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Monarto Zoo World's first breeding of......

Discussion in 'Australia' started by kiang, 24 Feb 2016.

  1. kiang

    kiang Well-Known Member Premium Member

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  2. vogelcommando

    vogelcommando Well-Known Member

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    Great story, thanks for sharing kiang ! Hopefully some other zoos can also start to keep and breed this species to ensure its survaival.
     
  3. Hix

    Hix Wildlife Enthusiast and Lover of Islands Premium Member

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    That's actually really good news, although I wouldn't say it was "recently" rediscovered as it was 24 years ago they found them.

    It was a really good story too. Pretty much every amateur and professional herpetologist in South Australia (and a good many from other states, too) had been looking for the lizard over the years, it was like the Thylacine except there were never any 'sightings'. The problem was nobody really knew where it was found, and South Australia is quite large and, in many parts, desert. Remote, arid, and uninhabited.

    In '92 a survey team from the South Australian Museum were surveying wildlife in part of SA well north of Adelaide but still in an inhabited area. While driving along they saw a dead brown snake, a roadkill, on the side of the road and so they stopped and collected it for the Museum's collection. The herpetologist noticed the snake had recently fed as there was a noticeable bulge in it's belly so he dissected it open on the side of the road and a pygmy bluetongue rolled out.

    The rediscovery was kept secret and an intensive search followed a few weeks later to see if they could find some live specimens. It took a while but eventually they did - the adult lizards are so small they spend much of their life living in spider holes (not sure if they eat the original inhabitant or if they just look for abandoned holes).

    Until recently only Adelaide Zoo kept them on display, and when I last visited the zoo in 2010 they were down to one, and it wasn't on display. :( Good to know Monarto has finally cracked the secret to breeding them and with luck will replicate this feat again in the near future.

    :p

    Hix
     
  4. Kifaru Bwana

    Kifaru Bwana Well-Known Member

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    Hope the Monarto example may propel Adelaide Zoo to come on board as well and restart their breeding project work with pygmy blues proper.

    Nonetheless, a great special breeding success achievement by Monarto herptile staff!!! Well done to them.
     
  5. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    Adelaide Zoo never really stopped working with them, they were down to one in 2009/10 but then brought in a new group of eight from the wild in 2010/11 (and some more later). The ones at Monarto are a different group, captured from the wild last year.
     
  6. Kifaru Bwana

    Kifaru Bwana Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for updating the info.

    One would think that with the new info on how to achieve breeding success the chances for the Adelaide group have also significantly increased.

    What is the current status for the pygmy blues in both zoos?
     
  7. Chlidonias

    Chlidonias Moderator Staff Member

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    with the 14 bred young I guess it should be just over 40 animals total, but I don't have exact numbers right at the moment.