizard, nature, reptile, reptilia, type, venomous lizards, wildlife, zoology

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