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Sunday, July 1, 2012



Caecilians completely lack limbs, making the smaller species resemble worms, while the larger species with lengths up to 1.5 m (4 ft 11 in) resemble snakes. The tail is short or absent, and the cloaca is near the end of the body. Their skin is smooth and usually dark-matte, but some species have colorful skins. Inside the skin are calcite scales. Because of these scales, the caecilians were once thought to be related to the fossil Stegocephalia, but they are now believed to be a secondary development, and the two groups are most likely unrelated. The skin also has numerous ring-shaped folds, or annuli, that partially encircle the body, giving them a segmented appearance. Like other living amphibians, the skin contains glands that secrete a toxin to deter predators. The skin secretions of Siphonops paulensis have been shown to have hemolytic properties

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