The Komodo Dragon is the largest and heaviest lizard. Although it is so big it can run a surprising 11 miles per hour. It lives in Indonesia and its scientific name is Varanus komodoensis. It’s main prey is goats and sometimes cattle. When resting the Komodo Dragon lies flat on its stomach.
When laying eggs, the Frilled Lizard female makes a hole and lays the eggs in the hole, and covers them up. It takes about 3 months for the eggs to hatch. They have frills as soon as they hatch. If threatened, it opens it’s mouth and hisses. If that fails it starts to run to the closest tree. It has good camouflage to the tree trunks. They are usually black or brown.
The Panther Chameleon is one of the most colorful chameleons. It lives in many different habitats in Northern Madagascar. It can be found in bushes, hedges, plantations, and backyard trees. When mating, The eggs do not come out right away. It takes about 5 weeks to lay the eggs in a nest in wet soil. After a year or so, the eggs hatch. But they can mature in less than a year. In this case the male is larger than the female. Panther Chameleons can be good pets. It can appear bigger than it really is.
The Burmese Python is one of the few animals that hunt caimans. This python and the green anaconda are the only snakes that hunt these crocodilians. The Burmese Python is an alien species to the Florida Everglades. That is where they can feast. They also prey on swans and other birds. This snake has no predators so it has no one to stop it. Humans try to hunt them but their popularity has grown.
Northern Gray Tree Frog and the Southern Gray Tree Frog
The Northern Gray Tree Frog is a little warty, but not warty enough to be a toad. It’s warts camouflage it to moss and trees. It’s scientific name is Hyla versicolor. Many of these tree frogs have patterns. This frog has a twin! The southern gray tree frog is almost identical. Since these frogs are almost identical, they are known as cryptic species. The scientific name of the Southern Gray Tree Frog is Hyla chrysoscelis.
Northern Gray Tree Frog
Southern Gray Tree Frog
The Tomato Frog can be red or bright orange. Males are smaller and less brightly colored. If wanting to breed, Tomato Frog males call loudly to attract females. Like all other frogs, this frog can only mate with it’s own kind. When in the process of laying eggs they usually do it in some kind of drain or ditch. If threatened, it can puff up it’s body to make it look bigger than it really is.
Off the topic for a second…
Thank You Vin Parise for visiting or school and talking at our newspaper meeting. I liked hearing about what goes into broadcasting sports for Iona, about the microphones, and how many people you work with every day. Your words were encouraging and I hope to work in media one day.