Like most adult inner-city dwellers I rarely encounter reptiles and, when I do, they are usually in the form of lollies, like the impulse-buy giant multicoloured pythons at convenience store counters. Then there are the packets of jelly snakes often supplied at corporate training sessions, interdepartmental brainstorms and kids’ parties.
When faced with a bowl of jelly snakes, I still dive in for a red one first, I still stretch them out until they snap (or almost snap depending on mood) and gobble them head first with gusto and childish delight.
Mental note to self: okay to do at kids’ parties but not so impressive with senior museum managers.
In this episode of ‘Access all Areas’ we visit a chameleon who has a special permit to be an Australian citizen, a skink couple, the skink wrangler, lizard researchers and a real (not jelly) snake handler.
Join us in an audio encounter of the reptilian kind.
P.S. Sing “We’re off to see the lizards … the wonderful lizards of Oz because because because because because … because because!”
Download MP3 | Subscribe via RSS
Leela, Veiled Chameleon. Photographer: Alan Henderson, Source: Museum Victoria| Dr Jane Melville identifying a snake (Elaphe dione) in Kazakhastan, Central Asia. Source: Museum Victoria | Sign at Scienceworks. A few tiger snakes have crawled on the campus. (Dr Andi)
Find out more about Jane Melville and her students' research projects; visit her website Herpetology Research at Museum Victoria
Jane’s paper on new dragon lizard species:
Doughty P., B. Maryan, J. Melville, and J.J. Austin. 2007. A new species of Ctenophorus (Lacertilia: Agamidae) from Lake Disappointment, Western Australia. Herpetologica 63(1): 72-86.
Leela the veiled Chameleon has her own facebook account.
Otherwise check out these sites that show X-rays of Leela’s pregnancies:
Why is our chameleon getting so fat?
Alan Henderson, Deanna Henderson and Jessie Sinclair from Museum Victoria Live Exhibits laboratory have written a book together called Bugs Alive! A guide to keeping Australian Invertebrates.
Carolyn McLennan - Project assistant, History and Technology and Veiled Chameleon
Alan Henderson - Coordinator of Live Exhibits
Dr Jane Melville - Senior Curator of Terrestrial Vertebrates
Susie Maldonado - Science Honours Student (MV & University of Melbourne)
Angela Muscat - Coordinator Science & Astronomy, Public programs, Scienceworks
Mr Archie Cuthbertson - Podcast Recording Services
"I want to go back to Michigan" Edison Cylinder Recording, from the Museum Victoria collection. (And stay tuned for more from this wonderful collection in the coming weeks!)