2018 so far!

My first few outings in 2018 have been relatively successful here on Phuket. In terms of snakes over the course of the Christmas holidays I have seen a female Phuket pit viper (Trimeresurus phuketensis), a Malayan krait (Bungarus candidus), a mock viper (Psammodynastes pulverulentus), a green cat snake (Boiga cyanea), a red-necked keelback (Rhabdophis subminiatus), an Oriental rat snake (Ptyas mucosa) and an Asian vine snake (Ahaetulla prasina). Although some of these were found just before the new year during the Christmas break 😉 In addition, some other nice finds have been the Spotted Wood owl (Strix seloputo) and the Sunda flying lemur (Galeopterus variegatus) among others.

All the best for 2018!

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By Matt Wilson

Khao Sok and Krabi report coming soon..

Just got back from a seven day trip to Khao Sok National Park and Krabi province in southern Thailand. Despite spending some time just relaxing, some very windy and dare I say ‘cold’ weather, we found a number of very nice species. The highlight for me was this female Wagler’s pit viper (Tropidolaemus wagleri). What a beauty!

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By Matt Wilson

Recent finds

Not too much to report recently but a couple of nice finds include a Green cat snake (Boiga cyanea) found crossing the road one rainy evening near where I live. Another day Kat phoned to say she had spotted a Phuket pit viper (Trimeresurus phuketensis) sitting in ambush during the daytime. I went to have a look after work and it was still there, thanks to the guys at the Gibbon Rehabilitation Project for allowing me to look at the snake which was on their premises. A Monocled cobra (Naja kaouthia) was filmed in my neighbor’s yard this week but I wasn’t around at the time to help locate it and a large Sunbeam snake (Xenopeltis unicolor)  was found killed on the road one morning.

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By Matt Wilson

Khao Sok: a quick search

While I was on a trip with students this week I had a couple of hours to head out into the evergreen forests of Khao Sok National Park where I found a number of nice species. You can read a very short report here or by clicking on the ‘Thailand trip reports’ tab.

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One of two large Wagler’s pit vipers (Tropidolaemus wagleri) I found during the few free hours I had.

 

By Matt Wilson

A nice discovery..

As well as trying to be an awesome teacher now I live on Phuket I also want to work closely with the local herpetofauna when I am able to, maybe even helping in their conservation. Last night, Kat and I had a fantastic find of a male Phuket pit viper (Trimeresurus phuketensis) in a part of the island where this species has not been found before. They were only previously known from one area of Phuket and it is great news for the species that they do indeed live elsewhere in the little suitable habitat that remains here. Furthermore at this same location I also saw a large adult individual of the Phuket bent-toed gecko (Cyrtodactylus phuketensis), again the first time this species has been found in this part of the island.

I have also made a dedicated Phuket photo album which I will continue to update each time I find something interesting. Click here to view the album.

ESP: Además de intentar ser un profe estúpendo ahora que vivo en Phuket también quiero trabajar de cerca con la herpetofauna local cuando pueda, tal vez ayudándolos en su conservación. Anoche, Kat y yo tuvimos un encuentro fantástico de un macho de la víbora de Phuket (Trimeresurus phuketensis) en una parte de la isla en la que no se ha visto previamente la especie. Hasta ahora, se conocían ser presente en solamente una zona de Phuket y se trata de una buena noticia para la especie que de hecho vive en otros lugares en el hábitat reducido que queda allí. Además en esta misma zona vi un individuo grande del gecko (Cyrtodactylus phuketensis), la primera vez que esta especie ha sido encontrada en esta parte de la isla. 

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Phuket pit viper (Trimeresurus phuketensis)

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Phuket pit viper (Trimeresurus phuketensis)

By Matt Wilson

The three amigos: many species in only a few hours!

This weekend there were two visitors to the island, Borja de las Heras and Glenn Bowley. Friday evening with only a few hours before Borja’s return flight we went out and found some nice species in the limited time we had, they included: Ptyas korros (rescued from a canal), Xenochropis flavipunctatus (rescued from a busy road) and then Borja was on fire, finding three specimens of the beautiful gecko Cyrtodactylus oldhami together with a Lycodon capucinus. After saying goodbye to Borja, Glenn and I found a Reticulated python (Python reticulatus) crossing the road. Great! The second evening, Glenn and I spent a few hours searching in the forest and among other things we found a beautiful vivid specimen of Dendrelaphis formosus and a male Phuket pit viper (Trimeresurus phuketensis)!

ESP: Este fin de semana había dos visitantes en la isla, Borja de las Heras y Glenn Bowley. El viernes por la noche con solamente unas pocos horas antes del vuelo de ida de Borja, salimos y encontramos unas especies bonitas durante el tiempo limitado que tuvimos, incluyeron: Ptyas korros (rescatado de un canal), Xenochropis flavipunctatus (rescatado de una carreterra ocupada) y luego Borja hacía muy bien, encontrándose tres especímenes del gecko hermoso Cyrtodactylus oldhami junto con un Lycodon capucinus. Después de decirle adiós a Borja, Glenn y yo encontramos a un pitón reticulado (Python reticulatus) cruzando la carretera. Genial! La segunda noche, Glenn y yo pasamos unas pocas horas buscando en el bosque y entre otros se dejaron ver un espécimen brillante de Dendrelaphis formosus y un macho de la víbora de Phuket (Trimeresurus phuketensis).

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By Matt Wilson

Mangrove visit during Krathong!

Having not been well most of the week I had to cancel any visit to the forest this weekend and instead Kat and I went to see the local Krathong celebrations on the coast for an hour tonight. Thankfully there were some nice mangroves here and after searching the edges with a torch we found three Dog-faced water snakes (Cerberus rynchops), three Gerard’s water snakes (Gerarda prevostiana) and a Mangrove pit viper (Trimeresurus purpureomaculatus). Not bad for a quick search! The following evening the viper mentioned previously was still there but this time sitting on a walkway waiting to ambush prey.

ESP: Ya que me sentía mal la mayor parte de la semana tuve que cancelar alguna visita a la selva este finde y en cambio Kat y yo fuimos a ver las celebraciones locales de Krathong en la costa para una hora esta noche. Afortunadamente había unos mangles buenos allí y después de buscar las orillas con una linterna encontramos tres Cerberus rynchops, tres Gerarda prevostiana y una víbora del mangle (Trimeresurus purpureomaculatus). ¡Nada mal para una búsqueda rápida! La tarde siguiente la víbora mencionada anteriormente aún estaba allí pero esta vez se sentaba en una pasarela de madera esperando sus presas. 

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By Matt Wilson

Koh Yao Noi island

We spent a night on this peaceful island which is about 20 minutes away by boat from Phuket. I was there on a family trip but some interesting species were seen around the accommodation, including a Ornate flying snake (Chrysopelea ornata) which I caught as it crossed my balcony.

ESP: Pasamos una noche en esta isla tranquila la que se ubica a unos veinte minutos de Phuket en barco. Estuve allí para una visita familiar pero algunas especies interesantes se dejaron ver por nuestro alojamiento, incluso una serpiente voladora (Chrysopelea ornata), a la que cogí mientras que cruzaba mi balcón.

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By Matt Wilson

Gradually the rains are decreasing…

Gradually, the rains have decreased this past few weeks which have allowed for some visits to the forest without getting wet! Two recent visits to different parts of the island resulted in the same male of Trimeresurus phuketensis being found together with two Dryocalamus subannulatus, a Pareas carinatus, Rhabdophis nigrocinctus and an individual of Psammodynastes pulverulentus sitting in ambush on a step meters away from some houses. Furthermore, this week I found a Ptyas korros injured by a motorbike which was released without any serious complications.

ESP: Poco a poco las lluvias han disminuidas esta última semana lo que nos ha permitido visitar la selva sin mojarse! Dos visitas recientes en zonas diferentes de la isla han resultado en ver al mismo macho de Trimeresurus phuketensis junto con dos Dryocalamus subannulatus, un Pareas carinatus, Rhabdophis nigrocinctus y un individuo de Psammodynastes pulverulentus se amboscaba en un escalón unos metros lejos de unas casas. Además, esta semana encontré a un Ptyas korros herido por una moto lo que se liberó sin complicaciones graves. 

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By Matt Wilson