Amazon Quiz: Which group of animals have scales?
None of the above
The majority of reptiles have an uninterrupted exterior layer of epidermal scales. Beta keratin, a kind of keratin found only in reptile scales, is also present in the interscalar skin, which is a characteristic shared with other vertebrates. Reptilian scales primarily consist of keratin.
Scales can range in size from being extremely small, like the miniscule tubercular scales of dwarf geckos (Sphaerodactylus), to being rather massive, like the body scales of many different species of lizards and snakes. The scutes protecting a turtle’s shell or a crocodile’s plates are made of the biggest scales.
Reptiles do not maintain a steady internal body temperature, in contrast to birds and mammals. They cannot stay warm on a chilly day without fur or feathers, and they cannot cool themselves on a hot day without sweat glands or the ability to pant. Instead, they shift as needed between the sun and the shade. They stop moving around when the weather becomes colder. Reptiles are cold-blooded due to their slow metabolic rate and heat-seeking habit.
Temperature also affects reptile reproduction. Only boas and pythons produce living offspring. The other species leave after laying their eggs in a modest nest.
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