PARAGUAYAN WILDLIFE HOME
REPTILES HOME
WORM LIZARDS

ORDER SQUAMATA

     The reptilian Order Squamata includes 2 well known suborders (the snakes of the suborder Serpientes and lizards of the suborder) and one lesser known suborder (Amphisbaena) containing a group of burrowing reptiles.

 

SUBORDER AMPHISBAENA

    Amphisbaenans compose the only group of reptiles which is exclusively subterranean in its habits.  There are 4 families in this group, three of which have no trace of limbs or limb girdles.  The fourth family has not only retained its arms, but the hands have grown to considerable size.  They range in size from 10 to 75 cm and feed on invertebrates and small vertebrates.  Like lizards and snakes, they possess hemipenes.  Some species lay eggs while others give live birth.  Their eyelids are fused and their eyes are so reduced that is probable that they only serve for the distinction of light and dark and not for vision per se (Halliday, 1987).  Many species of the genus Amphisbaena are large, the largest of which can grow to more than 75 cm (Mattison, 1989).

Amphisbaenan Amphisbaenan
Amphisbaenan Amphisbaenan
Amphisbaenan Amphisbaena alba

Amphisbaena alba

Amphisbaena bolivica

Amphisbaena bolivica

Amphisbaena camura

Amphisbaena camura

Amphisbaena mertensi

Amphisbaena mertensi

Amphis prunicolor

Amphis prunicolor

Leptosternon microcephalum

Leptosternon microcephalum