Chat Transcript Aug 2001
Louis Porras

herpinboy - yes
matt2 - louie: I remember the 'Shed" from mnay years ago; how long did it last
burmesekid - burmesekid

- Fauna is a magazine that feaures herps and invertebrates, but it also deals with all kinds of other seldom seen wildlife
herpinboy - to many guests
jeffb - Matt2 go ahead
MsTT - hopes she's connected properly....hi, Louie. I got that Eastern diamdondback on cipro as per your suggestion.
matt2 - quiet, hb
herpinboy - :(
jeffb - Matt2 go ahead
matt2 - sorry; louis: I remember the "Shed" from manu yearas ago; how long did it last
LouiePorras - I was involved with The Shed from 1973 until 1981. After I left Miami Joe Beraducci continued with the business until 1984

CondaKeeper - Louis, what is your personal experience in the keeping of larger boids, and what in your opinion do you feel is the best husbandry technique(s)?
LouiePorras - While I was in the business we carried all kinds of large boids. As far as husbandry techniques, it would depend on the boid. What do you have in mind?
CondaKeeper - Large boa constrictors, and anacondas.

Dale4141 - What sets Fauna apart from the other mags out there?
LouiePorras - Anacondas, of course, have to be maintained warm and humid - with water where they can soak and yet in a place where water can be cleaned periodically, especially if they defecate or shed in the water. Boas - warm, and a place to hide and climb.
burmesekid - retics
LouiePorras - Over the top color, and not cluttered with ads
matt2 - Digg; you Q'
Digg003 - what do you feel are species common in the pet trade that shouldnt be there, because they are commonly mistreated or endangered?
Digg003 - had it alltyped out
CondaKeeper - :-)
Hi all
matt2 - Louie; since we have so many folks coming in..could you type next: so i can ask next person
LouiePorras - If you're set up to deal with any animal properly, then I have no problem with animals being in the trade. However, many species of chameleons are difficult to maintain and it bothers me to see them imported in large numbers.

burmesekid - what do u think about reticulated pythons in the pet trade
herpinboy - sorry
burmesekid - and there care in captivity
LouiePorras - I feel much the same way I do about keeping venomous snakes. A person should know what they're getting into before keeping large snakes such as retics

ericB - Do you have any reptiles, if so what kinds,
matt2 - sorry; louis; ya must be popular tonight
matt2 - hb: your question
LouiePorras - After 40+ years of kkeping herps, I don't have a collection any more. I did move to an area where there's a rattlesnake den a few minutes away, so that's kind of where am at these days

MsTT - Hi Louie. The vet got me that prescrip for cipro. $60 per vial, ow. And at the dose the vet said (.8CC for the 800g snake X 48 hours) it doesn't seem to be helping. What's my next move? I was thinking surgery with John Rossi, what do you suggest? I'll do whatever it takes to get that animal healthy.
LouiePorras - Have you had the vet run a fecal?
MsTT - Yes, the usual crud in the fecal.
MsTT - Administered Panacur 100 mg/kg, Flagyl 75 mg/kg twice now.

- how did you get started in herps, also you mentianed set up a herp properly, in your opion what is the best setup for a leopard gecko, thx :-}
MsTT - Louie: this is the Eastern diamondback you saw at my house.
matt2 - (guest will need to sign in or be jumped in asking q's)
dick - rdbartlett
LouiePorras - I got started in herps as a youngster, living in Cista Rica. As far as a leopard gecko setup, just be careful with the substrate. Leopard geckos often ingest sand, and some types of sand have jagged edges. I prefer the wild blown desert sand that's found in southern Utah...but not for hatchlings.
Rachel16 - cool, thx

SIRry - thanks for being here tonight Louie. My questions is; if your were say 21 in 2001, with all your knowlage and wizdom how would you start your herp career?
LouiePorras - I'd start by going out in the field as often as possible.

TxHerper - On the note of Chameleons, I am a chameleon breeder and see alot of mistreated animals in the trade. What is your view on this, and which do you think are the hardest to keep, or the ones which shouldn't be imported? I deal only in montane/horned chameleons so I am always interested in hearing others more experienced in the different chameleons veiws.
LouiePorras - We used to import so many different kinds of chameleons, and no matter what we tried our track record was not the best. I have no problem with Jacksons, veiled, Parson's etc., - the adapt so well - but I have a problem with seeing so many of the delicate Senagals.

burmesekid - Ok all the large boids what do you think is the best captive pet? thankz
LouiePorras - I happen to love boa constrictors...all types.

ClayD - Louie, I'm curious to know what you would consider your most satisfying achievement herpwise, be it breeding, discovering new species, etc. I was late geting in, hope this hasn't been asked.
LouiePorras - No it hasn't. I guess that my most satisfying achievement is some of the rattlesnake work I've been involved with in the Colorado Plateau.

Dale4141 - whats your outlook for the hobby with all of the legislation and bad press that seems to be getting worse with every year?
LouiePorras - I think the hobby will survive, but no doubt more and more laws will be coming into effect in the future. My advice would be to join PIJAC and become involved with problems that threaten herpetoculture.

David15 - I don't know how much you know about Collared Lizards but I have a question....I've had 3 for about a year now...2 1yr olds and a hatchling, well, recently, somebody posted pics of his hatchling collared's playing dead when they got scared, they would open their mouth and stretch out very stiff.... Is this normal behavior for baby lizards? or is something wrong with his? I've never see this behavior in collared's before.... Oh, the hatc
David15 - long question... :)
LouiePorras - I can only guess that it's diet related. The biggest problem I see with captive collareds is that they don't get the nourishment that they receive in nature. Their diet consists largely of lizards.

BradK - Louis, what is your favorite area in the world to field collect and what do you consider your favorite find ever?
David15 - (Thanks Louie)
LouiePorras - Here I'm real torn. I love Costa Rica, Peru, Arizoa, and my back yard...Utah.

fargo - in YOUR opinion can mealworms be a staple diet for a leopard gecko?

ericB - wat do you think of albigs, (white throat) monitors, have you ever had any experience with them before ?
LouiePorras - Many years a go there was a study done at one of the Texas univeristies where leopard geckos were raised exclusively on mealworms, and they did great. But I think this question should be directed to some of the larger leopard gecko breeders, like Ron Tremper.

timber - what is a good starter snake?
LouiePorras - Nothing beats a Corn snake

timber - do monitor lizards make good pets?

MsTT - I would love to hear more about the rattlesnake work. Please? :) The snake I was mentioning before was the Eastern diamondback with the mouth abcess you saw after the Daytona show, dunno if you caught that or not.
LouiePorras - Some do. For a starter lizard I would stay away from some of the marger Niles or Water monitors. Savannas would be a good starter monitor

SCBrian - Pass, Great Mag.

SirRy - what can you say about the crotalus horridus horridus timber rattler?
LouiePorras - It's a great animal that's disappearing in many parts of it's range. As far as it's taxonomic standing, it remains to be seen what the molecular information wil indicate.

SnakesAndStuff - What do you think about subspeciation of Crotalus horridus? I agree with the paper from '72 and consider all horridus one species with several different morphs. In the "pet" trade it seems that many people still consider them 2 subspecies, but in the scientific community they are monotypic. What are your thoughts on this?
SnakesAndStuff - Guess he just answered it

Barry--4 - As a collector of enomous snakes, I was hit by a zoonotic disease Para, and with excessive morhping for color varations deluting the natural gene pool, do you believe that ultimately private keepers will be the salvation or ruination of the animals they are trying to keep
LouiePorras - Again, we'll have to see what the molecular data shows. Some new markers (mtDNA ) may be useful in resolving the problem.
LouiePorras - next
matt2 - BradK:
BradK - how large is the current population of midget-faded rattlesnake in Utah, and have you any opinions upon its conservational status?

burmesekid - Yes, is it alright to feed baby chickens to pythons? there jsut so cheap.
LouiePorras - Midget Faded dens are few and far between in Utah, although the snake is found throughout a large area. Midget Fadeds, however, are fairly abundant in parts of SW Wyoming. As far as conservation status, in my opinion they're not threatened, but they are vulnerable. Dens could be wiped out in short order.

Dale4141 - predictions on the boa morph market, how long before it goes the way of the albino burm?
LouiePorras - It won't be as fast as the crash that happened with albino Burms. I'd say it will be a few years.

dick - Louie, did you ever go to the Osa after Coloptychon? if so , successful?/rdb
LouiePorras - No. But Alejandro Solorzano recently obtained a specimen. A pictorial will be featured in the Nov/Dec issue of Fauna.

David15 - One more Collared Liz Question... If I want to feed mine lizards what is a good (and cheap) type....I live south of Chicago so there's not much I can catch around here, so it's got to be from a store... I've heard that Anole's can be harmful because they usually have lots of bacteria in them.... The only other kind anybody's mentioned are House Geckos...are these ok? Any other Suggestions? Thanks!
LouiePorras - My suggestion would be to get some of the western lizards, like small Sceloporus or Uta.

ericB - what do you think of albigularis monitors (white throat monitor) have you ever had any experience with them?
LouiePorras - Yes I have. I think they're great lizards. I'm particularly fond of the ones from southern Africa.

MsTT2 - is still waiting for an answer to her previous question, but if it's too busy in here it's cool.
MsTT2 - Regarding the Eastern diamondback with the mouth abcess you suggested cipro for.
MsTT2 - Dosage.
LouiePorras - If you've already tubed it with cipro, run a fecal, gave it flagyl and Panacur...I don't know what to suggest, except that you give it some time to see if it responds. Often rattlesnakes that are run down take quite a long time to recover.

ScottsReptiles - who do you feel has had the most recent effect in the herp-world
LouiePorras - Roger Conant
LouiePorras - His field guide is the best selling herpetological book of all time, and has been the herpers bible (in the US) to nearly every herpetologist I know. For more information on Roger see the Sept/Oct issue of Fauna.

SnakesAndStuff - I think that in many cases molecular data (mtDNA, other DNA studies) are used to try to show taxanomic differences. I personally believe that many times these data are applied to animals which we currently don't know enough about the genome to be making these very specific conclusions. What is your opinion on the use of molecular studies on species that we don't have a mapped genome for?
LouiePorras - Besides mtDNA studies, it's also important to conduct field studies to examine all possible aspects of natural history. Morphological studies and other studies (such as venom) are also important and should be used in addition to molecular information.
SnakesAndStuff - thank you

- Quite a few tortoises have found their way into my home. The leopard tortoise gets dry skin from time to time. I give him soaks every few days, and hes taken outside for quite awhile each day. How can I cure his dry skin-in the winter hes even more dry. Could I put creams made for people (like Vaseline) on his skin? Hes very healthy, but I need to keep him on newspapers when hes inside, he wheezes with any other substrate, Ive tried many, a

ClayD - what is your opinion of the recent interest in hybridization in the hobby
LouiePorras - Hybridization in herpetoculture has been going on for a very long time, and since breeding animals to return to the wild presents many problems (and I'm opposed to it except in very special circumstances) doesn't bother me.

David15 - Anybody have any small Sceloporus or Uta for me?
LouiePorras - It's legal to colect them in Utah you may want to contact someone in this state.
LouiePorras - next

- I would like to put a collard lizard or leopard lizard or both in my cage with a female desert iguana. Do you have any tips on how to do this and be besrt for the lizards
matt2 - ericb

- have you ever felt with argentine tegus before such as the bl/wht's or the reds or the chocoan morph?
ericB - delt*
LouiePorras - Yes I have. Not much I can say except that they get big...but they're neat!

herpinboy - whats the worst bite you have had?
LeopardTort - dry skin on leopard totoise, would like to know if I can put any creams like Vasaline in his skin. Hes let outside a lot, inside some of the time on newspapers-he wheezes with any other substrate, but hes fine with newspapers. His skin is not so bad now, but it gets much more dry in the winter-it doesnt seem to affect him at all, no sticky eyes, but it gets pretty chapped and sometimes it gets pink. He gets a good soak every 3 days or so.
LouiePorras - A checkered garter snake in south Texas. My hand swelled up for several days!

LeopardTort - sorry, I did not mean to put that!!!!!!!!!!!1

MsTT2 - What do you think of horridus and atricaudatus being grouped together, when their life history and habits are so different? I'm not sure I can agree with the regrouping even if the DNA is the same. How do you decide how to group when the DNA and the natural history evidence seem to conflict?
LouiePorras - I have my own opinion as to the systematic arrangement of horridus. I't something our research group is looking into and I'm afraid I can't comment at this time.

matt2 - Louie: we're coming up on thye hour; would you like to continue for one half an hour

SCBrian - With the recent "Ivory" Tortoise now in the trade, how long do you think it will take to see other morphs? Ie. Black/ etc.
LouiePorras - I think it will take time. Odd tortoises just don't seem to be as common in the trade as other herps.

ScottsReptiles - what are your opinions on the 'tracking chips' and other means that might arise to track and monitor reptile keeping and why
LouiePorras - I haven't heard much about them. I guess they would work.

ScottsReptiles - well.. would you disapprove or approve of such a measure
LouiePorras - On the surface I guess I woukd approve, but I'd have to get more info to see what this is all about

Digg003 - I would like to put a collard lizard or leopard lizard or both in a cage with a femal desert iguana. Do you have any tips on how to do this or things I should have in order to do this so it benifits the lizards the most?

- Have u or do u have an interest in arachnids?
LouiePorras - Yes I do. I particularly enjoy Theraphosid spiders, and in the coming issue of Fauna we have a 12 page pictorial that features a number of undescribed taxa. Rick West was our consultant.

- Still the same leopard tortoise question, which I got passed up on because i accidentaly put it (please be nice to new people!!!!) I would like to know if I can put creams on my leopard torts skin like Vasaline, his skin is dry, hes on newspaper when hes not outside becasue of wheezing, Im sure you read the rest!!!!!! Its not fair that I was put all the way to the back of the line, I did not put any of that on purpose, I would just liek to know

MsTT2 - Anything else you feel like sharing about the interesting Crotalus work would be appreciated. :)
LouiePorras - You know, I'm not really sure. I've had problems putting any kind of oily substance on the skin of lizards and snakes. This would be a good question for a good reptile vet. Sorry I don't have the answer.

SCBrian - Other than PIJAC what do you see as the best way to defend our hobby?

Randal - Louie, what's going on with your paper or studies, on Lachesis? You know I'm dying to know! And will you buy me a beer in Housto
LouiePorras - In order to defend our hobby we must be organized. PIJAC just seems to have been around for so much longer than other groups, and Marshall Myers (their attorney) is perhaps the most knowledgeble person in this country with regard to animal legislation.

ClayD - if you had to name a single area of herpetology/herpetoculture, which would you consider the most in need of study?
LouiePorras - Without a doubt...amphibians - especially on account of their declining populations

Crazyherp - I have a 20" G. Sulcata tortoise that tends to wobble back and forth when walking, and sometimes loses balance all together and then just lays down Any opinions?

Cougarnw - Which area/country needs more research performed in order to better catalogue their species?
LouiePorras - Hard to could be an injury, infection, parasites, old age etc.

Culebra - In Canada tortoises are difficult to import from the us..but i'm woking onthe import export permit..the federal red tape, provincial laws etc...I was wonder what the status on captive asian forest tortoises is like in the states, guess i'm wondering if it is worth the time and effort?
LouiePorras - I've been out of the import export business since '95, so I'm not up to speed as to what the status of captive Asian tortoises in in this country. Perhaps Rob at Glades Herp would have the answers.

matt2 - ok; folks we have run outa our time time on here, and very much wish to thank Mr. Louis Parras for his tim

epgrllikes2party - I was wondering how I should get started in the the herp industry, I currently have two bearded dragons and I leopard gecko I was wondering if getting into the morphs of balls was better or red ackies or bearded dragons?

LeopardTort - Do WC Eastern Box turtles have a lot of parasites? I am iterested in purcasing a breeding pair from a local pet store, but I would like to know before I do, I will not purchase any, I dont want parasites in case they may affect my other torts, the pet store says that there is no parasites on the turtles, they re repuatable, but I would like to make sure, and what do mites look like on turtles? My little guys here have never had any, and I want

Cougarnw - Porras--thank you for coming
Randal - Louie,
LeopardTort - just when the list got to me it ended-AGAIN!~!!! lol
LouiePorras - Hey everybody....gotta run...thanks and good night LP :)
Mickey_TLK - goodbye louie