Posts Tagged ‘reptiles

26
Dec
13

Today’s theme is ‘Sleep’

At a recent visit to Taronga Zoo, I was occasionally surprised to find an animal that was awake.

chimpanzeeschimpanzees

The Chimpanzees were all enjoying a rest, including new mother, Kuma, with her baby, born in October, Fumo.

Not to be outdone:

Small Fox

Fenec Fox,

Snoozetime Turtle

Turtle,

Whacked

Tasmanian Devil

Asleep or dead

and a Tapir that looks almost dead.

It wasn’t a hot day, but it must have been a busy week.

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02
Dec
13

Ages of Komodo

A couple of photos showing stages in a Komodo Dragon’s life:

Komodo dragon baby

The young dragon is a lean, quick predator. But as the lizards grow they become the biggest and heaviest in the world, and prey on pigs and deer and are known also to eat people if they get the chance.

Komodo Dragon

They are named after the island of Komodo in Indonesia, though they can swim to other islands in the area.

There has been recent talk that they are also venomous. It was thought that the bacteria in their mouths were what slowed down prey after they had bitten them but new research suggests that there is actually a compound in their saliva which acts as a soporific. While their bite isn’t deadly, they can catch you up while you sleep it off.

09
Oct
13

Turtles Plus

‘Twas a public holiday on Monday and I hightailed it to Sydney Park. I haven’t been there much lately and I wanted to see how things were going, there. It was the middle of the day, so not the best light for photography, but anyhow I took my camera. And I’m glad that I did.

I hadn’t been down the little gully for some time, either; and because I’ve had wonderful bird and reptile experiences there in the past, I hoped to again. But any noticeable animal life seemed absent.

There was, however, a plant with enormous leaves which had grown very large in the time I’d not visited. It looked like some alien spawn amidst the conifers.

Big Leaves 1

Big Leaves 2

That is my hand there for comparison.

After walking around the plant for a while, I headed down to the wetlands.

Which weren’t looking all that wet, actually. It hasn’t rained much for a while and the catchments above the two ponds are being upgraded, so they are empty. The ponds have much less water than they’ve had for a while.

This has attracted unusual visitors, though. For one, a Black-winged Stilt which loves to poke around in sand and mud to look for food.

Black Winged Stilt

A Black-fronted Dotterel which feeds similarly. I have seen these before when the water was low; they are such timid creatures I could never get close enough to photograph them. Even this one was a mere dot, really, but my current camera has a longer zoom. In fact, all these birds would’ve escaped my camera without it.

Black-fronted Dotterall

And these two, which I believe to be Latham’s Snipes. It took a little bit of searching on Google images to find these. It was also hard to make them out as they blended in so well with their background.

Latham's Snipes 1

Latham's Snipes 2

But by far the best thing was the discovery that Eastern Long-necked Turtles lived in these ponds. They feed off of the small fish that also live there. I had never seen them before, but with the drop in water levels they were more exposed.

Eastern Long-necked Turtles

Eastern Long-necked Turtle 2

Eastern Long-necked Turtle 1

Two of them wanted to cross the small hill between the ponds to better water.

Eastern Long-necked Turtle 4

The first one I just guarded from dogs as it went its way. The second one (above) was more timid and I carried it across before letting it go. They headed for the viewing platform, particularly to the delight of a small girl and her baby brother.

Something of this may be seen on a video that I put together of the day.

I knew that the ponds would be drier than they have been, and I expected to see little of anything. So the day turned out rather well for me. The turtles especially were a joy, though after carrying one across…you know they’re rather smelly.

08
Oct
12

Return of the dragons



Return of the dragons, originally uploaded by smallfox2.

Lovely little skinks enjoying the return of warm weather.
This little creature let me get quite close before scurrying off. I approached it slowly and was blessed with a close up 😀

26
Sep
12

New Critters in the Menagerie

I’ve also added a couple of new photos to the animals collection on the website.

kookaburras Australian birds

Here’s looking at you.

The Kookaburra is the largest species of Kingfisher, and aside from fish it eats snakes, lizards, baby birds, and shared lunches. They’re fascinating birds.

turtles, reptiles, animals,

Riches.

This turtle was at Taronga Zoo in Sydney. Many people have cast their wishes into this pond. My wish is that we see the natural world as the greatest richness, rather than money.

Click on the photos to see them larger.

24
May
12

Jaws

I’ve added Jaws to the portfolio on Smallfox Photography.

This picture was originally of two crocodile skulls on sale in a shop in Newtown. I don’t know how I feel about that. On the one hand, they are magnificent, as crocodiles are. I just hope they died naturally.

31
Dec
10

Reptilian

I went for a little walk around Syndey Park the other day and it is the first time in all the times I’ve been there that I’ve seen any reptiles. These two delightful lizards were there.

The one on the left is a Bluetongue Lizard – you can’t see its tongue here but it is blue. I saw this one first sunning itself on the rocks that lead down from a kind of water overflow creek that at this end was dry. It put up with me a short while before hiding under the rocks.

This led me to think that following the dry creek instead of the footpath may lead to more opportunities, so I did. And it did. Further in amongst the bushes I saw the second lizard, a small dragon of which species I do not know, (anyone know?). I am famililar with them but have never known what they are called. This one, too, put up with me for a while, but when I was still there decided that under the rocks was the best place.

Actually, it isn’t the first time I’ve seen a reptile there, but they are the first wild ones. I once encountered Aphrodite there, a small python, being taken for a stroll by her owner. She was very curious.

Aphrodite




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