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Texas State Reptile – Texas Horned Lizard

The Texas Horned Lizard was adopted as the Texas state reptile on June 18, 1993. The Texas Horned Lizard is also referred to as the horned toad, horny toad and horned frog and with a lineage that can be traced back to the dinosaurs. It was put on the threatened species list in 1967 and is still on it today. According to Texas Parks and Wildlife, “They can be found in arid and semiarid habitats in open areas with sparse plant cover. Because horned lizards dig for hibernation, nesting and insulation purposes, they commonly are found in loose sand or loamy soils.” Its diet includes insects such as ants, grasshoppers, crickets, beetles and spiders. When threatened, it is able to inflate its body to frighten enemies. The legislature said “The horned lizard possesses numerous attributes that qualify it for designation as an official representative of our state; despite a spiny exterior that presents a forbidding appearance, it is at heart a docile and peaceful creature.”

Photo credit to Texas Parks and Wildlife.