Day 29- Web Footed Gecko

Day #29 (3/18/2014) Web Footed Gecko

      We decided to head to Africa for the week! We headed to the Sahara desert on our first day to find a special little reptile. After settling in to camp and making sure all our stuff was bagged up to keep it sand free. We grab our hats, mud sunscreen and binoculars and headed out on today’s adventure! It took us a while to find the Web Footed Gecko, but we did find it!

e e desert

       Their range/habitat: Western Southern Africa/desert

      Their length/weight: 4 ¾ -5 ½”  Conservation Status: common

      Their diet: Carnivore: insects

web footed gecko

  • Web Footed Geckos are pink with dark markings.
  • They have webbed feet that helps them run across the sand.
  • Web Footed Geckos have large eyes.
  • They dig long tunnels in the sand for shelter.
  • They drink water that condenses on their skin overnight.
  • Web footed geckos have wide range of vocalizations.

web footed gecko2

These teeny little geckos were hard to spot! They blend right in to their desert homes! They have such amazing adaptations for living in a harsh habitat. We sure were tired after spending the day in the hot desert. We were happy that we bought plenty of water and hay snacks.

-Ellie  and Edmond

Day 7- Common Boa

Day #7 (1/14/2014) Common Boa

      We spent our day in the rainforest again. This time we had our guide help us find a reptile. Many of us have seen this snake in zoos and nature centers, but we really want to see one in the wild. It took us quite a while to locate this snake because their camouflage is amazing! We finally spotted one late in the afternoon!

e & e rainforest

Their range and habitat: Central-South America/forest, desert, grasslands

Their length:  3 ¼-13 ft  Their status: common

They are carnivores (small mammals, birds)

common boa

Common Boas vary in color depending on their habitat.

They are up to 10 subspecies.

Common boas are excellent climbers.

They are constrictors.

Common boas are nocturnal.

common boa2

 

It was such a fun adventure to look for the common boa today! Trying to spot an animal who has amazing camouflage made for such a great day. You must be on the lookout at all times! We’re glad we spotted one in a tree and not up close. We’re going to end the day with some apple cider and smores at camp!

-Ellie and Edmond

SEA TURTLE COLORING SHEET!

SEA TURTLE COLORING SHEET!

  We’ve got a sea turtle for you today! We left the shell blank so you can make it what species you like! Will you make a Leatherback, Green, Loggerhead, Kemps Ridley, Hawksbill, Olive Ridley or Flatback?

Share your art with us!

sea turtle coloring page

REPTILIAN TUESDAY # 87

REPTILIAN TUESDAY # 87

We’re off to woods near our headquarters today! We’re in search of a really cool reptile! We’ll be looking in the local rivers, so grab your wellies and your hats and let’s head out on today’s adventure.

e & e wetlands

MEET THE COMMON SNAPPING TURTLE!

common snapping turtle3   Range/Habitat: Central-Eastern North America-Central America/

   wetlands, rivers

   Diet: Omnivore: small mammals, fish, plants, invertebrates

   Length: 10-18”

   Conservation Status: common

 

Fun Facts:

  •          Common snapping turtles have large heads.
  •          Their carapaces are often covered in algae.
  •          Common snapping turtles often lie on the bottom of a body of water buried in the mud.
  •          The actively forage for food or they ambush prey using a small appendage in their mouth as a lure.
  •          Common snapping turtles are very territorial.

Common snapping turtles are smaller than their larger alligator snapping turtle cousins. They are pretty sneaky when they lay on the bottom on the river waiting for prey to come swimming by! SNAP!!

common snapping turtle2   common snapping turtle

REPTILIAN TUESDAY #86

REPTILIAN TUESDAY # 86

We’re off to Africa today to meet a very intimidating snake. Pack your gear and your passport and let’s load up the E & E safari van. Don’t forget your long lens for your camera and your binoculars, because we are staying in the vehicle to find this animal!

e & e safari van

MEET THE RED SPITTING COBRA!

red spitting cobra   Range/Habitat: Northeast Africa/ grasslands, desert

   Diet: Carnivore: small mammals

   Length: 28-47”

   Conservation Status: common

 

Fun Facts:

  •          Red spitting cobras will shoot venom if they are threatened.
  •          They can shoot the venom up to 6 ½ ft away.
  •          Red spitting cobras’ venom can cause blindness.
  •          Red spitting cobras are nocturnal.
  •          They have narrow hoods.
  •          Red spitting cobras have a black band of color across their necks.

Red spitting cobras are definitely amazing. They are also a snake that needs respect! We’ll give them that respect from at least 20 ft away!

red spitting cobra2   red spitting cobra3

REPTILIAN TUESDAY # 85

REPTILIAN TUESDAY # 85

Happy Reptilian Tuesday! We’ve backed our bags and heading back to the U.S. to a desert habitat. Grab your sunscreen and your sunglasses and hats and let’s go find today’s reptile friend!

e e desert

MEET THE DESERT HORNED LIZARD!

desert horned lizard   Range/Habitat: Southwestern U.S.A.

   Diet: Carnivore: ants, insects

   Length: 3-5 ¼”

   Conservation Status: common

 

 

Fun Facts:

  •          Desert Horned lizards have excellent camouflage.
  •          They have “horns” or pointy scales on their head and neck.
  •          Desert horned lizards have round shaped bodies and are nicknamed Horned Toads.
  •          They can remain motionless for long periods in order to protect themselves.
  •          They can also inflate themselves with air if attacked by a predator.
  •          Desert horned lizards hibernate in the winter.

Desert horned lizards have some great defense mechanisms. They look like mini dinosaurs if you ask us! If they only had some feathers too!

desert horned lizard2  desert horned lizard3

REPTILIAN TUESDAY #84

REPTILIAN TUESDAY # 84

We’re going to Baja. California today to meet a cute little reptile! They look like a lizard that we know well. These little lizards hide under vegetation and rocks, so we’ll have to use our best observation skills. We’re excited to take a road trip and find a new friend! Who is ready to join us?

e e park

MEET THE PINK TAILED SKINK!

pink tailed skink    Range/Habitat: Mexico-Baja California/ forests, suburbs

    Diet: Carnivore: insects, spiders

    Length: 6 ½-8”

    Conservation Status: common

 

Fun Facts:

  •          Pink tailed skinks are also known as the San Lucas skink.
  •          They have a bright pink tails as juveniles. The tails dull in color as they get older.
  •          Pink tailed skinks are brown with cream stripes on their backs.
  •          Pink tailed skinks can lose their tail if caught by a predator.
  •          Female pink tailed skinks lay eggs and stay with them until the babies hatch.

Pink tailed skinks look very much like the blue tailed skinks that live in our area. They are very fast little reptiles! We love trying to find them basking in the sun! Do you have any small lizards living in your neighborhood?

(We could one get one picture of this little guy)

REPTILIAN TUESDAY #83

REPTILIAN TUESDAY # 83

 We’re off to Africa today to meet a breakfast tortoise! Hahaha- ok they won’t be making us breakfast and we’ll not be eating with them but they are quiet flat!  Flat you say? Flat! Come meet…

e e desert

MEET THE PANCAKE TORTOISE!

   Range/Habitat: E Africa (Tanzania/Kenya)/rocky outcrops and savannas

   Diet: Herbivore: grasses, leaves, fruit

   Length/Weight: 5 ½”-7”/ 1 lb

   Conservation Status: Vulnerable

 

 

 

Fun Facts:

  • Pancake Tortoises have flat carapaces (top shell) that are flexible. This is a very unusual adaptation.
  • Pancake tortoises can squeeze into narrow crevices. This helps protect them from predators.
  • They don’t move to far from their shelter.
  • Pancake tortoises are actually quick and agile climbers.
  • They live in small colonies and share their shelters.
  • They can live up to 25 years old.
  • Pancake tortoises are crepuscular (most active at dusk and dawn).

Pancake tortoises are really neat little tortoises with their flat shells and ability to climb. And they have pancake in their name and who doesn’t love pancakes!

pancake tortoise   pancake tortoise2

 

GREATEST HITS- REPTILIAN TUESDAY

GREATEST HITS- REPTILIAN TUESDAY

We’re off to the rainforests of Central America to meet a really cool reptile that has a special adaptation! Can you run on top of water? We didn’t think so! Let’s head out on today’s adventure!

MEET THE PLUMED BASILISK!

   Range/Habitat: Central America/ rainforests-wetlands

   Diet: Omnivore: insects, rodents, fruits

   Length: 23 ½-30”

   Conservation Status: common

 

 

 

Fun Facts:

  • Plumed Basilisks are arboreal (they live in trees).
  • They live near streams and rivers.
  • Plumed basilisks run across the surface of the water on their hind feet.
  • Plumed basilisks have 3 crests on body; on their head, back and tails.
  • They are excellent swimmers and can stay under water for 30 minutes.
  • Male plumed basilisks are very territorial. They preside over a territory with numerous females.

These lizards are sooo cool! Can you believe they can run on water? We wish we could do that, alas we only doggie paddle, or elephant and horse paddle in this case!

  

AMAZING ANIMAL FACTS- REPTILES AND AMPHIBIANS!

AMAZING ANIMAL FACTS- REPTILES & AMPHIBIANS!

We’ve found some great reptile facts today! What’s your favorite reptile fact?

e & e eco explorers

1. A MUDPUPPY HAS 30 TIMES MORE DNA, IN EACH CELL, THAN A HUMAN DOES.

That is just cool!

mudpuppy2

2. CHAMELEONS CHANGE THEIR COLOR DUE TO THEIR EMOTIONAL STATE NOT TO CAMOUFLAGE IN WITH THEIR HABITAT!

Feeling blue today?

chameleon

3. CROCODILES AND ALLIGATORS CAN NOT STICK THEIR TONGUES OUT!

Aw man! Now how do I tell Bob off?

alligator

4. SOUTHERN CRICKET FROGS CAN JUMP TO A HEIGHT OF 60 TIMES ITS BODY!

Whaaaaaa? Take that frog to a jumping contest!

southern criket frog

5. ONE BITE FROM A KING COBRA (around 7 milliliters) CAN KILL 20 HUMANS.

Best to leave this guy alone!

king cobra