Alright guys heres todays Reptile Info. Todays Subject is the Beautiful Gila Monster lizard. The Gila Monster is 1 of the only 2 venomous species of lizards found in the whole world. Though the Gila monster is venomous, its sluggish nature means it represents little threat to humans. However, it has earned a fearsome reputation and is sometimes killed out of fear despite it being a highly endangered species. Gila monster venom is about as toxic as that of a western diamondback rattlesnake. However, a relatively small amount of venom is introduced in a Gila bite. Gila monsters spend most of their lives hidden below the ground. There are three things that make them particularly well suited for the harsh environment in which they live. First, they are large lizards (the largest in the U.S.) measuring up to about 22 inches (56 cm) in total length, and are able to store more energy than smaller lizards. They store fat in their tail and in their bodies. Second, they are capable of eating relatively large meals. They have been observed in the wild eating meals up to one third of their body weight. Third, Gilas have low resting metabolic rates. Their low metabolic rates, and the ability to eat large meals, combined with their large capacity to store fat, make frequent searching for food unnecessary. Therefore, they are rarely seen above ground. It has been suggested that Gilas may consume their entire yearly energy budget in three or four large meals. Most of their above-ground activity occurs in three months in the spring. Not only is this when mating occurs, but it is when their main source of food (vertebrate nests) is most abundant. They are diurnal but most activity occurs in the morning. Gila monsters have a home range of about one square mile (1.6 km2). They are usually solitary animals, but do gather in communal areas in the spring for mating. The range of the Gila monster is primarily in Arizona and Mexico, the extreme southeastern corner of California, the southern tip of Nevada, and the southwestern corners of Utah and New Mexico. It is named for the Gila River in whose drainage it is a common resident. They most often prey on small birds and mammals, eggs, lizards, frogs, insects, and carrion. They may live 20 or more years in zoos, possibly longer in the wild. Please love, respect, and cherish all wildlife regaurdless.