MBG's Field Reports - Explorations and Adventures

G i l a M o n s t e r

This big heavy lizard has a short, fat tail. It can store fat in its tail for use when food is hard to find. It has brightly colored beadlike scales on its back. The gila lives under rocks or in a burrow, which it digs itself or takes over from another animal. It is nocturnal most of the time. The gila monster is dangerous. The venom is produced in glands in the lower jaw. The poison flows into the victim as the lizard chews. The gila also eats the eggs of birds and reptiles. Gila monsters are found in the deserts of Utah, Arizona, New Mexico and Mexico.