reptiles

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'Needless to Say, the Addressee Was Quite Startled'

Live lizards were mailed to the wrong address near New York City

(Newser) - Several live lizards were wrongly delivered to a residence in a village north of New York City. "Needless to say the addressee was quite startled when they opened the box," Port Chester police wrote on Facebook. Police received the call about the reptiles just after noon on Saturday....

For the First Time, a Major Analysis of Threat to Reptiles

21% of 10K reptile species reviewed are endangered

(Newser) - Even the king cobra is "vulnerable." More than 1 in 5 species of reptiles worldwide are threatened with extinction, according to a comprehensive new assessment of thousands of species published Wednesday in the journal Nature . Of 10,196 reptile species analyzed, 21% were classified as endangered, critically endangered,...

Authorities Charge Siblings in Reptile Smuggling Scheme

30-year-old Calif. man caught at Mexican border allegedly smuggled 1.7K creatures since 2016

(Newser) - A California man who allegedly tried to cross into the US from Mexico last month with dozens of reptiles crammed under his clothing has been charged, and authorities say he was involved in a yearslong scheme. Per NBC San Diego , 30-year-old Jose Manuel Perez, aka Julio Rodriguez, is accused of...

All These Snakes Were Under and in a Man's Clothes

30-year-old US citizen was arrested at the California-Mexico border

(Newser) - A man who tried to slither past US border agents in California had 52 lizards and snakes hidden in his clothing, authorities said Tuesday. The man was driving a truck when he arrived at the San Ysidro border crossing with Mexico on Feb. 25 and was pulled out for additional...

If You See This Snake in NC, Don't Go Near It—Call 911

Police are on the lookout in Raleigh for an escaped zebra cobra

(Newser) - If you're out for a jog or walking your dog in Raleigh today, you might want to steer clear of the Brittany Woods neighborhood. WRAL reports that residents there "are waking up to another day of anxiety" after police reported that a highly toxic zebra cobra is on...

Reptile That Fits on Fingertip May Be World's Smallest

It could take years to confirm that Madagascar's 'Brookesia nana' chameleon is the tiniest

(Newser) - It fits on a human fingertip, but this chameleon could make a big splash. Scientists from Madagascar and Germany say a newly discovered species of chameleon is a contender for the title of world's smallest reptile, the AP reports. Frank Glaw, who was part of the international team of...

He Thought Aliens Were Invading Humans, According to His Killer

Barbara Rogers gets 15 to 40 years for third-degree murder

(Newser) - "To me, it's amazing that somebody could put a gun to somebody's head, blow their brains out essentially, and a jury finds them guilty of third-degree murder and not first." With that, Jackie Mineo sums up the outrage over her nephew's 2017 murder and 44-year-old...

Funky, Green-Haired Turtle Is in Trouble

Mary River Turtle of Australia is under threat of extinction

(Newser) - You'd think its punk-rock hair would be enough to bring an Australian turtle fans, even before they learn of its ability to breathe through its genitals. But if overlooked now, researchers hope the Mary River Turtle's spot on a list of unique, endangered reptiles will bring necessary attention...

Montana Fossil Reveals Ancient Sea Creature

A long-gone inland sea still has secrets to give up

(Newser) - A fossil found by a Montana elk hunter nearly seven years ago has led to the discovery of a new species of prehistoric sea creature that lived about 70 million years ago in an inland sea that flowed east of the Rockies, the AP reports. The new elasmosaur species is...

Knoxville Zoo Suffers a 'Catastrophic' Animal Loss

Zoo can't explain why 33 reptiles were found dead

(Newser) - Thirty-three reptiles were found dead last week at a Tennessee zoo, and officials there say they have no clues yet about how it happened. Zoo Knoxville told local news outlets that nearly all of the dead animals were snakes. They were all found dead in the reptile area. Surviving animals...

How the Turtle Got Its Shell
 How the Turtle Got Its Shell 

How the Turtle Got Its Shell

The 240M-year-old 'grandfather' turtle had no shell and a very long tail

(Newser) - For at least a century, scientists have puzzled over the turtle. Thanks to a gap in the fossil record between 260 million and 220 million years ago, it's unclear how the turtle got its shell and to whom it's most closely related. Now a fossil from 240 million...

Alligator Taken From Backyard After 37 Years

'Jaxson' had been family pet of sorts in California since 1977

(Newser) - The Los Angeles Animal Services Department found an 8-foot male alligator in the backyard of a home in Van Nuys, Calif, and he wasn't exactly a recent arrival to the neighborhood. Named Jaxson, the reptile had lived there for 37 years. Jaxson was soon transported to the Los Angeles...

Toothless 'Dragons' Roamed Our Skies

Pterosaurs were neither dinosaurs nor ancient birds but winged reptiles

(Newser) - A family of animals ruled the skies some 90 million years ago, but they weren't dinosaurs, and they weren't birds, and they didn't even have teeth. The winged reptiles of the late Cretaceous period belong to a family of pterosaurs called Azhdarchidae, and they appear to have...

Were Dinos Cold-Blooded or Warm-Blooded? Neither

Scientists call for a new class called 'mesothermy'

(Newser) - A new study suggests that dinosaurs aren't either warm-blooded (endothermic) or cold-blooded (ectothermic) but rather a little bit of both, occupying a newly-described intermediate category scientists are calling "mesothermy." The debate on just where dinosaurs fall has raged for years, but in this study scientists looked primarily...

Ancient Sea Beasts Were Dark as Night
 Ancient Sea Beasts 
 Were Dark as Night 
new study

Ancient Sea Beasts Were Dark as Night

Sea beasts weren't so colorful

(Newser) - Ancient sea reptiles are finally showing their true colors. Researchers investigated skin remnants from ancient leatherback turtles and ichthyosaurs and mosasaurs, which resembled fish. The researchers found that all three creatures were covered in black skin or scales, with reason: The coloration may have helped camouflage them and protect them...

Extinct 'Lizard King' Named After Doors Singer

Jim Morrison honored with 'Barbaturex morrisoni'

(Newser) - Scientists recently found that a 6-foot, 60-pound lizard that lived 36 million to 40 million years ago was the largest plant-eating lizard ever to have walked the Earth, so they gave it a fitting moniker: Barbaturex morrisoni, a play on Jim Morrison's "Lizard King" alter ego. The lizard...

19% Reptiles at Risk of Extinction
 19% of Reptiles at 
 Risk of Extinction 
New Study

19% of Reptiles at Risk of Extinction

Study reviewed 1,500 species

(Newser) - Farming and logging are destroying the habitats of the world's reptiles, putting nearly one in five in danger of extinction, reports AFP . The new study—in which 200 experts examined 1,500 species of snakes, turtles, lizards, crocodiles, and other reptiles—claims to be the most comprehensive made of...

Cranky Crocodile Steals, 'Drowns' Lawnmower

Cranky Aussie croc Elvis defeats noisy machine

(Newser) - Even by the less-than-happy-go-lucky standards of saltwater crocodiles, Elvis is one cranky and aggressive critter. The 16-foot croc, apparently annoyed by the sound of workers cutting the grass in his enclosure at an Australian reptile park, lunged at a lawnmower and dragged it into a pond. The croc, who lost...

Man Fights Off Croc by Slugging Him in Snout

Father was swimming with daughters when attacked

(Newser) - A father attacked by an 8-foot crocodile in northern Australia while swimming with his daughters survived by punching the reptile repeatedly in the snout, reports the Independent . The man suffered two big bites on his back and 10 puncture wounds on his wrist, but the injuries are not life-threatening, said...

Virus Wiping Out Crickets Raised for Snakes

Cricket farms being forced out of business

(Newser) - These are hard times for America's cricket farmers, and unless a virus is brought under control, they could become hungry times for pet snakes. The virus has swept through farms, killing millions of the crickets raised for pet reptiles and zoo animals, and driving several farmers out of business, the...

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