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True toad and Narrow-mouthed frogs
- Bufonidae and Microhylidae

some species (for example, the Phrynomantis and more toads) can produce a poisonous skin discharge and should never be handled with bare hands.
common asian toad
common asian toad (Duttaphrynus melanostictus)


Several representatives of the Toads (Bufonidae) and narrow-mouthed frogs (Microhylidae) are regularly offered in pet stores. The toads Frequently encountered are the following the common asian toad (Duttaphrynus (Bufo) melanostictus) and the North American green toad (Anaxyrus (Bufo) debilis), as well as the false tomato frog (Dyscophus guineti), the Banded bullfrog (Kaloula pulchra) and banded rubber frog (Phrynomantis bifasciatus). Buying wild-caught specimens in favor of captive-bred should always be avoided.

Sex differences

Differentiation of the sexes is only possible in sexually mature animals. The males are usually smaller and in many species they develop calluses on the toes of the front legs.. Males ready to mate call, sometimes very strongly and persistently.


The True toad and Narrow-mouthed frogs do not show pronounced social behavior. Most of them are peaceful with each other and can be kept individually, in pairs or groups. But, animals must not differ significantly in size.

The True toad and Narrow-mouthed frogs are mostly crepuscular or nocturnal.


false tomato frog
Rana tomate de Madagascar – TimVickers, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Most species like to burrow and need a substrate of corresponding height. One terrarium for a single specimen of the smallest species (for example, the green dwarf toad) should have a floor space of at least 30 x 40 cm., for various animals of 60 x 40 cm.. In the case of the larger species (as the common asian toad, very active), the terrarium should not measure less than 80 x 50 cm. (length x WIDTH) for a single animal or 100 x 50 cm for several specimens. For species that grow a lot (for example, the Cane toadRhinella marina), are needed terrariums much bigger. Height terrarium (at least 30 cm.) not especially important for animals that live on the ground.

Fluorescent tubes with a daily lighting time of 10 to 12 hours are suitable for lighting. The optimum is a slight temperature gradient in the terrarium of about 23 – 28 °C with a humidity of 70 % approximately. This can be achieved by spraying the terrarium daily.. At night, the temperature should drop a bit for many species (normally not below 20 °C) and, at the same time, humidity should rise to 90 – 95 %. For the basic temperature, weak heating mats can be used, installed outside the terrarium. They can be used to heat the floor (at most one third of the soil surface!) or the walls. With the help of a thermocontroller, the heating mat can be specifically controlled to prevent overheating. Precise thermometers and hygrometers are needed to measure temperature and humidity.

The height of the excavatable substrate (for example, a terrarium soil mix, bark mulch, moss) must allow animals to fully excavate. The substrate should be slightly damp after daily spraying and should never dry out completely.. We must also avoid waterlogging.

Additional withdrawals (for example, coconut shells), a shallow water basin and natural planting complete the assembly.


Animals prefer to feed on live insects (crickets, crickets, grasshopper, cockroaches, etc.), worms and slugs. Regular administration of a mineral supplement ensures healthy bone growth. Mealworms, zophobas and wax moths should be fed only rarely due to their high protein and fat content.

Caution: many True toad and Narrow-mouthed frogs tend to gain weight. In the case of adult animals, it is enough to feed them every two or three days.


Food scraps and feces should be removed daily. Animals usually defecate in their own hiding place, so the substrate must be changed regularly. The water bowls should also be cleaned daily and filled with fresh water.

Animal health must be monitored daily. The most common health problems in frogs are softening of the bones, emaciation or fatty degeneration and, above all, changes in the skin (for example, red discoloration of the skin). If there is any abnormality, consult a veterinarian who is familiar with amphibians.

Acclimatization and handling

Amphibians are animals of pure observation and should NOT be petted. In the first days in his new home, animals need some rest to get used to their new environment.

Due to the sensitivity of your skin, amphibians should only be touched in exceptional cases. Only the largest animals can be caught directly by hand. The use of disposable gloves is recommended (moistened). The smallest animals, on the other hand, should always be captured with the help of plastic containers or similar.

Special features

some species (for example, the Phrynomantis and more toads) can produce a poisonous skin discharge and should never be handled with bare hands. Protective gloves should be used for the care and handling of animals..

Attention: all native amphibian species are protected species and should not be taken from the wild. At the 17th CITES Conference of the Parties, held in the fall of 2016, the false tomato frog (Dyscophus guineti) came under the protection of the species (Appendix II). This regulation will soon be transferred to European legislation (obligation to inform, proof of origin required).

▷ The world of Pets: Dogs, cats, birds, reptiles, amphibians

Sudan plated lizard
- Gerrhosaurus major

How they are easily domesticated and relatively easy to maintain, the Sudan plated lizard is a very popular terrarium animal.
Sudan plated lizard
Gerrhosaurus major, at Budapest Zoo – Wikimedia



The Sudan plated lizard is large and powerful, being able to reach a total length of up to 48-56 cm., but they usually grow up to 30-40 cm..

Rounded muzzle and large eyes give them a kind look. A longitudinal fold runs from the mandible to the hind legs on each flank.. The scales of the head are very rough. Dorsal scales, strongly faired, are distributed in 14-19 longitudinal rows and 31-33 Transverse, and the ventral in 10 longitudinal rows.

The soles of the feet are covered with weakly keeled scales. The back is light brown, the individual scales in the center are usually darker, on both sides there may be a clear longitudinal stripe between the back and flanks, as well as between the flanks and the belly. The chin and throat are cream to yellow in color, the belly ash gray to light brown

Life expectancy is 15 to 20 years.

Distribution and habitat

The range of this type of lizard is not limited to Sudan, as the name reflects. They inhabit dry savannas and rocky areas from Ghana in an easterly direction, passing through Nigeria and Sudan, to the east coast of Africa, and from Eritrea, passing through Somalia and Tanzania, southbound, to Zimbabwe and Botswana.

Although they are diurnal, hide in burrows or cracks when it's hot. Prefer holes in the ground, cracks in rocks and caves, to those who return immediately when they flee.

They like a dry and hot climate, around 30°C.


The Sudan plated lizard buries its two to four soft-shelled eggs in warm, moist soil. The young hatch after about 4 months.


This Sudan plated lizard feeds on insects, spiders and small vertebrates. Mollusks, like the giant African snail and the great millipedes, They are also part of the varied menu. Plant food is not the main component of your diet, but they like to eat juicy fruit, as has been observed quite frequently in nature.

The Sudan plated lizard in captivity

How they are easily domesticated and relatively easy to maintain, the Sudan plated lizard is a very popular terrarium animal.


Sudan plated lizard
Sudan plated lizard at Beijing Zoo – Shizhao, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Sudan plated lizard acclimatizes quickly in a large terrarium. To keep a pair or a trio, a terrarium of at least 150 x 60 x 60 cm.. It should be equipped with heat lamps and ultraviolet rays and furnished with roots, climbing branches and stone structures that animals prefer to use as resting places and hiding places, as well as a shallow bowl of water.

To increase the area of action, the rear and side walls can be covered with rock structures. Sand or a mixture of sand and clay is suitable as a substrate that must always be kept slightly moist.. The air temperature should be between 28-32°C during the day, locally up to 45°C, and reduce to 18-22°C at night.

For sale “Sudan plated lizard”

The price of a Sudan plated lizard in the exotic animal market ranges from 125 and 150 EUR.

Alternative names:

1. Western plated lizard, Great plated lizard, or Broadley’s rough-scaled plated lizard (English).
2. Broadleysaurus major (French).
3. Braune Schildechse, Riesenschildechse (German).
4. Lagarto ocidental, Lagarto grande ou Lagarto de Broadley (Portuguese).
5. Lagarto “acorazado” de Sudán (español).

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Geckos – A fascinating lizard
- Gekkonidae

Gekko gecko
Gekko gecko – Robert Michniewicz, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Geckos – a brief profile

The Geckos are, without a doubt, fascinating animals. Although they are becoming more popular as pets, the Geckos they continue to enjoy a kind of exotic status. The following brief profile aims to introduce a little to these interesting reptiles.


The Geckos have an impressive adaptability. That is why there is no region of the world in which they are exclusively located.. The Geckos can be found both in temperate climate regions such as in the desert or in the tropics.

Social behaviour

In the wild, most species of Geckos live in loose associations. But, some species are also strictly solitary, and males and females only come together to mate. In pet ownership, the Geckos they are usually kept in groups of two or more per terrarium.

But, if you keep several Geckos in different terrariums, you will be able to observe very well the communication between the animals. If there are others Geckos in the same territory, greeting each other, will threaten or make courtship sounds.

Geckos for maintenance in captivity

- Lygodactylus williamsi
Electric blue gecko

Electric blue gecko

Trade in the electric blue Gecko is now banned in the EU. They cannot be maintained or sold in the ...
- Correlophus ciliatus
Crested gecko

Crested gecko

Source Content The Crested Gecko (Correlophus ciliatus) is located at the southern end of Grande Terre, the main island of ...
- Cyrtopodion scabrum
Rough-tailed gecko

Rough-tailed gecko

The Rough-tailed Gecko needs a dry, sandy terrarium with shelter and a small log to climb on or climb into. ...
- Underwoodisaurus milii
Thick-tailed gecko

Thick-tailed gecko

Thick-tailed Gecko have the nickname of "Barking Gecko" because they can make the corresponding sounds. If they sit ...
- Phelsuma madagascariensis
Madagascar day gecko

Madagascar day gecko

Thanks to the special adhesive foils on your fingers, the daytime Gecko of Madagascar does not only move through the ...
- Phelsuma laticauda
Gold dust day gecko

Gold dust day gecko

The Golden Day Gecko is commonly known as the GEICO Insurance mascot, and also the main character of the ...
- Gekko badenii
Golden gecko

Golden gecko

The golden yellow Gecko is a splendid terrarium host, as they are very easy to maintain ...
- Lygodactylus luteopicturatus
Dwarf yellow-headed gecko

Dwarf yellow-headed gecko

The Dwarf yellow-headed gecko is widely traded in the exotic animal trade. Content Origin and habitat The ...
- Lygodactylus conraui
Cameroon dwarf gecko

Cameroon dwarf gecko

Extraordinary arboreal dwarf lizard that will soon replace the rarely seen Gecko in terrariums. ...
- Aeluroscalabotes felinus
Gecko cat arboricola

Cat gecko

The Tree Cat Gecko is a graceful gecko highly sought after by gecko collectors.. It's relatively easy to create, ...
- Eublepharis macularius
Leopard gecko

Leopard gecko

Leopard Geckos are peaceful and friendly creatures.. They can be kept individually, as a couple or in a group without any problem. Content ...
- Teratoscincus scincus
Common wonder gecko

Common wonder gecko

The Common Wonder Gecko inhabits the ground in deserts and semi-deserts with sparse vegetation.. High daytime and low temperatures ...
- Gekko vittatus
Lined gecko

Lined gecko

Large and beautifully designed tree gecko. This type of gecko also has the advantage of being totally ...
- Christinus marmoratus
Marbled gecko

Marbled gecko

Very nice Asian gecko, with a splendid contrast of colors in its range of grays, black and white. It is a ...
- Hemidactylus turcicus
Mediterranean house gecko

Mediterranean house gecko

The Pink Salamander is active at sunset and at night. It only activates sporadically during the day, especially when ...


As there are different species of Gecko, the physique of animals is sometimes very different. In total, the respective species reach a length of about 4 to 60 cm.. But, the species of Geckos smaller ones are especially suitable for keeping as pets, as they require less space.

A special feature of the Geckos are its legs, since many species have adhesive sheets with which they can cling to very smooth objects or walk and climb them. Other species, However, have intermediate skins on their fingers and can walk on sand.

Life expectancy

As a rule, the Geckos they live between 8 and 15 years, but there are exceptions. The Leopard gecko, for example, can live 25 years. In principle, you can already tell by the size of the species of Gecko whether the animal can reach a longer life. The smaller a Gecko, the lower your life expectancy will be.

If the Geckos are kept as pets, their life expectancy depends mainly on the conditions in which they are maintained. Keep the Geckos in conditions that are not appropriate for the species usually causes premature death.

Sexual maturity

Sexual maturity in Geckos usually begins at 12-18 months, although there may be differences from one species to another. If the Geckos find abundance of food, females may reach sexual maturity before their physical development is complete. This fact can have fatal consequences for the Gecko.

Gestation period

As for the gestation period, also varies from species to species. In general, However, it can be said that the Geckos have a gestation period of about 45 to 60 days. Depending on the ambient temperature, can pass up to 80 days until hatching. But, in ideal conditions, it only takes a few 50 days.


To maintain the health of the Geckos, depend on a varied and nutritious diet. Between the Geckos there are carnivores, herbivores, omnivores and scavengers. So, the diet can include both insects and snails, green foods and even smaller mammals.

Minimum space required

Before deciding on the terrarium size, you should know what kind of Gecko is and how many animals you want to have together. Basically, the necessary space depends on the body size of adult animals.

So, the species of Geckos smaller require less space than larger ones. If two are maintained Geckos in a terrarium, it is assumed that a minimum space of about 100 cm x 75 cm x 50 cm.. With each additional animal, the need for space increases a 50% more.

Frequently Asked Questions about Geckos

There are questions about the Geckos that are often done. We would like to answer some of them here.

Because the Geckos they can stick to smooth surfaces and thus climb walls?

The secret of the climbing ability of many species of Geckos resides on its special legs. The Geckos have millions of fine hairs on the soles of their feet. These hairs are so fine that even a human hair is hundreds of times thicker.. With the help of these hairs, unique in nature, the Gecko find a foothold even on the smoothest surfaces. This is because a weak electrostatic force acts at the molecular level between each of the tiny hairs and the surface.. For a single hair, this attraction is almost insignificant, but the large number of combined hairs ensures that the Geckos can adhere to almost anywhere.

How do geckos communicate?? do they make sounds?

In fact, most species of Geckos they also communicate with each other using their own vocal language. So that, there are typical calls that can be used to clearly identify certain species of geckos (for example, the Tokay gecko (Gekko gecko)). The frequency and volume of the calls differ according to the species. And even within the same species there are individual differences from one animal to another..

Questions before buying a Gecko

Before buying Geckos, there are some basic questions you should ask yourself. It's important to know what you're getting into, because once you have them at home, you have to be prepared to take care of them for several years. During this time, not only will the costs of keeping the animals occur. Of course, the owner also has to invest a lot of work and time in maintaining the Geckos in a way appropriate to the species.

If you are not familiar with the Geckos as pets, first you should thoroughly inform yourself about the requirements for keeping these reptiles before buying them. Once the purchase decision has been made, the question of where you can buy geckos.

But before you do it, you should check if the Geckos are the right pet for you. And if it is suitable for keeping geckos at all. To avoid impulse purchases, you should take a little time and answer the following questions honestly:

  • I know what breeding is like Geckos appropriate to the species?
  • Work only starts with purchase. Am I willing to sacrifice time, money and space for animals?
  • The costs of breeding Geckos are easily underestimated due to their small size. can i afford to buy a Gecko?
  • The Geckos they can also get sick. Am I willing to pay for any veterinary treatment and medication and can I?
  • One terrarium needs space and special weather conditions. Do I have a suitable room to accommodate the animals?
  • The Geckos they are not stuffed animals. the characteristics of the Geckos fit my ideas about a pet?
  • The Geckos eat live animals. Am I prepared to buy and feed them myself?, and even to raise them?

What are the purchase and maintenance costs that I have to reckon with??

As already mentioned, many people underestimate the costs of maintaining Geckos of appropriate shape to the species due to its small size. But, the costs of keeping pets do not necessarily depend on their size, but of the demands they pose for their maintenance.

Basically, it can be said that pets more “exotic”, including reptiles such as Geckos, tend to be more expensive to maintain. This is due to the fact that these exotic animals live in nature in completely different climatic conditions than those that prevail here.. The “simulation” of the natural habitat is correspondingly more complex and, Therefore, also more expensive.

Basically, you can distinguish between one-off costs (or rare) and regular to maintain the Geckos.

One-off costs

  • Acquisition costs of animals
  • Terrarium
  • Furnish
  • Illumination
  • Heating systems or thermal carpets
  • Humidifiers or irrigation systems
  • Thermometer
  • Hygrometer

Ordinary costs

  • Food
  • Minerals
  • Detergent
  • Soils
  • Illuminators
  • Electricity for heating and lighting

One-time or infrequent costs amount to approximately several hundred euros, because terrariums and the necessary technology are usually not exactly cheap. It also, there are the costs of buying the animals, in which you have to have some 30 to 100 euros per Gecko.

The usual costs of raising Geckos are somewhat minor, although they should not be underestimated. Food and electricity also cost money. And finally, but not less important, do not forget the veterinary expenses. Regular costs should be at least 20 to 50 euros per animal per month.

Are geckos suitable for children?

And again, parents make the mistake of buying their children a Gecko as a pet. They think that a Gecko it's something completely different and that your child will have a pet “special”. But not even the Gecko nor will the child enjoy this decision, because geckos are definitely not pets for children.

Like the Geckos require a lot of attention, knowledge and care, children would quickly be overwhelmed by them. It also, you must be able to ensure that you are aware of the requirements of the Gecko. And the Geckos they are not stuffed animals, although this claim is often used as a sales strategy in the pet trade.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with buying a Gecko and let the children have a part of the new cohabitant. But, children should not be left to take care of the Gecko solos.

Buy a gecko

The Geckos can be purchased in pet stores, to breeders or at reptile fairs. But, the best and safest option is to buy directly from the breeder. The breeder can often give you advice on breeding Geckos or offer help with any questions or problems. You can also ask the breeder to show you where the Geckos and thus decide for yourself whether the breeder is trustworthy and experienced in breeding Geckos.

At the time of buying Geckos, you must first observe the behavior of animals. Only if the Gecko seems to be healthy and alert you should take it home. In the breeder, you can usually take your time to look and then decide which gecko you like best.. You can also make an appointment with the breeder beforehand and see how the animal is fed..

Unfortunately, there are always black sheep among breeders who only take into account the economic aspect and do not care about animals. It is better to avoid this type of breeders, because each purchase guarantees the continuity of the system.

At the time of buying, pay special attention to whether the terrariums are clean, if the Geckos behave fearfully, if they have enough space and fresh water, and what is the feeding of the Geckos. As you already know what a gecko needs, now it's easy to find out if geckos go well where you want to buy them.

Once you have decided on a Gecko, notice the following:

  • light eyes
  • No wounds or scars
  • No deformities in the toes
  • Age and size
  • Properly fed

Acclimatization period after purchase

After taking the Gecko at home, you need time to get used to your new environment. It is important that you place the animal in the terrarium ready for use immediately after transport and then only observe or talk to you.. In no case should it be removed Gecko to play the first day. New animals must first settle in their unfamiliar environment and this is already stressful enough for the Geckos. If you start too early with pressure or even coercion, there is a risk that animals will react with fear and shyness.

So that the Gecko feel comfortable, the terrarium must be arranged appropriately to the species. If he Gecko has enough hiding places, will be installed faster. after a few days, you should try to attract the Gecko with food and, when sufficiently domesticated, you can try to get it out. If you're lucky, the Gecko it will come to your hand later on its own, but it's also possible that he's still shy. Both must be accepted, because in the end each animal is its own individual.

Alternative names:

1. Gekkota, gekko (English).
2. Gekkonidae (French).
3. Gekkonidae (German).
4. lagartixas, taruíras, osgas, gecos, catongas, bribas, bibas, sardaniscas ou sardanitas (Portuguese).
5. Gecko, Gekko, Geco, Geko, Salamanquina, Salamanquesa (español).

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Red-footed tortoise
- Chelonoidis carbonaria

The Red-footed tortoise impresses with bright yellowish or red markings on the shell. Unlike the other turtles, needs a lot of humidity and a place to bathe.
Red-footed tortoise
Red-footed tortoise in Loro Parque, Tenerife – Bjoertvedt, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons (Spain)



The home of the Red-footed tortoise (Chelonoidis carbonaria) is tropical South America, where its distribution is divided into a northern and a southern zone. In the north it is located between Panama and northern Brazil, in the south from southern Brazil through Peru, Bolivia and Paraguay to Argentina. It is represented from tropical to subtropical in the south to the degree 25 latitude. There is a regular alternation between hot summers and dry winters..

Characteristics / Appearance

With a dorsal shell of 50 centimeters, the Red-footed tortoise is a medium-sized specimen. As an adult in captivity, usually weighs more than 20 kg. It is especially striking for its black background color, that marks the head, the neck and shell of the animal. The legs of the turtle have spots between red and orange, similar to those of the neck and head. The color is extremely atypical for turtles and is the reason why the animal is also called “red-footed turtle”.

With its high shell, the Red-footed tortoise it is also very well protected against falls on its back and can quickly help itself to its feet in the event of such a fall. The black shields of the dorsal shell are always yellow in the center. As it usually lives in humid areas, the turtle needs long legs to be able to walk easily through swampy areas.


The Red-footed tortoise is native to the rainforest, but also of the savannahs. In this wide range, turtles differ quite a bit in size and coloration. In Argentina live populations with specimens that only reach a few 20 cm of shell length. On the other hand, the largest individuals are known in Brazil.


Very little is known about the way of life in nature. The Red-footed tortoise lives in dry lowlands, grasslands and adjacent forest regions. Sometimes, these tortoises are also found in open areas of humid forests. The diet is largely made up of plant foods, but also carrion.


The breeding season begins with the start of the rainy season. The female lays from 6 to 10 eggs in a nest dug by herself that only has a few 10 depth cm. The incubation period depends on the ambient temperature and humidity and ranges from 100 and 150 days.

The courtship is ritualized: Males surround females willing to reproduce, biting them repeatedly on the legs. The cloacal region of the female is intensely touched. Finally, the male positions himself frontally in front of the female and rocks his head back and forth before mating.

Threats to the species

State of conservation ⓘ

Vulnerable Vulnerable ⓘ (UICN)ⓘ

The Red-footed tortoise is considered to be vulnerable and is included in the Appendix II of the CITES, which restricts international trade, although this does not offer protection within a country and smuggling continues to occur in large quantities. Conservation parks and refuges, captive breeding farms in natural conditions and the rise of captive breeding in other countries have helped, but they are still exported in large quantities (35.565 between 2000 and 2005), especially as pets and food. Registered exports do not include smuggling or other losses, which some estimate at more than double that figure. They are considered especially threatened in Argentina and Colombia, and are considered more threatened than the Yellow-footed tortoise (Chelonoidis denticulata) and Chaco tortoise (Chelonoidis chilensis).

They are widely used as food throughout their range, especially where other meats are limited. Their ability to go a long time without eating makes it easy to catch and keeps them fresh for long periods. The Catholic Church allows eating turtles on fast days when most meats are prohibited., like Lent. Turtle cake (served on a turtle shell) It is one of the favorite foods for those days, and large quantities of turtles are exported for that purpose only. Even people who live in countries with abundant livestock available enjoy wild game, like turtles, where possible. Hunting for food is so widespread that Colombia and some other countries import turtles from their neighbors..

The habitat destruction is another major threat to the Red-footed tortoise, and for so many other species. They are also widely collected as local pets and their shells are sold as souvenirs..

The "Red-footed tortoise" in captivity


The Red-footed tortoise it can only be maintained adequately to the species in private tenure with a lot of effort. The animal needs a high tropical humidity and at the same time a very high temperature. An ambient temperature of 28 to 32 °C. The temperatures of 40 °C should prevail under various technically constructed basking zones (consisting of HQI lamps). The Red-footed tortoise you need these conditions. It also, the animal must constantly have fresh water for bathing and drinking. Since these turtles like to bathe and often get into the water, small bowls and bowls are not enough. You have to offer real bathroom facilities. Preferably with a drain to maintain hygiene.

Young and semi-sweet animals must have 20 to 30 square meters of outdoor enclosure with an annexed barn or greenhouse. The Red-footed tortoise adult must have at least 50 square meters of outdoor space. For a breeding appropriate to the species, it is recommended to plan from 100 square meters. Animals are extremely active and move around a lot every day. They also differ in the way they face the sun. While our European turtles and many other tropical turtles like direct sun, the Red-footed tortoise needs much shaded areas to protect from direct sun.


In the wild, breeding begins with the rainy season (in Europe, from May to August) and follows a clear ritual. The male of the Red-footed tortoise surrounds the female and attracts her attention by constantly biting her legs. The male's nose is always in the female's cloaca. As soon as the female no longer flees, the male climbs on top of it and turns his head to the right and left before mating begins..

Keeping turtles in captivity ensures that they can lay eggs virtually all year round. One to two clutches of eggs are produced per year. There are 4 to 10 eggs in each clutch. The female lays the eggs in a pit of up to 20 depth cm, that she herself chooses in a humid and warm place in the outdoor area. In the days before the eggs are laid, the female can often be seen doing some test excavations.

If you want to incubate the eggs and look for young, you need to carefully pick them up after laying and transfer them to an incubator. At a constant substrate temperature of 33 °C, The young will hatch after 110 to 130 days. It is important to maintain the 100% humidity in the incubator and use a very moist substrate. The temperature in the incubator is usually slightly higher than that of the substrate. High fluctuations should be avoided.

Buy one "Red-footed tortoise"

The price of a "Red-footed tortoise" at the exotic animal market, bred in captivity, ranges between 200 – 700 EUR, depending on its shell and size.

Images "Red-footed tortoise"

Red-footed Tortoise (Chelonoidis carbonarius)
Apure, The LLanos, VENEZUELA
Red-footed tortoise
Mating of red-footed turtles (Chelonoidis carbonarius). In captivity in the Barbados Wildlife Reserve. - Postdlf, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Red-footed turtle karapax - via Wikimedia Commons

Videos "Red-footed tortoise"

KÖHLERSCHILDKRÖTE Chelonoidis carbonarius

He fights against the males of Chelonoides carbonarius

Alternative names:

1. Chelonoidis carbonarius (English).
2. Tortue charbonnière (French).
3. Morrocoy Schildkröte (German).
4. Jabuti, Jabuti-do-cerrado, Jabuti-Vermelho (Portuguese).
5. Tortuga de patas rojas, Morrocoy Sabanero, Morrocoy, Karumbe (español).

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Nicaraguan slider
- Trachemys emolli

The Nicaraguan slider lives in all kinds of watercourses: lazy rivers, lakes, swamps, ponds, voice,… They adapt to almost any aquatic environment, except fast-flowing rivers.
Nicaraguan slider
Carapace of a male Nicaraguan slider – banana kiwi, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Origin / Distribution

The Trachemys emolli was first described as a subspecies of Trachemys scripta in 1990. From 2002, was treated as a separate species.

The Nicaraguan slider (Trachemys grayi emolli) It has its distribution area in Costa Rica., El Salvador, Honduras and Nicaragua.

Characteristics / Appearance

The Nicaraguan slider is similar to Red-eared slider (Trachemys scripta), but from the point of view of the animal keeper it has the advantage that it is not on the list of invasive species in the EU. Rarely kept in zoos.

The Nicaraguan slider grows quite a lot, the males 20-30 cm., the females up 38 cm and possibly more. Shell, with circular markings, it is slightly keeled and serrated on the posterior margin. The basic color of the body and soft tissues is olive green to dark brown., the markings are yellow, the yellow-orange cheek patch.


Nicaraguan slider
Representative drawing of an Emolli – banana kiwi, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The species prefers stagnant or slow-flowing waters with mostly dense underwater vegetation.. Juveniles feed mainly on small animals such as tadpoles., small fish and crustaceans, snails and insects. With increasing age, algae and aquatic plants are also increasingly taken. Females can produce several clutches of eggs per season., which lasts from December to May and can contain up to 30 eggs.

Threats to the species

The Nicaraguan slider serves as a provider of meat and eggs for the local population. Breeding farms have also been created.

International trade is not regulated by the CITES.

The "Nicaraguan slider" in captivity


The Nicaraguan slider needs an integrated land area.
They can reach a total length of 28 cm in the aquarium. Females always grow slightly larger than males.. So, they need an aquarium with a rim length of at least 150 cm.. But, more is always better.

They need hiding places and shelters. especially the roots, timber, aquarium plants and stone or rock structures are gladly accepted by the animals.

Tortoises can be kept in pairs or in groups with several conspecifics.. Socialization with other turtles is also possible.

The Nicaraguan slider adapts wonderfully to aquarium conditions. They feel very comfortable in water temperatures between 23 and 30 degrees Celsius. The pH value should be between 6,0 and 7,5. Low heat point of the integrated ground part, the temperature can even reach 40 degrees Celsius. During the winter months, between october and february, you have to lower the temperature of the water to 23 – 25 degrees Celsius.

The Nicaraguan slider feed mixed. They accept both meat and plant foods.

Buy one "Nicaraguan slider"

The price of a "Nicaraguan slider" at the exotic animal market, ranges between 60 – 100 EUR.

Videos "Nicaraguan slider"

55 Gal. Nicaraguan Slider Tank Setup

Trachemys emolli ( nicaraguan slider )

Alternative names:

1. Nicaraguan slider (English).
2. Trachémyde du Nicaragua (French).
3. Nicaragua-Schmuckschildkröte (German).
4. Tartaruga da Nicarágua (Portuguese).
5. "Tortuga nicaragüense" (español).

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Meller's chameleon
- Trioceros melleri

The Meller's chameleon It is the largest chameleon on the African continent., large males usually reach 61 cm length
Meller's chameleon
Virginia ZOO and Norfolk – Meller's chameleon (Trioceros Melleri) – Tomás Del CoroFlickr


Origin / Distribution

The Meller's chameleon (Trioceros melleri) can be found in Malawi, northern Mozambique and Tanzania.

Characteristics / Appearance

The Meller's chameleon It is the largest chameleon on the African continent., large males usually reach 61 cm length, but some exceptionally large specimens are said to have reached more than 76 cm in length and have weighed 600 g..

Females are generally smaller than males., and have less developed dorsal and medial crests. The head of this species is relatively small in relation to the rest of the body and has a more elongated shape compared to other chameleons of its genus..

Meller's chameleon
Virginia ZOO in Norfolk – Meller's Chameleon (Trioceros Melleri) – Tomás Del CoroFlickr

The Meller's chameleon it is stocky-bodied and has a relatively stubby tail one-third the length of its body. A low, scalloped crest extends from just behind the helmet of the head through the proximal half of the tail, and a sharp medial ridge runs from the eyes to the tip of its snout, bearing a single small horn. This chameleon has greatly enlarged occipital lobes. It has heterogeneous scales that vary in shape and size on various parts of its body and large, granular scales evenly distributed on the trunk and limbs.. In the gular region of the chameleon there are longitudinal rows of large, granular scales., one of its most distinctive features.

The spots and broad vertical bands on the chameleon's flanks range in color from brown, the dark green, yellow or even black. The basic coloration of this species is a deep green with white stripes, but, like many chameleons, can change its color depending on various circumstances. If they are fed or handled, may show black and white dots. when sunbathing, the side of their body facing sunlight may turn dark green or black, while the rest of the animal remains much lighter.

The Meller's chameleon has color patterns associated with stress. Mild excitement or stress is indicated by dark spots that overlay the reptile's normal color. These dark green spots turn to black specks as the chameleon becomes more disturbed.. Severe stress turns the chameleon first charcoal gray, followed by pure white trimmed with yellow stripes. One Meller's chameleon diseased may be mottled brown, grey, pink or white.


The Meller's chameleon it is a resident of the treetops of the bush savannahs, as well as from the summits of tropical forests. It can also occasionally be found near human settlements.. Here the altitudes range from 0 to 600 m.

Threats to the species

State of conservation ⓘ

Status Minor Concern ⓘ (UICN)ⓘ

The populations of Meller's chameleon are affected by the wildlife trade, and the species has been included in Appendix II of CITES to limit its effects.

The "Meller's chameleon" in captivity

These chameleons range from docile to moderately aggressive towards humans.. Often, require a great deal of taming before they accept people. Wild-caught can be more aggressive than those in captivity, since they are not used to people.

Usually, they are old enough to be self-confident and not scared of much. They are not used to many lizards being bigger than them. But, they can become aggressive when they feel threatened. They may hiss and try to appear large in an attempt to scare away predators.. They rarely do this with people, unless they are treated badly.

Despite the misconception, these chameleons do not blend in with their surroundings. On the other hand, its color change pattern is much more likely to be communication. These species of chameleons darken when they are angry and light up when trying to attract a mate.. You can often tell what your chameleon is thinking based on its color. It will probably cost you a bit, but in time you will learn to speak their language. This can help you determine if something is wrong.

The terrarium

just because of its size, they need large terrariums or should be kept in a greenhouse. In large terrariums they can be kept in pairs or in small groups of females.. Males are absolutely incompatible with each other. The terrarium should be designed with strong climbing branches and sturdy plants.

Meller's chameleon
Chameleon of Meller Chamaeleo Melleri at Bristol Zoo, Bristol, England – Arpingstone, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

As they live in nature in the treetops, the terrarium must be well lit. Neon tubes or new T-5 neon tubes are suitable, that emit an extremely bright light.

Spraying briefly in the morning and longer in the afternoon, should try to get a 50-60% humidity during the day and a 80-90% At night.

Temperatures should not exceed 30°C during the day and can drop to 18°C ​​or lower at night.

These chameleons also prefer to drink water on the move, so it is advisable to accustom the animals to a dripper or install a small waterfall. A three-month rainy season, from March to May, simulates natural conditions and can have a positive effect on reproductive behavior.


Due to its large size, these chameleons eat important prey. They can even eat small birds in the wild, so you have to take it into account when offering them the right feeding insects. Giant cockroaches are usually a good option, as they spread further than most commonly available insects. You can also use hornworms and moths, since they are also quite large.

Grasshoppers and anything else that size is a good option. They can also eat smaller items, like the worms. But, these will not serve as sustenance, so it is better to use larger prey for the most part.

Feed them a few different prey items each day. For most chameleons, a smaller number of prey is better. are likely to be overweight. You need to feed them enough to maintain a healthy weight. Monitor your body condition and adjust food intake as needed.

It is advisable to supplement the diet of chameleons. But, are sensitive to excess supplementation, so it is essential to be careful with the dose. They need calcium without phosphorus a couple of times a week at least. A vitamin D3 may also be recommended, although it should only be used once a month. The intestinal load of insects is essential to ensure that they consume many vitamins and minerals, that are essential to your overall health.

Health and handling

These chameleons are a bit sensitive when it comes to their overall health.. Often, wild-caught chameleons arrive with injuries or other problems that were not originally expected. They often have parasites and are dehydrated. They can take a long time to regain their full strength.. In many cases, these chameleons are known as “lizards 90 days”, since many of them do not recover from their transportation ordeal.

You should carefully inspect your chameleon for any injuries upon arrival. The most common problems are loss and infection of the toenails.. Bites and scratches can also occur, but these are rarer. Can be treated with a multipurpose ointment, which should be enough for most wounds. In some cases, a visit to the vet may be necessary to treat the wound.

Parasites are a major problem in this disease. Periodic fecal analysis may also be necessary.. A heavy load of parasites can be dangerous for these lizards. But, you may want to wait until the chameleon stabilizes before using a harsh parasite medication. Sometimes, these chameleons do not survive treatment. You do not want to add additional stress to the animal's system.

Stress is the main concern with these animals. They can get stressed very quickly, especially after being imported. Stress can make them exposed to diseases, which can lead to illness and death. They need adequate housing with the correct temperature and lighting. You don't have to handle them too often., as this can also cause them stress.

Buy one "Meller's chameleon"

Compared to other reptiles, these chameleons can be quite expensive. They usually cost between 150 and 500 EUR. Buying wild-caught chameleons is often not recommended. These are typically much less likely to thrive than captive-bred lizards. Usually, those caught in the wild go through a complex shipping process, they are disease carriers and have a high parasite load. For this reason, often have difficulty in captivity.

We recommend finding a local breeder if possible. These chameleons are not well behaved when shipped, so it is better to buy them locally. We recommend a breeder instead of a pet store, as this can reduce your cost. It also, you will be sure that the chameleon has been bred in captivity instead of being caught in the wild.

The breeder must allow you to see the enclosures in which the adults and babies are kept.. This will give you a good idea of ​​where the chameleon has been and the level of care it has received.

Videos "Meller's chameleon"

Trioceros melleri 2,0 Elefantenohrchamäleon

Trioceros melleri group eating crickets

Alternative names:

1. Meller's chameleon, Giant one-horned chameleon, (English).
2. Caméléon de Meller, Caméléon cornu géant (French).
3. Mellers Riesenchamäleon, Riesiges einhörniges Chamäleon, Meller’s chameleon, Elefantenohrchamäleon (German).
4. Camaleão de Meller, Camaleão gigante de um chifre (Portuguese).
5. "Camaleón de Meller", Camaleón gigante (español).

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Nelson's milksnake
- Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni

The Nelson's milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni) it is a small to medium sized snake, with a length of 91-152 centimeters.
Nelson's milksnake
Nelson's snake (Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni) – John, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Origin / Distribution

The Nelson's milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni) It is named in honor of Edward W.. Nelson, who worked for the U.S.. Biological Survey desde 1890.

It is a subspecies of mousetrap coral (Lampropeltis triangulum) found in Mexico from southern Guanajuato and central Jalisco to the Pacific coast, also found in the narrow plains of northwestern Michoacán and on the Tres Marías Islands.

Characteristics / Appearance

The Nelson's milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni) it is a small to medium sized snake, with a length of 91-152 centimeters, being the mean of 107-120 centimeters. like most snakes, The females are bigger than the males. These snakes have 13 and 18 wide red rings on the body, with thinner black bands and even thinner white ones.


The distribution area of ​​this snake seems to be linked to the proximity of watercourses, including those used for irrigation and agriculture.

The "Nelson's milksnake" in captivity

Nelson's milksnake
Detail of the head of an albino Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni (Nelson's milksnake) – CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

The terrarium

Use a loose substrate and provide the snake with two hiding places, one on each side of the terrarium, and other decorations such as plants, remained, tubes, lianas, etc. This will not only add security to the terrarium, it will also encourage escalation. The creation of a bioactive facility, the use of a low percentage ultraviolet light during the day, and/or provision of a water dish large enough for the snake to soak in can also add enrichment.

Hideouts should be one at the cold end and one at the hot end. This allows the snake to thermoregulate, control your body temperature, while allowing her to feel safe.

Temperature and humidity

An under tank heater (UTH), like a heat mat, a thermal tape or a thermal cable, it is a good heat source for king snakes. Make sure the UTH covers at least 1/3, but preferably 1/2, of floor space. Surface temperature above the UTH should be 29-32°C , and it should not go down at all at night. Ambient temperatures must be 23-28°C throughout the enclosure, and can drop to 18-21°C at night.

Humidity should be moderate: 30-50%. A wet hide box can be provided to aid in the molting process, and the general humidity can increase up to 60-70% during this time. This should be measured with a digital probe hygrometer. If the humidity is too high or too low for a long time, shedding problems or even an upper respiratory infection may occur.

Ambient temperatures should be measured with a digital probe thermometer, and surface temperatures should be measured with an infrared temperature gun. ALWAYS connect all heat sources to a thermostat or regulator to avoid burns or fires, and to be able to control the temperatures.

Don't trust glued-on analog thermometers and hygrometers, as they are notoriously inaccurate. Also avoid thermal rocks; they are known to overheat very easily and burn animals.


The Nelson's milksnake does not require UV lighting; However, a linear light 5-6% UVB is beneficial and can be used, But again, not essential. Like most herpes, they should be provided with some source of lighting during the day so that they can distinguish day from night. Natural lighting can provide it, or LED lighting can be used in the enclosure, especially if it includes live plants. Always turn off all the lights at night, including the black ones, purple or red, as lights of any color can disrupt your sleep schedule. A ceramic heat emitter can be used instead (THAT).

Cleaning and maintenance

Unless you have a bioactive facility, cleaning the terrarium should be done whenever feces are seen. The substrate must be changed according to the instructions of the brand. Deep clean the enclosure every few months using a mixture 1:1 of white vinegar and water or other reptile-safe disinfectant.

The water bowl should be cleaned and refilled daily, and if it is emptied or soiled with substrate or excrement. All water used to spray the tank must be purified or treated, not distilled.


like all snakes, the Nelson's milksnake is an obligate carnivore. In the wild, these snakes eat small rodents, birds, amphibians, lizards and other snakes. They are not immune, but they are resistant to the venom of native snakes. Captive bred specimens readily eat frozen or thawed mice. Mice should be slightly larger than (until 1,5 times) the thickest part of the snake's body, so that it leaves a small lump after feeding; adults usually eat weaned mice. The young should eat every 5-7 days, the youth each 7-10 days and adults every 10-14 days, depending on how they maintain their body weight.

The Nelson's milksnake you should always have a bowl of clean, fresh water at your disposal. The dish should preferably be large enough for them to soak in if they wish.. No food bowl needed, but a Tupperware lid can be used during feeding to help prevent the substrate from being consumed.


Some good choices are kiln-dried pine, the coconut shell, cypress mulch, a mixture of sand and earth and orchid bark. Poplar chips can be used if the moisture is kept in a 30-40% to prevent the growth of mold and bacteria. A loose substrate must be used so that they can dig, but paper towels are a good substrate to use during quarantine.

Problem solving

Nelson's milksnake
Albino Lampropeltis triangle (Albino Honduran False Coral) – I, WilliamKF, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

My snake does not eat

The Nelson's milksnake they are usually very enthusiastic eaters. First of all, take into account the time you have been with her. Newly acquired snakes usually take a few weeks to eat, since moving from one place to another causes them stress. Also make sure they are cared for properly; check temperatures and humidity levels, and make sure you provide them with plenty of security by using hiding places and foliage, and covering three of the sides. They do accept live prey but not frozen/thawed, try various techniques, how brainless he is, sniffing and pre-killing, to help them switch to dead prey. If you are concerned that you are not eating due to a health problem, or if you are losing a significant amount of weight, take her to the vet.

My snake is not molting at all

If they are given adequate moisture and lots of different textures to rub against as they shed, they shouldn't have any problem removing everything by themselves. A wet stash box or larger water container can help. If they have retained several molt layers, give them a shallow warm bath and carefully wash them off yourself.

My snake is always in its water bowl

First of all, check the humidity levels in the enclosure and make sure they are high enough (30-50%). Next, make sure the surface or ambient temperature is not too high. If humidity and temperatures are on point, consider whether or not the snake is in the shed. If they are, they may just be soaking to help the skin come off. You may want to give them a moist hiding place during this time., so they don't have to be exposed in the water dish. If they're not in the shed, maybe they're just soaking because they like it; However, shouldn't be a constant, as it is a sign of mites or other health problems, and frequent soaking can cause scale rot. if you care, take her to the vet.

Buy one "Nelson's milksnake"

They are usually sold between 70 and 150 EUR. It is always better to buy in exhibitions, small local breeders, reputable online reptile stores or breeders, rather than chain pet stores or large-scale breeders.

Videos "Nelson's milksnake"

My Collection: Nelson's Milk Snakes (Lampropeltis triangulum nelsoni)

#canalreptil lampropeltis Nelsoni

Alternative names:

1. Nelson's milksnake (English).
2. Serpent faux corail, Serpent du lait du Honduras (French).
3. Nelsons Milchschlange (German).
4. Cobra de leite de Nelson, Milksnake de Nelson (Portuguese).
5. "Falsa coral de Honduras", Falsa Coralillo, Serpiente lechera de Nelson (español).

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Puff-faced water snake
- Homalopsis buccata

The Puff-faced water snake inhabits freshwater bodies, like swamps, forest ponds and streams.
Puff-faced water snake
Homalopsis buccata of East Kalimantan – Rob Steubing, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Origin / Distribution

The Puff-faced water snake (Homalopsis buccata) is distributed from India, Bangladesh and Myanmar to most of Southeast Asia, including Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. In Indonesia it is present in Borneo, Sumatra and Java.

Characteristics / Appearance

The Puff-faced water snake is dark brown above, with narrow pale brown transverse bands with black edges, in young specimens of yellow color; pale head with a dark triangular or V-shaped mark on the muzzle, an A-shaped spot on the occiput and a dark band on each side that passes through the eye and extends to before the eye. The lower surface is white or yellowish, with dark brown spots along each side; the tail has brown spots. Head and body length 820 mm; tail 230 mm.


The Puff-faced water snake inhabits freshwater bodies, like swamps, forest ponds and streams. Of nocturnal habits, feeds mainly on small fish or frogs.


It feeds on small crustaceans, fish and amphibians, that it captures using its venom and its jaws, instead of constriction.

Threats to the species

State of conservation ⓘ

Status Minor Concern ⓘ (UICN)ⓘ

The Puff-faced water snake is piscivorous, so she is attracted to fish farms and, often, it is considered a pest.

This snake is frequently hunted for human consumption, for feeding farm crocodiles and leather goods. Millions of Homalopsis skins are exported to the United States and China each year.

No conservation measures are known for this species, although it is known to be present in several protected areas, including the National Park of U Mnh Thuong. Further research is needed to resolve the taxonomy of this group. It also, further research is needed on their abundance, trends and catch levels to ensure that a threat status is not triggered in the future. This species can be bred in captivity.

The "Puff-faced water snake" in captivity

Not suitable for neophytes more than anything due to the presence of medium strength venom. Caution is advised in its handling given the delicacy of the skin but, in general, its handling is quite easy.

The terrarium

Terrarium of 60 x 40 x 60 cm or even higher (it is also recommended 120 x 70 x 100 cm.), being aquatic arboreal, with a substrate of 5 cm of coconut fiber, moss and foliage that provides hiding places and greater absorption. Insertion of many plants and branches is recommended, to allow the creation of dark hiding places highly appreciated by this variety, allowing greater acclimatization and enrichment for the animal. Daily nebulizations should be abundant since these snakes love to drink both from a bowl of water and from the water deposited in the glasses or inside the terrarium..

It is a diurnal tree snake that loves to be in the low branches and in the water where it spends a lot of time..

Daytime temperature 26 – 27 °C; 23 – 24 °C at night; humidity 80/85%.

Buy one "Puff-faced water snake"

The price of a "Puff-faced water snake", in the exotic anomaly market, ranges between 100 – 150 EUR.

Videos "Puff-faced water snake"

Homalopsis buccata

Puff Faced Water Snake (Homalopsis Buccata)

Alternative names:

1. Puff-faced water snake, Masked water snake (English).
2. Homalopside joufflu (French).
3. Boa-Wassertrugnatter (German).
4. Homalopsis buccata (Portuguese).
5. "Serpiente acuática enmascarada", Serpiente de agua careta, Serpiente de agua de Borneo (español).