California Biota Home Page....Animalia....Chordata....Vertebrata
Reptilia includes an array of amniotic organisms that are clothed in
scales. The various groups of reptiles also share a number osteological
features inherited from a common ancestor. Not all descendents of
that common ancestor, however, are included in the Reptilia.
Birds, which share a common ancestry with therapod dinosaurs, are
traditionally excluded from the Reptilia and placed in the class
The extant members of the Reptilia are divided into two subclasses, the Anapsida (which includes turtles and tortoises), and the Romeriida (which includes all other living reptiles). Representatives of both groups occur in California.