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Texas Horned Lizard

The Texas horned lizard is commonly referred to as “horny toad.”

The Texas horned lizard has a flat body that is somewhat circular in shape. Their head has several horns, with two large head spines that are much longer than the others.

It is brown or sandy colored with two rows of scales on each side of the body. They are masters of camouflage and generally rely on their coloration to protect them from predators. Sometimes they partially bury themselves in the sand to hide. If their camouflage fails they can squirt droplets of blood from their eyes, confusing a predator and allowing them to escape.

They are commonly found in loose soil, because they dig to hibernate.

About 70% of the Texas horned lizard’s diet is made up of harvester ants, and they sometimes eat other small insects. The Texas horned lizard has declined by about 30% of its range. This can be caused by the overuse of pesticides and the spread of the red imported fire ants. These invasive fire ants destroy the Texas horned lizard’s source of food.