Kalpana Kalpana (Editor)


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Kingdom  Animalia
Suborder  Sauria
Family  Anguidae
Scientific name  Pseudopus apodus
Higher classification  Pseudopus
Order  Scaled reptiles
Subphylum  Vertebrata
Infraorder  Anguimorpha
Subfamily  Anguinae
Phylum  Chordata
Rank  Species
Sheltopusik farm4staticflickrcom317326174210014e5118acc3jpg
Similar  Glass lizard, Anguidae, Slow worm, Caspian whipsnake, Anguis

Russian sheltopusik european legless glass lizard

The sheltopusik, also spelled scheltopusik, also commonly called Pallas' glass lizard or the European legless lizard (Pseudopus apodus), is a species of large glass lizard found from southern Europe to Central Asia.


Sheltopusik Impurest39s Guide to Animals 19 Sheltopusik OffTopic Comic Vine

Feeding my pet legless lizards also known as sheltopusik


The common names, sheltopusik and scheltopusik, come from Russian: желтопузик, literally "yellow-bellied".


Sheltopusik Pics of the Sheltopusik Ophisaurus apodus

The sheltopusik was previously included in the genus Ophisaurus, but has been placed in its own genus Pseudopus. It was originally described in 1775 by Peter Simon Pallas as Lacerta apoda.


The sheltopusik can reach a length of 135 cm (4.43 ft). It is tan colored, paler on the ventral surface and the head, with a ring-like/segmented appearance that makes it look like a giant earthworm with a distinctive fold of skin down each side called a lateral groove. Small (2 mm) rear legs are sometimes visible near the cloaca. Though the legs are barely discernible, the sheltopusik can be quickly distinguished from a snake by its ears, eyelids, and ventral scales.

Habitat and behaviour

Sheltopusik Sheltopusik Care amp History That Reptile Blog

Pseudopus apodus inhabits open country, such as short grassland or sparsely wooded hills. It consumes arthropods and small mammals. Snails and slugs appear to be its favorite prey, which may explain why it is particularly active in wet weather, although it prefers a dry habitat.

Defensive behaviour

Sheltopusik Sheltopusik Wikipedia

Due to its size, the sheltopusik tends to respond to harassment by hissing, biting, and musking. It is less likely to drop off its tail than some other species that display caudal autotomy. However, these occasional displays of caudal autotomy are responsible for the name "glass lizard" (or "glass snake"). The released tail may break into pieces, leading to the myth that the lizard can shatter like glass and reassemble itself later. In reality, if the tail is lost, it grows back slowly, but is shorter and darker; it may grow back to full length as it grows.

In captivity

Sheltopusik FileSheltopusik 036jpg Wikimedia Commons

Sheltopusiks are frequently available in the exotic pet trade, though rarely captive-bred. They do not typically tolerate a large amount of handling, but they adapt to captivity well, feeding on crickets, meal worms, small mice, eggs, snails or pieces of meat which they even accept from a keeper´s tweezers once they become used to captivity. They make hardy captives, capable of living up to 50 years.


About 10 weeks after mating, the female P. apodus lays about eight eggs which she hides under bark or a stone, and often guards them. The young hatch after 45 – 55 days. They average about 15 cm (5.9 in) long and usually start to eat after four days.


Sheltopusik Wikipedia

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