Horned lizards are a genus (Phrynosoma) of lizards which are the type genus of the family Phrynosomatidae. The horned lizard is popularly called a “horned toad”, “horny toad” or “horned frog”, yet it is neither a toad nor a frog. The popular names come from the lizard’s rounded body and blunt snout, which make it resemble a toad or frog (Phrynosoma literally means “toad-bodied”). The spines on its back and sides are made from modified scales, whereas the horns on the heads are true horns (i.e. they have a bony core). Of 15 species of horned lizards in North America, eight are native to the United States. The largest-bodied and most widely distributed of the US species is the Texas horned lizard (P. cornutum).
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