This species of lizard has a distinctive flat body with one row of fringe scales down the sides. They have one row of slightly enlarged scales on each side of the throat. Colours can vary and generally blend in with the color of the surrounding soil, but they usually have a beige, tan, or reddish dorsum with contrasting, wavy blotches of darker color. They have two dark blotches on the neck that are very prominent and are bordered posteriorly by a light white or grey color. They also have pointed scales on the dorsum (back) of the body. Juveniles are similar to adults, but have shorter and less-pronounced cranial spines. Desert horned lizards have horns that are wide at the base, which isn't true for their congener, the short-horned lizard.
© Through My Lens - Dennis Donohue