The effect of cage size on stress levels in captive green anole (Anolis carolinensis)

Reptiles are often used as model species in scientific research and are popular in the pet trade, yet how they cope with captive conditions has not been well studied. Stress caused by captivity could affect the endocrinology, physiology and behaviour of animals, resulting in a general decrease in welfare and could confound the results of […]

A Review of Welfare Assessment Methods in Reptiles, and Preliminary Application of the Welfare Quality registered trademark Protocol to the Pygmy Blue-Tongue Skink, Tiliqua adelaidensis, Using Animal-Based Measures

Reptiles are held at wildlife parks and zoos for display and conservation breeding programs and are increasingly being kept as pets. Reliable indicators of welfare for reptiles need to be identified. Current guidelines for the captive management of reptiles utilize resource-based, rather than animal-based indicators; the latter being a more direct reflection of affective state. […]

Evaluation of Enrichment for Reptiles in Zoos

Studies on environmental enrichment for reptiles are lacking in the scientific literature. Although the literature reflects a limited take on reptile enrichment in the zoological community, it may not be the case in reality as enrichment is generally considered an important aspect of the care of nonhuman animals in captivity. This project investigated the current […]

Comparative neuroendocrinology: A call for more study of reptiles!

Body temperature and thermoregulation of Komodo dragons in the field

Komodo dragons from hatchlings (≈0.1 kg) to adults (≤80 kg) express the full magnitude of varanid species size distributions. We found that all size groups of dragons regulated a similar preferred body temperature by exploiting a heterogeneous thermal environment within savanna, forest and mangrove habitats. All dragons studied, regardless of size, were able to regulate […]

Lizards and landscapes: integrating field surveys and interviews to assess the impact of human disturbance on lizard assemblages and selected reptiles in a savanna in South Africa

Habitat degradation through over-grazing and wood collection is especially prevalent in developing countries such as South Africa. As human populations expand and the demand for land increases, the traditional idiom of setting aside protected areas for conservation is insufficient and assessment and protection of diversity outside these areas is needed. We assessed the impact of […]

Habitat Suitability for Reptiles in the Goravan Sands Sanctuary, Armenia

The Goravan Sands Sanctuary is an important Armenian wildlife conservation area. The objectives of my study were to assess habitat suitability for reptiles within the sanctuary by comparing species richness, total abundance and species diversity across 35 random quadrats. I present the mean abundance of 5 reptiles: Phrynocephalus persicus, Eremais pleskei, Eremias strauchi, Lacerta strigata […]

Behavioral, neurophysiological and evolutionary perspectives on unihemispheric sleep

Several animals mitigate the fundamental conflict between sleep and wakefulness by engaging in unihemispheric sleep, a unique state during which one cerebral hemisphere sleeps while the other remains awake. Among mammals, unihemispheric sleep is restricted to aquatic species (Cetaceans, eared seals and manatees). In contrast to mammals, unihemispheric sleep is widespread in birds, and may […]

Experimental evaluation of environmental enrichment of sea turtles

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20145.abs Although behavioral studies have been conducted at zoos and aquaria for years, documentation concerning the effectiveness of environmental enrichment has dealt primarily with terrestrial animals and marine mammals. Few enrichment studies have been conducted on reptiles. For this study, behavioral observations were made on four captive sea turtles (three loggerhead, Caretta caretta, and […]

Semen collection and evaluation in free-ranging Brazilian rattlesnakes (Crotalus durissus terrificus)

Abstract 10.1002/zoo.20126.abs Two hundred-ninety species of reptiles are estimated to need urgent action for conservation, with at least 113 threatened species worldwide. The International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species includes 80 species of snakes, with six native Brazilian species, a number likely to be an underestimation. […]