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December 2012

volume 27, issue 12

Pacific Northwest Herpetological Society Inside this issue: Upcoming Events…


General PNHS info…….


Letter from the President………..……. 4 Help Save Frogs in Madagascar……..…… 6 New Dragon Finder App ……….……………….. 9 PNHS Election Nominees for 2013…………. 10 PNHS Adoption animals…….…………….…. 11 Garbage City’s Snakes……………………... 12

Dangerous snakebite Rise..…...….......... 13 Classified……..…………. 14

Contacts & Vets…………………..


Membership Application….……... 16

December PNHS Newsletter Deadline:

DEC. 30, 2012

Next Meeting:

Sunday, December 9, 2012 5:00 p.m.

Meeting Location: Highline Community College 2400 S. 240th Street, Bldg. 12

Doors Open: 5:00 p.m. All are welcome!

Des Moines, WA

Annual Potluck & Auction 5:00 p.m. Free to attend / Open to the Public Please bring a main dish or side dish to share. Desserts will be auctioned off during the “Dessert Dash.” There will be a Silent Auction Section as well as our Live Auction, featuring a surprise mystery guest auctioneer that will surely be a thrill!

No Speaker and no Herp-of-the Month due to the Potluck & Auction. Come have fun!

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Upcoming PNHS Events Pa g e 2 Kitsap Branch Winter Meetings 2012/2013: Contact Troy Barnhart 360-908-8766 if interested. December 1, 2012:

PNHS Election Ballots mailed

December 9, 2012:

PNHS Annual Potluck/Auction Casual potluck & auction! ( No speaker, herp-ofthe-month, or general meeting ) Bring your favorite main or side dish to share! There will be a dessert auction. Doors open: 5:00 p.m. Auction begins: 6:00 p.m.

January 10, 2013:

Election ballots must be received by the Election Committee by this date to be valid and counted.

January 11, 2013:

PNHS Election Results posted

January 13, 2013:

PNHS General Meeting New Board Members are sworn in at the start of the General Meeting. Speaker: Dr. Tracy Bennett of the Bird & Exotic Clinic of Seattle Herp-of-the-Month: Turtles & Tortoises

January 19, 2013:

Western States Herpetological Societies ’ Leaders Council, Mantequa, California.

Vol. 27 No. 12

General information & guidelines


PNHS’ Monthly Meetings are a great place to learn something new, purchase feeders at a discount, and meet new people

General Information The Pacific Northwest Herpetological Society (PNHS) is a non-profit organization registered with the State of Washington. PNHS is dedicated to the education of its members and the public, as well as the conservation, ecology, and captive care and breeding of reptiles and amphibians. The society also takes an active role in legislative and environmental issues affecting these animals and their habitats. Meeting Information PNHS holds its general meeting on the second Sunday of every month (with exceptions for holidays) at 6:00pm at Highline Community College in Des Moines, Building 12 Room 101. Doors open at 5:30. Other business and socialization occurs between 5:30 and 6; then the General Meeting starts. Meetings are open to the public, and the society encourages anyone with an interest in herpetology to attend. Please purchase a membership to show your support for the society. Animal Donations Looking to adopt, release an animal or donate cages and equipment? Please contact the Adoptions Committee by email at, or by voicemail at 206- 583-0686. We will contact you and make arrangements. Other Donations The Adoption Committee receives minimal financial support from the Society, so donations of money, food, cages, and equipment are always needed and appreciated. Please contact the Adoption Chair to make a donation. Adoptions To adopt an animal that is in the care of the Committee, you must be present at the meeting, be a current member (of at least one month), and be over 18 years of age or have parental consent. For more details contact the Adoption Chair. Newsletter Information In order to keep the newsletter interesting, we encourage contribution of original articles, book reviews, letters, ads, and cartoons for publication. Items for incorporation into articles are also welcome, though with no guarantee of their use. Submissions may be sent to the Newsletter Committee or to the Society through the contacts listed on our Contacts page.

Above: Both Green Tree Python Photos courtesy of the Adams’ Family.

Editorial Policy The views expressed in this publication are solely the views of the authors and not necessarily the views of the Society, its members, or the Newsletter Committee. The Newsletter Committee reserves the right to edit all submissions including advertisements. Join us on Facebook!

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Letter from the President By Brenda Huber

Vol. 27, No.12

How To Cure Mouthrot: With a Potluck/Auction! There’s much going on with PNHS these days! First and foremost, a clarification and update on the Red-Tailed Boa I spoke about in last month’s newsletter. The Center for Bird & Exotic Medicine had given care and treatment to the RTB. Animal Control had scheduled the RTB to be euthanized by Animal Control just two days later. PNHS member Jamie Housman agreed to foster her. According to Jamie, she is doing very well and eating a correctsized meal now (an XXL frozen-thawed rat.) Her colors are coming back and she is gaining some weight, although her ribs are still showing. Her nose rub has gone from being a raw scar to a healthy one. “All in all, she is doing wonderful,” Jamie says. Things are also looking up for Godzilla: PNHS foster “Manda” is slowly but surely improving. You may remember her as the loose Savannah Monitor captured by Animal Control in Puyallup after terrorizing the city and causing several 911 calls. She came to PNHS as an emaciated 770 grams and with a horrific case of mouth rot. (When the vet techs make a face, you know it’s bad…) In two months, she has gained 520 grams, making her a nice 1290 grams. Her mouth rot is showing signs of gradual improvement, according to Dr. Elizabeth Kamaka, of Kamaka Exotic Animal Veterinary Services, in Mountlake Terrace, WA. Dr. Kamaka adContinued...

Vol. 27, No. 12

Letter From The President Continued….

justed the dosage for her antibiotics to accommodate Manda’s weight gain.

Above: Dr. Elizabeth Kamaka holds PNHS rescue “Manda.” Photo by B. Huber

We are blessed to have several phenomenal vets in our area that donate their services, as well as offer PNHS a discount for our current fosters. These veterinary expenses are paid by PNHS. Every time you renew your membership, attend the Emerald City Reptile Expo, or donate to PNHS, more animals can receive the veterinary care that they need.

This Sunday is our annual fundraising Potluck & Auction, starting at 5:00 p.m. on Sunday, December 9th. Please bring a main dish or side to share. We will be auctioning off desserts in our “Dessert Dash.” Plenty of great gift items, as well as herp-related items, will be available to bid on at the Silent Auction Section and during our Live Auction. We’re also thrilled to be offering fund-an-item benefitting “The Mitsinjo Project,” helping the conservation of frogs in Madagascar. Funds raised will go directly to purchase equipment going straight to Madagascar in January of 2013 with Dr. Jennifer Pramuk, of the Woodland Park Zoo. Come for food and fun amongst friends, and help PNHS continue to make a difference in the community. Together, we all can make a difference. Brenda Huber President

Vol. 27, No. 12

Amphibian Conservation in Andasibe, Madagascar: Supporting local livelihoods and ensuring frog survival Text & photos by Dr. Jennifer Pramuk, Woodland Park Zoo

Above, Left: The critically endangered golden mantella (Mantella aurantiaca), a target species of the Andasibe Amphibian Conservation Program. Right: A training workshop in 2011 on amphibian husbandry.

What is it? Madagascar is ranked 12th in amphibian species richness by the International Union on the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and is considered to be one of the highest priority countries for amphibian conservation. Nearly one quarter of the island’s amphibian species are threatened with extinction with habitat alteration and over-harvesting for the pet trade contributing most to this dramatic decline. The impending threat of the amphibian chytrid fungus Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), which is responsible for many of the world’s recent amphibian population declines and extinctions, is also of great concern. In response to the tremendous threats facing Madagascar’s amphibians, a national strategy for amphibian conservation was developed, emphasizing the need for ex-situ conservation action. In response this project was officially launched through a collaborative effort between a community-run organization (Association Mitsinjo), the IUCN, and the Malagasy government. With significant financial support from multiple international agencies, the result was the construction of a captive breeding facility in Andasibe, east-central Madagascar. The goals of this project are the following: 1) Build capacity within Mitsinjo and train technicians to care for and manage captive frog populations. Share knowledge and expertise gained with other organizations and institutions in Madagascar. 2) Conduct husbandry research on local frog species from varied ecological guilds to understand their life histories and captive care requirements, facilitating ex-situ conservation efforts. 3) Establish captive assurance colonies of threatened frog species from the Andasibe-area and develop associated reintroduction and supplementation programs lest they are needed.

Vol. 27, No. 12

Saving Frogs in Madagascar, Continued... In the past two years this project has included facility construction, terrarium building, culturing local feeder insects, and the training of Malagasy technicians. Today, the facility employs 5 fulltime local technicians who maintain and breed five local species of amphibians including the critically endangered golden mantella (Mantella aurantiaca) as well as colonies of multiple species of local insects for feeding the frogs. This is the first captive breeding and amphibian conservation project of its kind in Madagascar. Our hope is that it will not only serve as a model for other range country facilities, but also become a center for training and education in an area of Madagascar that contains tremendous amphibian diversity and endemism. I (Jenny Pramuk from Woodland Park Zoo), have been working since 2008 with my colleagues in Madagascar to develop this project through grant writing and training initiatives. In January 2013, I will be returning there again to help train technicians, advise on husbandry, and develop the next phase of the program which will include an educational and outreach component. When I visit programs abroad like this one, I always take with me much-needed supplies that cannot be sourced in country. The below listed items comprise the items needed very much by the project, items which are difficult if not impossible to source in Madagascar. Your help in acquiring any of these materials for this project would be very greatly appreciated. If you would rather directly support the livelihoods of the people working on this project, you are welcome to help with that as well (in which case, please contact me at

The interior of the frog propagation room inside the facility in Andasibe.


Vol. 27, No. 12

Saving Frogs in Madagascar, Continued Products needed by the amphibian conservation facility in Madagascar: 30 Bulkhead fittings, economy ($4.95 each, Aquatic Ecosystems, part number BKF344): these will be used to finish plumbing the terrariums in the amphibian conservation facility. 30 Strainers, economy ($2.30 each, Aquatic Ecosystems, part number 270556): these will be used to finish plumbing the remaining terrariums in the amphibian conservation facility. 10 boxes of disposable powder-free vinyl gloves (~$5per box. Sizes needed: medium and small [5 of each]) 2 API Freshwater Master Test Kits ($20.00 each, This will allow the technicians to measure the nitrogenous waste products of the tadpoles and adult frogs in the facility. This helps them determine when to perform water changes. 2 Zoo Med 5.0 compact fluorescent UV light bulbs (220Volt: will need to be ordered directly from Zoo Med as these are for the African market): $35 each 1 Zoo Med compact fluorescent fixture (220Volt: will need to be ordered directly from Zoo Med as these are for the African market): $35 each 5 LogTag HAXO-8 dataloggers (with a protective case): $68.00 each. These will enable the technicians to monitor temperature and humidity in the facility and in the field to help them replicate natural conditions in the lab. 1 UV meter (Solartech 6.2): ($219); by taking measurements in the field, this will enable technicians to gauge how much UVB is required by frogs being propagated in the facility. It also will allow them to measure the decay of UV output of light bulbs that provide UVB for the frogs. 1 Bluelab Combo Water Quality Meter (pH, conductivity, and temperature): $250, This will allow the technicians to measure the pH of the water in tadpole aquariums and in the field. 1 VIE 6 ml Elastomer kit ($250) from This product will enable the technicians to mark (harmlessly) endangered, captive-bred golden mantella frogs released back into the wild so that they can monitor their survivorship in the wild.

Join us at PNHS’ Annual Potluck & Auction and help save frogs in Madagascar!

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Vol. 27, No. 12

The Dragon Finder: Thar Be Dragons! (Oh, Actually It’s A Newt) Reprinted with permission from HerpDigest, Vol. 12, Issue #56, 11/26/12

Sacramento Bee, Calfornia) 11/5/12 via London (PRNewswire): Froglife (, the UK's dedicated amphibian and reptile charity has asked Incentivated to create "The Dragon Finder" - a smartphone app which will allow people to identify amphibian and reptile species within the UK, record their sightings and find out more about individual species. Based upon Froglife's existing database, the app - which will initially be available on iOS and Android devices, along with a mobile website - will provide users with useful species information, and allow people to submit a finding form which will include the name of the species (which can be automatically determined through a comparison page) location data and for app users to upload a photo of the animal, which will help researchers at the charity to re-confirm the identity of the animal identified. The app is part of a new Froglife Trust project called Dragon Finder which has been funded by a ÂŁ472,500 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The project will enable the amphibian and reptile charity to help people find, identify and map these tiny dragons in London. The four and A new Froglife half year scheme will involve thousands of local people and Trust project see volunteers recording newts, lizards and snakes in the city, improving habitats for them and celebrating these help cretive animals.

people find, identify and map these tiny dragons in London.

Being able to identify a little dragon at the point it has been spotted, rather than having to wait until you get back home to log on to a website, by which time the details may be a bit 'hazy' is seen as important in increasing the accuracy of our knowledge of the populations of these species..

Victoria Ogilvy, Froglife: "There are very few school children today who take part in species recording. We believe providing access through the use of new technologies will encourage more young people to take part, which is vital for maintaining a population of recorders throughout the generations. By using mobile technology people are more likely to upload their data because this can be done on the spot - even in remote areas and mobile location technology, such as GPS, can allow highly accurate mapping of sightings as well."

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Vol. 27, No. 12

Dragon Finder App, Continued‌. Jason Cross, Marketing Director, Incentivated: "This is a great way for a small charity to use mobile as a way of connecting and engaging with younger people. By creating a service that takes advantage of the inherent strengths of mobile, this is a clear example of using Lottery funding to provide a service that supports the core needs of the charity, rather than creating an app for the sake of having an app. The fact that it's always on you, has accurate location technology, and can access and bring to life complicated information for people of all ages in a simple way, allows mobile to be a useful tool as we increase our overall knowledge about the UK's native wildlife."

PNHS Election Nominees for 2013: Vice President : Elise Erickson Secretary : Ted Adams Membership Secretary : Shauna Adams Members-At-Large : (7 nominees for 5 positions:) Theo Adams Troy Barnhart Cecilia Cooney-Wickett Mary Fuller Jennifer Lovett Julie Sharkey Allison Vlaun Remember to mail your ballots ASAP Ballots must be received by January 10th, 2013.

Vol. 27, No. 12

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PNHS ADOPTION ANIMALS These are just a select few of the many adoption animals PNHS has available. Please contact Adoptions Coordinator Allison Vlaun ( if interested in fostering or adopting. PNHS receives calls and emails from people wanting to surrender animals every day. If you’re looking for a particular reptile or amphibian, let us know!

“Colonel Sanders” Ball Python; “Kitty” Ball Python (pictured together)

Baby Rosy Boa #1



Ball Python

Ball Python



Gopher Snake

Thrasher’s Variable Kingsnake

There are many more animals currently in our foster system that are not ready for adoption. Please contact Adoptions Coordinator Allison Vlaun for details, or consider fostering an animal in need.





Ball Python

Savannah Monitor

Leopard Gecko

Black & White Tegu

Vol. 27, No. 12

Snakes Feed on Garbage City’s Rats Reprinted with Permission from Herpdigest Vol. 12, Issue #56, 11/26/12

Bangalore India, Times of India, New Delhi, 11/7/12 After rats, it's snakes. Bangalore's growing rat colonies among the garbage piles are luring snakes which feed on them. The sudden appearance of the reptiles in some residential areas has sparked off an alarm in a city struggling to deal with diseases spawned by garbage. The BBMP control room registered a marked increase in complaints about the appearance of snakes. "We usually get about 15-20 calls a month from residential areas to capture snakes. Now we get at least three complaints a day from across the city," said a control room official. A few days ago, Sharat Babu, an environmental adviser with the BBMP's environment cell, rescued a red sand boa in Vyalikaval. On Tuesday, the BBMP received a call from residents of Police Quarters, Marappana Palya, Malahakshmi Layout, that a snake had been sighted. "Around 9am, women from our quarters spotted a snake moving around. We called the BBMP control room, which gave us a snake-catcher's number. It wasn't of much help," said Chenna Byregowda, a driver who lives in Marappana Palya. Byregowda said this was the first time a snake had been sighted here. "I don't know what the cause is, but there's a sudden increase in rodents in our area." He confirmed that waste collection is irregular, and there's a huge garbage heap next to the quarters. The failure to dispose of solid waste effectively has led to a new problem: snakes in the city. BBMP claims its control room receives two or three complaints a day about snakes being sighted. BBMP's role is limited: it provides phone numbers of snakecatchers and there ends the issue. "Ideally, snake-catchers should report to us, but they don't do so regularly . We don't have a record of what happened to the complaints received," a control room official pointed out. According to Sharat Babu, environmental adviser with the BBMP's environment cell, rats attract snakes which feed on them. "Rodents mate only when they find enough food around. They appear wherever there are garbage heaps and multiply," he added. Ten months ago, a pourakarmika found a box in a garbage heap in Yelahanka and opened it to find a 9-foot long python in it. Ironically, rats also render snakes impossible to catch. "If a snake enters a rat hole, it's not easy to catch it. At times, rat holes span a length of around 0.5km," said Deepak Reddy , who works with the BBMP wildlife rescue team.

Vol. 27, No. 12

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Center Admits 2,806 Snake Bite Patients Reprinted with permission from Herpdigest Vol. 12, Issue #56, 11/26/12

PM News Lagos, Nigeria 11/7/12: At least 2,806 patients were admitted at the Snake Bite Treatment and Research Centre, Kaltungo, Gombe State from January to November, 2012. The Medical Officer in Charge of the Centre, Dr Habu Ballah, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kaltungo on Tuesday. He said of the figure 33 patients died owing to the delay in reaching the centre, while four others died on arrival at the centre. Dr Ballah recalled that 316 patients attended the centre in 2011, saying the existing figure was higher owing to factors such as flooding, lack of awareness of treatment at the centre and increase in farming activities. He said apart from the state, patients were brought from Taraba, Plateau, Bauchi, Adamawa, Jigawa, Kano, Yobe and even Cameroun. “Last year, we recorded about 316 patients, but this year we are going to have more than that. “The increase is due to awareness on the part of the patients on the services here, flooding that took place this year which made the snakes to be in the land and the engagements in the farms as civil servants engaged in farming,” he said. According to him, in the six days of November we so far have about 90 patients and the increase is due to harvesting and flooding.

“Last year, we recorded about 316 patients,” 

Dr. Habu Ballah, Chief Medical Officer, Gombe State, Nigeria

He said before this month, an average of 12 patients were brought to the centre daily, but added that the figure increased to 19 because of harvesting season and flooding. Ballah advised people in the snake infested areas to wear boots and gloves when working in the nights, leave markets and farms early as the snakes start coming out from 6.30 p.m. He commended women in Kaltungo for building and donating a ward at the centre. He commended the Rotary Club of Greenwich, England, for providing 70 vials of drugs and some philanthropists in the state who donated drugs, mattresses as well as the 11 Local Governments in the state which gave N5.5 million worth of drugs.


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Screaming Roaches!*** Dubia Roaches For Sale All sizes available -Our roaches are gutloaded with Repashy “Superload” as well as a mixture of fresh fruits and vegetables. Your herps will love them! *** They’re roaches; I’m screaming. Please save me by

contacting: Join the Global Gecko Association Today! The GGA is a six year old international organization dedicated to the needs of all people interested in geckos. Members receive the twice-yearly, full-color journal, “Gekko”, plus “Chit-Chat”, our quarterly newsletter. Annual Membership is $32 US, $34 Canada/Mexico, $36 Overseas. Email: (503)-436-1064 or

Feeder Insects & Rodents I have superworms, giant mealworms, and lots more! Plus, I now carry frozen rodents. Order in advance: special pricing for PNHS members,,as well as quantity discounts!

Bean Farm’s Creative Habitats Slide-Top Aquariums Various sizes available. We can deliver the cages to the meetings, as well as any other item from the Bean Farm catalogue.

For pick up and PNHS meeting delivery.

Please contact us by the Friday before the meeting in order for items to be delivered. Thank you!

Jennifer Sronce (425) 750-0477

Paula & Giovani Fagioli (877) 708-5882


Advertise in the PNHS Newsletter! Business Card .............................$5 Quarter Page................................$10 Half Page ....................................$15 Full Page .....................................$25 If you would like to place an ad in the PNHS newsletter, please contact: GET PUBLICITY FOR YOUR BUSINESS & SUPPORTING PNHS!

Vol. 27, No. 12

Contact Information PNHS P.O. Box 27542

General information: 206-628-4740

Seattle, WA 98165


Join us on Facebook!


Area Representatives N King & Snohomish

Brenda Huber 206-334-7168

S King & Pierce

Dale Drexler

Greater Seattle

Brenda Huber 206-334-7168

Kitsap, Island

Troy Barnhart


Elizabeth Freer 503-436-1064



Officers for 2012 President

Brenda Huber


Brenda Huber

Vice President

Brandon Winter


Dale Drexler


Teresa Montoya

Join us on FACEBOOK!

Membership Secretary Julie Sharkey Members-At-Large

Ted Adams David Brunnelle Carol Dean Matt Lee Julie Sharkey

Event Coordinator

Norm Hill

Newsletter Editor

Marian Huber

Adoptions Coordinator Allison Vlaun

Above: PNHS rescue Black & White Tegu, “Wallace,” continues to grow and thrive in the care of PNHS fosters, Troy & Kathlene Barnhart.

Recommended EXOTIC VETS Dr. Tracy Bennett

Dr. Elizabeth Kamaka

Dr. Adolf Maas

Dr. Daniel Lejnieks

Bird & Exotic Clinic of Seattle

Kamaka Exotic Animal Veterinary Services

The Center For Bird & Exotic Animal Medicine

4019 Aurora Ave. N.

23914—56th Ave. W. #3

11401 NE 195th St.

Seattle, WA 98107

Mountlake Terrace, WA 98043

Bothell, WA 98011

(206) 783-4538

(425) 361-2183

(425) 486-9000


To join PNHS, please print & complete the following application, enclose your yearly or multi-yearly membership fee and return to: PNHS Membership Secretary P.O. Box 27542 Seattle, WA 98165 Membership applications and fees may also be received at the monthly meetings by the Membership Secretary. With your yearly or multi-year membership fee you will receive the monthly PNHS E-Newsletter, access to membership pricing for adoption animals, and the opportunity to participate in the many outreaches and special “Members Only” events held throughout the year.

Please select one of the options below:

Please select your preferred membership category: Individual Membership (One person)

Family Membership (1-2 parents + Children)

Institutional Membership (Institutions/Organizations)

Correspondence Membership (E-Newsletter Only)

Please select the format in which you would like to receive your newsletter: Today’s Date: ___________________________ Joining Kitsap Branch? Yes____No____ Name(s) (please print clearly): ______________________________________________ Parent or Guardian (if member is a minor): ___________________________________ Address: ______________________________________________________________ City: ____________________________________ State: _____ Zip: ______________ Email Address: ________________________________________________________ Phone: _______________________________________________________________ Would you be interested in volunteering for PNHS: YES / NO Please make checks payable to PNHS. Thank you! PNHS only: Membership Expiration Date: _______________________ Contacted: ____

December 2012 PNHS Newsletter  

Monthly newsletter of the Pacific Northwest Herpetological Society

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