Living in Arizona is not for the faint of heart. When you first arrive in the Sonoran Desert, you're bound to find a host of creatures and animals you've never seen anywhere else.

If you check in with the local social media sites, every day there's a question about some freakishly strange creature.

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Trying to figure out what all these weird creatures are! Canva
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I always imagine the person posting the inquiry. She or he is standing on a table, holding a broom and trembling as the freakazoid, super-critter goes peacefully about its business, oblivious to the trembling fear above it.

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The Sonoran Desert Toad

When the rains come, this big, fat amphibian emerges at night. The Sonoran Desert toad or Colorado River toad, as it's also known is one of the biggest toads in North America. This thing can be around 7 inches long!

Sonoran Desert Toad. // Canva
Sonoran Desert Toad. // Canva
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Be careful around this big dude. though, and watch your kids and dogs around these guys. They look big, fat, and peaceful, but they're hiding a toxic secret. The toad has glands on its head and legs that produce a powerful toxin. It's meant to keep predators away. Which means it can seriously hurt or even kill your dog if he bites it.

Sonoran Desert Toad. // Canva
Sonoran Desert Toad. // Canva
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The Arizona Horned Toad

According to Arizona-Leisure.com, the Arizona horned toad, horny toad, or desert horned lizard, as it's called, isn't a toad at all. The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum says it's more closely related to the iguana.

Arizona Horned Toad. Canva
Arizona Horned Toad // Canva
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You might find this lizard in your backyard, but leave it be. It won't hurt you, but it feeds mostly on ants and other insects, which is awesome.

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Arizona Horned Toad // Canva
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Perhaps the craziest thing about this lizard is the way it defends itself. The horned lizard squirts blood from its eyes to ward against predators. Newcomers to the desert often think it's been hurt when it's just trying to get you to leave it be!

The Vinegarroon

The first time most people see this flat, beastly-looking bug in Arizona, they consider packing up and leaving. Local social media is rife with shaky, blurry images of this creature and the pleading question: What in the BLEEP is this thing???!!!

Vinegarroon // Canva
Vinegarroon // Canva
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The vinegarroon, or whip scorpion, is yet another arachnid living in the Sonoran Desert, even though it looks more like a freakish, space bug.

It is not a true scorpion, though. This ugly bug has a pair of pincers and a long, whip-like tail to give it an even more menacing appearance.

When the vinegarroon gets mad, cornered, or threatened, it sprays a vinegar-like substance from its tail. It's loaded with an acid that can irritate the eyes and skin of predators.

Vinegarroon // Canva
Vinegarroon // Canva
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You'll mostly find this guy on the hunt for insects, spiders, scorpions, and other things it's more than welcome to dine on during the night hours. These critters are around three inches long, not including the tail. You might even see a female carrying her babies around on her abdomen, making her look even stranger.

It's not a Rock. It's a Rock. Lobster. From the Sierra Vista Red Lobster. // Canva
It's not a Rock. It's a Rock. Lobster. From the Sierra Vista Red Lobster. // Canva
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The desert is full of these crazy creatures. With all the help on the socials, you'll either discover what strange creature is lurking around your property or get some jokester letting you know it's most likely an escape from the Sierra Vista Red Lobster. Either way, you'll learn a LOT about desert dwellers.

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