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News & Events: Herp Photo of the Day: Happy Rattlesnake Friday! . . . . . . . . . .  Western Maryland Reptile Show - Mar. 03, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  Jacksonville Herp Society Meeting - Mar. 03, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  Greater Cincinnati Herp Society Meeting - Mar. 07, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  ReptiCon Jacksonville - Mar. 10-11, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  ReptiCon Denver - Mar. 10-11, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  All Maryland Reptile Show - Mar. 10, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  York County Reptile Show - Mar. 11, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  Repticon at Super Pet Expo D.C. Metro - Mar. 16-18, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  Richmond Reptile Expo - Mar. 17, 2018 . . . . . . . . . .  NARBC Tinley Park - Mar. 17-18, 2018 . . . . . . . . . . - Friday, Feb 23, 2018

Happy Rattlesnake Friday! Massive support is needed in the conservation of the gorgeous Massasauga Rattlesnake all across the country. That is why they take the spotlight today in our herp photo of the day uploaded by user ratsnakehaven ! Be sure to tell them you liked it here!

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Featured Contributors

A Mock Viper
Richard Bartlett - Wednesday, Feb 21, 2018

As an adult, the mock viper attains a length of only 15 inches.

Hirnan, our boat captain, was not a great fan of snakes. Frogs, salamanders, turtles, crocodilians, lizards were all OK, but when snakes were encountered, they and Capitan Hirnan quickly parted company.

We had been were on a discus (tropical fish) finding foray along waterways on the Peruvian side of the Rio Putumayo, a river that serves as a border between Peru and Colombia. The search took us up and back along many creeks, and I usually found time for at least a cursory search for herps.

At most stops we found anoles, geckos, and at least a few fer-de-lance. The presence of the latter kept us all on our toes, but none of us moreso than Hirnan. But there was this one memorable stop—the one where there seemed to be a fer-de-lance near every tree and a few just coiled quietly in the rather tall grass. So Hirnan did what every human who is adverse to snakes would do. He reached down and picked up a fair-sized limb, about 8 feet long, to brush the pit vipers out of the way. Happily Hirnan lifted the improvised snake stick, brought it upwards to a vertical position, let out a scream, and headed, on the run, back to the boat? Apparently a small snake, a mock viper, Thamnodynastes pallidus, had n crawling over the limb, held to and been lifted to a position over Hirnan,s head, lost its grip and fallen on his shoulder.

What’s that saying about the best laid plans of mice and men?

Continue reading "A Mock Viper"

Grotto Salamanders
Richard Bartlett - Monday, Feb 19, 2018

This is a large adult grotto salamander from deep in a Missouri cave.
We were looking for a cave. Road 1 took us about 3 miles in the right direction and then we encountered a fence. The GPS hadn’t foreseen that. Back we went to the main highway. Road #2, same scenario. We were about ready to give up but before quitting decided to try road #3. 2 miles no fence yet. 4 miles, still no fence. Could it be possible? Could this bumpy dirt road be the right one?

Jake and I had spent a few days photographing salamanders in Arkansas, and had only 2 more caudatan taxa targeted. One was the widespread cave dweller, Eurycea spelaea, the grotto salamander. This is a unique beast. The adults, terrestrial and 4 to 5 inches long, are cave dwellers with atrophied eyes while the larvae, which may live either in or out of the home cave, have well developed eyes.

Arkansas is both a land of caves and of salamanders, but not too many of the former remain open to the public, and of these not all can boast populations of the latter, the grotto salamander. We had been assured that the cave for which we searched fulfilled both hopes admirably. So we floundered onward.
We passed through a small village, then a few isolated homesteads. Finally encouragement--a pretty stream appeared, followed by a widened spot where we parked. Up the mountain we went, around an abutment, and…ah ha! A cave! We were there. And better yet, we found that once we had entered and passed beyond the twilight zone with its resident dark-sided salamanders, in the zone of perpetual darkness, the realm of the grotto salamander, Eurycea spelaea awaited. Success. Thanks again, Brad B.
Continue reading "Grotto Salamanders"
More Featured Articles
  - A Mock Viper
  - Grotto Salamanders
  - Pink Coachwhips
  - Sonoran Sidewinder
  - Pinto or Variable Chuckwalla
  - Northern Crawfish Frogs
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  - Snake-Proof Wall to be built around Everglades
  - Indian Star Tortoise Nesting Dedication
  - Cane Toads and Their Living Canteens
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  - The Four Fs: The Struggle is Real!
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  - Extreme conditions call for Extreme Adaptations
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  - Is Brumation Necessary for Reproduction?
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  - Definitely NOT a Stay-at-home, The Invasive Red-eared S...
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  - Forgotten Imports--Anurans
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