Death-shamming in the Rinkhals

Death-shamming, death-feigning, playing dead, and thanatosis are all words that describe the process whereby animals pretend to be dead in the hope of being left alone by a perceived threat. When encountered, the Rinkhals (Hemachatus haemechatus) will often take every opportunity to escape. When cornered they will lift nearly half of their body off the …

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Painted Reed Frogs of Southern Africa

The painted reed frog is the most widespread species of reed frog in Southern Africa, with a distribution that stretches from mid Western Cape, along the coast, to the top of Mozambique. Painted reed frogs are generally quite small with a maximum body size of approximately 33mm. Although restricted to the reeds and similar vegetation, …

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Frogs of Grahamstown

Grahamstown, and its surrounds, plays host to high level of animal diversity. The complexity of the habitat coupled with favourable climatic and environmental conditions has resulted in ideal conditions for many species of frog. In and round Grahamstown, there are just over 15 species of frog. This list contains all the frog species that I have …

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Top Ten Most Common Snakes Around Grahamstown.

This list is in no particular order and is based on what I have seen inside or very close to Grahamstown. Boomslang (Dispholidus typus typus) Size: 1.2-1.5m. Habits: Diurnal snakes which are found in a large variety of habitats, most commonly in trees and shrubs, but may descend to the floor to bask or find food. Diet: Chameleons, …

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Reptiles and Amphibians of Eagle Canyon Golf Estate

I have lived in Eagle Canyon Since its inception all the one back in 2005. A lot has changed since then and while many species have been forced out by the continuous development, due to habitat loss, many species have remained and can still be found to this day. Although the large expanses of open …

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The Monitor Lizards of Southern Africa

Nile Monitor (Varanus niloticus) Family: Varanidae. Length: 120-220cm. Description: The lizard is black and yellow with an elongated head and a flat tail to aid in swimming. Juveniles are usually more vividly coloured than adults. Distribution: The species is present in the eastern part of Southern Africa but it is also present along the Orange river …

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