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Monthly Archives: April 2010

A Giant, Dinosaur-Eating Crocodile Once Roamed the American Southeast

Recent (March, 2010) findings by Paleontologists at Georgia’s Columbus State University helped bring to light the habits of Deinosuchus, a 29-foot-long crocodile that inhabited the region some 79 million years ago.

Uncovering an Ancient Story

As I mentioned when writing about an extinct snake recently (please see article below), its common knowledge that reptiles resembling those we know today lived alongside dinosaurs.  However, physical evidence of this really makes the story come to life for me.

In this case, the evidence consisted of bite marks on dinosaur bones and the contents of fossilized feces (known to those who study such things as “coprolites”). Read More »

Meet the Green Frog – the USA’s Typical Pond Frog – Part 1

Green Frog
Green Frogs (Lithobates/Rana clamitans) and their tadpoles are often the first species to be collected by curious children exploring the great outdoors. They make hardy and interesting pets – so much so that experienced herp-keepers, myself included, often make room for a pair in their collections. Overlooking this fascinating frog because it is so common is a big mistake! Today I’d like to provide a short introduction, followed by care and natural history details next time. Read More »

New Edition of Newts and Salamanders, A Complete Pet Owner’s Manual, is Published

Barred Tiger SalamanderI’ve recently finished writing a revision of my 1997 book Newts and Salamanders and would like to introduce it here and to thank everyone for their past support and kind comments.

Care and Natural History

Although technically a captive care manual, I’ve included a great deal of natural history information garnered from a lifetime of working with amphibians as well as research updates from technical and popular journals.  Captive breeding is stressed, with specific advice given for each species covered.  Read More »

“Help! My Ball Python Won’t Eat” – The Troublesome Habits of a Popular Snake – Part 1

Pet Ball Python, LucyAlso known as the Royal Python (Python regius), this smallest of Africa’s pythons is also the one best suited for captivity…one Ball Python lived at the Philadelphia Zoo for a record 47.6 years.  However, even long-term captives often exhibit the disturbing habit of refusing food for long periods.  This tendency is the source of a great many questions that I receive from both neophyte and well-experienced snake keepers. Read More »

Spiny-Tailed Agamids – the Fascinating Lizards of the Genus Uromastyx -Part 2

Please see Part I of this article for information on the natural history of the Spiny-Tailed Agamids (also know as Dabb Lizards or Mastigures).

Tempting, but….

Uromastyx hardwickiiUnfortunately, Dabb Lizards are difficult to resist, and hobbyists sometimes jump at the chance to own them without realizing what is involved in their care.  They require large enclosures, and many individuals become stressed if unable to construct the long burrows that are their natural retreats.  Read More »

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