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Any of about 14 species of lizards of the genus Phrynosoma, family Iguanidae. They usually have daggerlike head spines (horns) and a flattened oval body with pointed fringe scales along the sides. Species range from about 3 to 5 in. (8 to 13 cm) long. They are found from British Columbia, Can., south to Guatemala and from the U.S. states of Arkansas and Kansas westward, usually in desert or semidesert sandy country. They eat mainly ants. They hide by changing their colour pattern and wriggling sideways into the sand until all but the head is covered. They may defend themselves by inflating the body quickly and (rarely) spurting blood from the eyes.
Variants of HORNED TOAD
horned toad or horned lizard
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on horned toad, visit Britannica.com.