Slithering serpents, exotic lizards and huge tortoises await visitors at Reptile Gardens, the world's Largest reptile zoo.

Located in South Dakota, USA, it houses 225 different reptile species, as well as a few other animals.

Reptile Gardens was set up back in 1937 by Earl Brockelsby, a 21-year-old snake enthusiast who was famous for keeping a rattlesnake under his hat while giving guided tours!

The attraction is now overseen by fearless head keeper Terry Phillip who gave Guinness World Records a guided tour to celebrate Reptile Gardens’ inclusion in Guinness World Records 2018 and Guinness World Records: Amazing Animals.

Terry has been a reptile expert for more than 20 years, so he knows his stuff when it comes to record-breaking creatures.

Below are a small selection of the record-worthy creatures you'll find in Reptile Gardens:

Slowest chelonian

Galapagos Giant Tortoise

Giant tortoises – such as those from the Galápagos islands – have a top speed of just 0.37 km/h (0.23 mph), making them the world's slowest chelonian (a turtle, terrapin, or tortoise). They're also the Largest tortoise (species).

Most venomous snake

Most venomous snake species

The world's Most venomous snake is the Australian taipan (Oxyuranus scutellatus), the largest member of the cobra family in Australia. Reaching 3.3 m (nearly 11 ft) in length, it is found in north-east Queensland. 

The taipan attacks without warning, inflicting several bites in quick succession. 

The venom is fatal to people, causing death in minutes.

"There is something beautiful about every species that we work with here. Everyone thinks that snakes are so scary – but honestly they're just misunderstood!" – Terry Phillip.

Longest venomous snake

Longest venomous snake

The king cobra (Ophiophagus hannah) or hamadryad averages 3–4 m (10–13 ft) in length.

Fastest land snake

The fastest land snake is the aggressive black mamba (Dendroaspis polylepis) of south-eastern, tropical Africa. The snake can reach speeds of 16-19 km/h (10-12 mph) in short bursts over level ground.

Slimmest lizard

The Australian legless snake lizard (Lialis burtoni) can measure more than 50 cm (20 in) long, but at its mid-body is no thicker than a pencil.

Most venomous lizard

Most Venomous Lizard

Heloderma suspectum is native to the south-western USA and north-western Mexico. Just 0.4 mg/kg of its venom has proved lethal in mice, making it the most venomous lizard. Teresa, pictured, is no doubt aware that humans rarely die from a gila monster bite, as only relatively small amounts of venom are injected.

Largest toad

Largest toad

The largest toad is the cane or marine toad, native to South America. An average specimen weighs 450 g (1 lb).

"I'm very excited to get my edition of the Guinness World Records book. This is a great opportunity for all of my staff to get their faces known, their passions out there and show these wonderful reptiles to the entire world."

To read more about extraordinary creatures, pick up a copy of Guinness World Records: Amazing Animals.

Guinness World Records 2018 and Guinness World Records 2018 Gamer's Edition are also in stores now.

Guinness World Records 2018 collection