Burgers Zoo – Netherlands

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Burgers Zoo – Netherlands Burgers Zoo, named after the original owners, opened in 1913 and I one of the largest zoos in the Netherlands. It is a mix of old and new, like many old European zoos, but does not have many of the original buildings. There are several themed areas, when I visited I enjoyed many of the sections including the oceans, bush, desert, mangrove. Safari and the newest, Rimba (South Eastern Asian Rainforest). Much of the signage is supplemented in English too. The ocean section has two large tanks, each 3000000 litres, and in total there is 8000000 litres – sharks, state of the art coral and tropical fish. My least favourite exhibits were the gorillas and chimpanzee enclosure - this has altered little since it was built…
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Taiwan beauty snakes – Orthriophis taeniura friesei

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Taiwan beauty snakes - Orthriophis taeniura friesei   A large colourful Colubrid snake species that occurs  almost completely in Taiwan . A sub-species, other similar looking sub-species and the nominate occur throughout a wide range of South Eastern Asia. This sub-species can be a large snake, but slender, at a maximum of nearly 3 metres long – most grow to around 2 metres in captivity. When I first bred this species, from wild caught stock, in the 90’s large specimens were quite common, but most seem to be smaller nowadays. Their natural habitat varies, unlike several of the sub-species who mainly occur in caves – this sub-species can be found in wooded, agricultural, human residential and other areas. Often found climbing in trees, under debris and generally active (in the hot…
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Fan Foot Geckos – Ptyodactylus guttatus

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Fan Foot Geckos - Ptyodactylus guttatus (some imports are hasselquistii) A small to medium sized gecko species that commonly occurs in North Africa and western Asia.They are very adaptable as a species, and are found in a variety of habitats including around human habitation, wooded areas, stone walls, agricultural and many others. They can be found in relatively dry terrain, and also in more humid areas. In captivity they are easy to maintain. A vivarium measuring a minimum of 3x2x2 is fine, three feet tall would be better. Daytime temperatures should be in the region of around 30-32C, dropping by a few degrees at night – perhaps to around 22-25C. Lighting for species like this is a debatable topic, the more recent school of thought is to provide a “scattered”…
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Australian Outback

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    This part of the field trip to Australia takes us to the more exciting and herpetologically interesting red centre – Alice Springs and Uluru. Last months instalment brought some interesting reptiles, but of course the further north you go in Oz, the more reptiles there are to wet our appetite! I stayed in a small holding just outside of Alice springs, around 40 miles away down a sand road, out there it is very remote and even the main roads are very sporadically paved or tarmacked. The little hut I had managed to track down was perfect for anybody hunting reptiles and amphibians, remote and pretty much undisturbed (although a local rubbish dump proved very favourable hunting!). On the first morning it had been raining, and one of…
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DivideBuy Interest Free Credit

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Australia Fieldwork Trip – Part One

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On my way to Australia I stayed in Singapore for a few days. Singapore is known as an urban jungle, it is very green with lots of lush vegetation – not just parks and open spaces but also on top and sides of the buildings. I visited Singapore Botanical Gardens, a large park like expanse of trees and tropical plants. The first reptile I saw in Singapore was……. Wait for it………….. the Red Eared terrapin (Trachemys scripta elegans) – a once common pet species in the UK that originates from the Southern states of North America. Presumably they were, and maybe still are, a popular pet in Singapore and like the UK many have been released into the lakes in parks. The big difference is the climate allows this species…
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