Herper.com: Reptiles and Amphibians

Reptiles and Amphibians in the News

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Somebody Lied

Moody Garden's viper really did escape, and wasn't just camouflaged in the vivarium. Officials admit that it was found on the outside of the cage. (News source.)

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Smugglers Intercepted

2 tons of live snakes and 770 kg of tortoises were intercepted in Vietnam before they could be taken into China. (News source.)

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Turtle Helps Police

NPS employees followed a GPS-outfitted box turtle to a marijuana crop at Rock Creek Park. (News source.)

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Croc Exhibits

First, Crocodile Swamp opens at the Paignton Zoo (UK). (News source.)

And, a Kendrapara museum (India) has what may be the country's largest preserved crocodile skull. (News source.)

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Alligator Attacks Boy

A pre-teen boy was attacked by an alligator while swimming in a Louisiana pond. His arm was ripped off. The boy is currently hospitalized. (News source.)

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Fang Research

Interesting developmental biology research into the formation of snake fangs here.

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Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Fossil Croc

Another giant species of fossil gavial-like crocodilian has been discovered in South America. (News source.)

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Sea Turtle Egg Poaching

The Florida nest of a loggerhead sea turtle was torn open and the eggs poached. Other nests were also disturbed and possibly robbed. (News source.)

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Snakes in the News

A Nigerian woman died after being bitten by a snake while fishing. (News source.)

University of Washington and Guam are collaborating on a brown tree snake research project. (News source.)

A UK vet is warning of an antivenom shortage for adder bites. (News source.)

The rare Tucson shovel-nosed snake may be starting a political battle soon, as the USFWS is evaluating its status. (Here and here.)

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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Snake Bites in the News

An 11-year old child in Florida was apparently bitten by a cottonmouth. (News source.)

A 10-year old girl in the UK was bitten by an adder. (News source.)

And an article here on rattlesnake bites in California.

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Sunday, July 27, 2008

Snakebite Attraction?

A 56-year old woman in India has been bitten by snakes (including venomous species) at least 70 times over the last 30 years. Neighbors think she's under a curse. (News source.)

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For those who haven't had time to go field herping this year...

Northern red-bellied snakes. (News article.)
Northern brown snakes. (News article.)

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Saturday, July 26, 2008

Anaconda Linguistics

The name Anaconda first came from Sri Lanka, not South America, and the linguistic origins have an interesting history.

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Frog Jumping

Photos here from a Connecticut frog jumping contest.

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Dachshund vs Mojave Green

A rare survival? A miniature dachshund was successfully treated for a bite by a Mojave green rattlesnake. (News source.)

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Dead Turtles

Sea turtles killed by fishing nets (probably) have been washing up on Mexico beaches. (News source.)

And, an adult snapping turtle found near Corvalis, Oregon, was decapitated by ODFW when they couldn't find a home for her. (News source.)

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Friday, July 25, 2008

Don't Feed the Gators

Some Florida airboat captains have been arrested for feeding alligators to impress the tourists. (News source.)

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Thursday, July 24, 2008

India: Snake Charmers "Purify"

"Snake charmers are fast disappearing from this city, but one section that calls itself the 'Manasar Banshadhar' continues to hold on to the profession, claiming their intention is not to entertain but to purify souls. They, however, often end up scaring people." (More at News source.)

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Croc Attack in West Bengal

A woman in West Bengal, India, was killed by a crocodile while fishing. (News source.)

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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

New Toad in Ecuador

From Zootaxa:

A new species of Osornophryne (Anura: Bufonidae) from the Andean highlands of northern Ecuador
Andrew G. Gluesenkamp (USA) & Juan M. Guayasamin (Ecuador)
Zootaxa 1828: 18-28 (23 Jul. 2008) 5 plates; 15 references
Abstract here.

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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

West Nile and Gator Farming

The Louisiana alligator conservation program has to deal with west nile virus problems... (News source.)

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Monday, July 21, 2008

Gecko Endangered

There are concerns in India about the future of the banded ground gecko. (News source.)

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Rattlesnake News

A California girl was bitten on the toe by a rattlesnake. (News source.)

An Illinois wildlife center has bred ridge-nosed rattlesnakes. (News source.)

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Croc Attack

A fisherman in India was killed by a crocodile while helping to set out a net. (News source.)

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Dry Bite in California

A National Guard crewman in California received a dry bite from a rattlesnake. (News source.)

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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Crocodilians in the News

South African crocs are being hit with a mystery ailment. (News source.)

Sri Lanka officials seized crocodile meat from a poacher. (News source.)

Alligator egg collection for Florida's alligator farms is in progress. (News source.)

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Copperhead Bite

A man and his 3-year old daughter were bitten by a copperhead in North Carolina. (News source.)

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What Not To Do (With a Snapping Turtle)

Don't do this.


Friday, July 18, 2008

Leopard vs. Crocodile

Fascinating photos taken of a leopard taking down a small crocodile here.

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Cane Toad Snake Snack

A cane toad was photographed chowing down on a keelback in Australia. (News source.)

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

OOP Reptiles

A few of the more significant finds recently:

A reticulated python in Maine. (News source.)

A small alligator caught in Illinois. (News source.)

A gator reported in Horsham, PA. (News source.)

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More research here on leatherback migration routes.

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Copperhead Bites

Two North Carolina men have been bitten by copperheads recently. (News source.)

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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Croc Attacks

Four people have been injured in crocodile attacks recently, near Bhitarkanika National Park (India). (News source.)

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Monday, July 14, 2008

Red Filters for Turtles

Red filters are being installed on lights on a Florida beach, which are less attractive to hatchling sea turtles. It is hoped this will keep the turtles from heading the wrong way after hatching. (News source.)

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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Man vs Crocodile

India's government has an effective crocodilian conservation program, leading to greater numbers of formerly endangered species, but is meeting resistance from villagers on the outskirts of sanctuaries who end up in conflict with the growing population of crocs. A number of people have been killed by the reptiles, leading to attacks on other crocodiles. (News source.)

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Parasites Continue to Kill

An infestation of bristleworms continues to kill Australian chelonians. (News source.)

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India Snakebites

A 30-year old snake handler/rescuer was bitten by a cobra, but died due to out-of-stock antivenom at local hospitals. (News source.)

A 4-year old boy died from a snakebite. (News source.)

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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Frog & Toad News

An orange-morph garden frog was found in the UK. (News source.)

Researchers are using a "robo-frog" to test mating call variations. (
News source.)

Fewer than 1% of all cane toad hatchlings survive to adulthood in Australia, but that small number is still a threat, increasing the population. (
News source.)

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Haast Honored

Miami gave venom pioneer Bill Haast the key to the city. (News source.)

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Baking Soda for Frogs?

A Hawaii man says that baking soda will kill the invasive coqui, but that the manager of the official frog control program won't listen to him. (News source.)

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Kentucky Snake Bust

Kentucky Reptile Zoo is over 100 venomous snakes richer, after KY wildlife officers seized them and arrested 10 snake dealers, and donated the snakes to the facility. Venomous snakes are illegal in KY. (News source.)

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More Snake Bites

An 11-year old Texas girl was bitten by a copperhead. (News source.)

A 69-year old man (in or near New York) was bitten by a timber rattlesnake he kept as a pet. (News source.)

And, some details here on a California kingsnake found eating a rattlesnake.

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Thursday, July 10, 2008

Frog News

Dead frogs were the clue to busting a cigarette smuggler in Malaysia... (News source.)

And, an article on female frog's picking out their mates call here.

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Too Close for Comfort

A woman's croc story here...


Bush Viper Lost, then Found

It didn't escape or get eaten by a cagemate -- the bush viper that supposedly disappeared from its cage at Moody Gardens (Galveston, TX) turned out to just be well-hidden in the cage's foliage. (News source.)

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Snake Bites

A Washington state man was bitten by a rattlesnake after picking it up, and carrying it around in a bag. (News source.)

A 3-year old girl suffered a dry bite by a pygmy rattlesnake in Florida. (News source.)

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Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Croc News

A Florida man was caught poaching alligator eggs. (News source.)

A Bangladesh crocodile farm is becoming successful. (News source.)

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Monday, July 7, 2008

Invasive Snappers

The introduced snapping turtle is spreading in Oregon. (News source.)

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Pygmy Rattler Bite at Wal-Mart

A man was bitten by a pygmy rattlesnake when he picked up a potted plant at a Florida Wal-Mart. (News source.)

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Snake Sticks Wanted

Kerala, India, snake-catchers want the government to buy them professional "snake sticks" (tongs) for dealing with dangerous species. (News source.)

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Sunday, July 6, 2008

Another Symbol for Florida

Keep in mind Florida already has a state reptile (the alligator) and recently made the loggerhead the state saltwater reptile; now a Senator has passed classroom-based legislation making the gopher tortoise a state symbol -- the state tortoise. (News source.)

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Dogs and Snakes

A dog in Taiwan attacked a cobra before it could bite its master. The dog died from envenomation, as antivenom wasn't available. (News source.)

The owners of a dog in California credit a rattlesnake venom vaccine for saving their dog's life after being bitten twice. (News source.)

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Saturday, July 5, 2008

Coqui Eradication Working

A coqui infested site Kaua‘i has been successful in eliminating most of the invasive frogs. (News source.)

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Turtle News

Blanding's turtles were released into the wild in Nova Scotia. (News source.)

Strictly Reptiles is in trouble again, this time for selling undersized turtles. (News source.)

Poached tortoises were confiscated in Malaysia. (News source.)

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Thursday, July 3, 2008

Croc News

40 mugger crocodiles have hatched out at the Arignar Anna Zoological park in India. (News source.)

Police shot a 14-foot crocodile stalking a village in the Solomon Islands. (News source.)

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Snake News

An (illegally owned) pet coral snake escaped from a home in Idaho. (News source.)

A dog-walker in the UK was bitten by an adder. (News source.)

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Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Rescuer or Trader?

An Indian man was arrested with a good number of snakes that he says he rescued (with some supplied to university for research), but officials say are illegally being supplied to the black market. (News source.)

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Tuatara Troubles

Temperature-dependent sex determination could be a problem for future generations of tuataras. (News source.)


Turtle Transmissions

Tracking devices have been placed on nine loggerhead sea turtles from an Australian population for research purposes. (News source.)

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Live Fast, Die Young

An unusual species of Madagascar chameleon, Furcifer labordi, lives only 4 to 5 months after hatching. (Eurekalert)

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NZ Skink Recovery

Endangered skinks in New Zealand are rebounding due to captive breeding and predator control. (News source.)

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Turtle Eggs Poached

Brunei officials seized 2900 turtle eggs poached and smuggled in from another country. (News source.)

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Florida Symbol

The loggerhead sea turtle has been designated Florida's state saltwater reptile. (News source.)

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