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Melbourne's locally indigenous reptiles all belong in the order Squamata, with two suborders, the Serpentes (snakes) and the Sauria (lizards). Seven species of snake, all of them front-fanged venomous land snakes, occur within the greater Melbourne area. Of these the tiger (Notechis scutatus), lowland copperhead (Austrelaps superbus), brown (Pseudonaja textilis) and red-bellied black (Pseudechis porphyriacus) snakes are each capable of inflicting serious or even fatal bites on adult humans. Bites from the remaining species - the little whip (Suta flagellum), white-lipped (Drysdalia coronoides) and small-eyed (Cryptophis nigrescens) snakes - while not regarded as dangerous to adults, can have severe reactions similar to some insect stings, and could be dangerous to infants. Tigers, lowland copperheads, browns, white-lipped and little whip snakes still survive in some built-up areas, with some species living within 2 or 3 km of the Central Business District. Snakes, while they are legally protected species, may be removed from properties by licensed officers contactable through municipal authorities or the Department of Conservation and Environment.

Melbourne's lizards include representatives of all five Australian families: the skinks, represented by 17 species, including species such as the garden skinks (Lampropholis species) and blue-tongues (Tiliqua species); dragons, including the earless dragon (Tympanocryptis pinguicolla), once common on the basalt plains in the west and northern suburbs but now possibly extinct within Victoria, the tree dragon (Amphibolurus muricatus) and the introduced water dragon (Physignathus lesueurii); the geckos represented solely by the nocturnal marbled gecko (Christinus marmoratus); the goannas, represented by the lace monitor (Varanus varius), which occurs uncommonly in the Dandenong Ranges; the legless lizards, which are indigenous to Australia and New Guinea and are represented in Melbourne by two species, the striped legless lizard (Delma impar), living in grasslands in the north and west of Melbourne and now considered to be endangered, and the scaly-foot (Pygopus lepidopodus), which persists in some of the south-eastern bayside suburbs.

Two fresh-water tortoises, the snake-necked tortoise (Chelodina longicollis) and the Murray River short-necked tortoise (Emydura macquarii), have been successfully introduced into Melbourne's waterways. In addition to these, marine reptiles such as green turtles (Chelonia mydas) and yellow-bellied sea snakes (Pelamis platurus) occasionally get washed up in Port Phillip Bay.

John Coventry