December 14, 2010
Opening with a puff adder (one of the more dangerous snakes that could be found around our house when we lived in the bushveld of South Africa), this Life in Cold Blood segment moves on to show a python eating a deer. David Attenborough narrates:
November 17, 2010
Section A of fragment 9BbQpap
This is the twelfth edition of House of Herps, so that means I have the honour of presenting the last post for the first year of this blog carnival. In the scheme of things, a year is not much, but I thought this would be a good time to present a little known but ancient antecedent to House of Herps.
What follows is the first publication of select verses from the Munchhausen¹ papyrus, a 2000 year-old document now known as The Book of Serpent. Like the related document, The Gospel of Judas, it is one of many church-rejected apocryphal books that ran parallel with, and some times counter to, the canonical books established at the Synod of Hippo in 393 CE. The Book of Serpent was considered particularly heretical due to the sect that formed around it in 325 CE.
read more »
November 8, 2010
I’m hosting the November edition of the House of Herps– if you have any reptile or amphibian blog posts to submit, please do so by November 15th! This will be a carnival of Biblical proportions that you won’t want to misssss…
October 18, 2010
We have the twin spectacle of two great blog carnivals showing up on the same day: House of Herps (the creatures, not the disease) is doing a rain-dance at Mainly Mongoose, a cool South African-based site run by zoologist Lynda.
And for the beetle lovers among you (and who couldn’t be?) An Inordinate Fondness has gone next door, to roost at Beetles in the Bush.
May 29, 2010
A Western Diamondback Rattler, from Reptile World, Drumheller, Alberta.
The largest of the rattlesnakes, this pit viper has been recorded at over 2 m (6 ft.) long. The Western Diamondback Rattlesnake (Crotalus atrox) is the target of the infamous Rattlesnake Roundup in Texas:
The project was originaly conceived by a group of area farmers and ranchers as an attempt to rid the abundance of Rattlers that were plaguing them and their livestock. The event has grown over the past 51 years to the “WORLD’S LARGEST RATTLESNAKE ROUND-UP” with over 123 tons of Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes turned in to date.
Despite the harvest, Diamondback Rattlers are not considered threatened at this time. However, the round-ups hearken back to an era of ignorance and superstition and are no longer justifiable. See the American Society of Ichthyologists and herpetologists position paper on Rattlesnake roundups for more information on rattlesnakes and their importance within an ecosystem.
Interested in collecting snakes? See how not to handle a rattler, from National Geographic.
May 21, 2010
Morelia amethistina, the Amethystine Python
Found in Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and the rainforest areas of Australia, this python can reach a length of over 4m, with one record of an 8.5m specimen found in tropical North Queensland. As a juvenile it will spend most of its time in trees, feeding on bats and birds. Adults spend more time on the ground, and are capable of taking prey as large as wallabies. This portrait was photographed (through glass) at Reptile World in Drumheller, Alberta.
October 16, 2009
“The tiny Brazilian pygmy gecko has skin that is water repellent so it can’t sink. Thanks to its hyrdphobic skin it floats – and evens stands – on water.”