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(Ophisaurus apodus), a legless lizard of the family Anguidae. Length, up to 1.5 m. The color is dark brown with leaden or reddish tints. The scheltopusik is found in southeastern Europe and Central and Southwest Asia. In the USSR it is found in the Crimea, the Caucasus, and Middle Asia. Scheltopusiks live in dense or moderately dense vegetation but may also be encountered in gardens and cut forests. They feed primarily on insects and mollusks, destroying agricultural pests.