Articles on Reptiles

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Boa constrictors are frequently found at large in Australia, despite being banned. Marcos André/flickr

Alien invaders: the illegal reptile trade is a serious threat to Australia

Keeping non-native reptiles as pets is against the law – with good reason. Alien species traded on the black market can potentially establish themselves in the wild if they are released or escape.
An anaconda peers above and below the water. Did snakes evolve on land or underwater? Michael Lee (Flinders University & South Australian Museum)

Did snakes evolve from ancient sea serpents?

One of the enduring controversies in evolution is why snakes evolved their long, limbless bodies. A new study suggests snakes may have lost their legs at sea, before crawling ashore.
No, it’s nothing to do with a reptilian existential crisis – just a name game. melanie cook/Flickr

There’s no such thing as reptiles any more – and here’s why

You have likely been to a zoo at some point and visited their reptile house. A building where the climate control dial is stuck on the “wet sauna” setting, and filled with maniacal children competing to…
Gump, who died in May, was the last known member of her species. Director of National Parks/Supplied

Vale ‘Gump’, the last known Christmas Island Forest Skink

Among the most haunting and evocative images of Australian wildlife are the black and white photographs of the last Thylacine, languishing alone in Hobart Zoo. It’s an extraordinary reminder of how close…

Crocs are smarter than you think

Crocodiles use strategic moves to lure their prey according to new research by The University of Tennessee, Knoxville. The…
There is only one Christmas Island Forest Skink left on Earth. Hal Cogger

Australian endangered species: Christmas Island Forest Skink

Gump has lived a cossetted life, nurtured in a cage on Christmas Island. Until last year, she had two acquaintances, but misadventure claimed them both. Now there is only Gump. She’s the last known individual…
Fun fact: geckos don’t have eyelids, so they have to lick clean their eyes. UQ Media & Conrad Hoskin

Australian endangered species: Gulbaru Gecko

You may not have heard of the Gulbaru Gecko but you’d love it if you met it. Ancient and spectacular, this endangered gecko has one of the smallest distributions of any Australian animal. Australia is…
The Retro Slider - the best-named reptile in Australia? Eric Vanderduys

Australian endangered species: Retro Slider

When asked to name an Australian lizard, most Australians would probably pick the familiar blue-tongue, stumpy lizard or bearded dragon, or perhaps the iconic thorny devil, frill-neck lizard or a goanna…

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