Horned Lizards-Phrynosoma coronatum
Horned Lizards are often referred to as Horny Toads, due to the fact that their bodies are flat like a toad. They have sharp spines on their body and tail which help to protect them against predators. The horns on the backs of their heads are also a great deterrent to anyone who might think about making a meal of these prehistoric looking creatures.
They are able to adapt to the coloring of the soil so they can blend in, and be more difficult to see. They can be found in colors ranging from grey to brown to black and sometimes a bit of red.
They love hot, sandy, dry climates, so California is a perfect place for them to be. They bury themselves in the sand and hibernate during winter. These lizards consume vast quantities of insects. They particularly love red ants. But they also eat ticks, spiders, termites, beetles, moths, and just about any insect that might cross their path. They have long sticky tongues that they stick out of their mouths to grab their prey.
Some of the species of horned lizards, when startled, can squirt blood from their eyes as far as 3 feet. It has as foul odor and taste and sends potential predators far away. Eggs are buried in sand to keep them warm, then abandoned. Hatchlings instinctively know how to find and devour insects.