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Herp Articles

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Dedicated to the conservation of the herpetofauna.


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Contact Us


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The Mission of Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation:

"To conserve amphibians, reptiles and their habitats as integral parts of our ecosystem and culture through proactive and coordinated public-private partnerships.”

Herp Articles


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Water-Snake-Paul-Blo.jpg

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Herp Articles

HOW MANY SEEPAGE SALAMANDERS HAVE YOU SEEN THIS YEAR?

 

by Whit Gibbons

Steve Bennett and I did not intentionally pick the coldest day so far this fall to go search for salamanders in soggy seeps, but that was the day we went. Steve is the state herpetologist with the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources. As amphibians, salamanders are a group of creatures herpetologists study. A seep is a wetland habitat created by groundwater slowly flowing out at the base of a steep bluff.

 

WHY DO TURTLES ROAM AROUND IN THE WOODS?


by Whit Gibbons

I anticipated that the highpoint of a recent walk with two of my grandchildren, Allison and Parker, would be when the dog, Gilbey, saw a squirrel. The children take turns holding the dog’s leash, and when a rottweiler, even an old one, decides that yet another squirrel is taunting him, it can be fun to watch. The squirrel always wins. I prefer other highpoints. And sure enough we were rewarded by something different. Walking the dog through the neighborhood woods we found a snapping turtle.

 

SHOULD WE KILL ALL THE GREAT WHITE SHARKS AND ALLIGATORS?

 

by Whit Gibbons

Should we capture and eliminate wild animals that harm humans? Should we immediately put to death the individual animal that made the attack? Should we make plans to remove the entire species from the region, or even the planet?

 

THE MOST DANGEROUS ANIMAL IS A FROG

 

by Whit Gibbons

The poison dart frog of South America, scientific name Phyllobates terribilis, is arguably the most dangerous animal in the world. To a laboratory mouse the frog's skin secretions are more than 400 times as toxic as the venom of a king cobra. Another dangerous animal, the funnel-web spider from Sydney, Australia, has venom more toxic than that of an eastern diamondback rattlesnake. Drop for drop, the funnel-web is about five times as venomous as a black widow spider.

 

GLOBAL WARMING HAS MANY FACES

 

by Whit Gibbons

I gave a talk about global warming or, if you prefer, climate change to a group of very well educated high school students, not all of whom were in agreement about some aspects of the topic. I said that I realized some people did not fully believe that the earth's climate was changing and that temperatures were rising. But the data and its interpretations from myriad scientific sources have convinced me that global temperatures have risen measurably during the last century. My position was that they should probably accept that as fact.

 

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LOOKING FOR SOMETHING?


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Who is PARC?


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Our membership comes from all walks of life and includes individuals from state and federal agencies, conservation organizations, museums, pet trade industry, nature centers, zoos, energy industry, universities, herpetological organizations, research laboratories, forest industries, and environmental consultants.