Gila Monster Natural History Paper

Topics: Gila monster, Gila River, Lizard Pages: 4 (1275 words) Published: February 26, 2007
“Gila Monster”

-Scientific Classification-
Species:Heloderma suspectum

-Binomial Name-
Heloderma suspectum
Two subspecies:
Heloderma suspectum cinctum, banded gila monster
Heloderma suspectum suspectum, reticulated gila monster

The gila monster has got to be the least identified creature I have ever studied. What I mean is on, a site I am thankful for because I have used it greatly on past reports and it is great, there is barely anything on the gila monster. There might be four paragraphs that are each four sentences, if that. So to do this report it took many, many, many great resources to compile enough information where I thought I had told you everything about the gila monster, well almost everything. So I hope you enjoy and even pick up a few things from the following descriptions of the gila monster's habitat, niche, lifespan, range, reproductive behaviors, current population status, and a little bit about how the venomous saliva of the creature is very helpful to us.

First of all, the gila monster grows to about 21-22 inches long, and is a diurnal carnivore that is slow and sluggish but can lunge quickly to grab on to its prey with a very tenacious bite. It has short 2

legs and they are set far apart. It has curved claws on its feet and they use those for digging. Its tongue is like a snake in the way it can pick up scents. The animal's tail serves as an indicator of how healthy it is. A plump tail means its well fed and healthy, where as a bony, triangular shaped tail means that the lizard is starving and dehydrated. Their skin patterns provide camouflage and also serves as a warning sign to predators. Is the largest lizard known to the United States, and is one of only a few lizards that is venomous, although its venom is not very strong and is mainly used just for...
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