Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Reptiles in Belize

There are so many different kinds of reptiles in beautiful Belize and I want to tell you about some that I have seen and held. In San Ignacio, there is a resort that has a green iguana restoration project. The project is to mate and grow them for replenishment in forests. They were in trouble because people were hunting them but now they are protected. We got to go there and visit the iguanas. We got to see them and hold them. My favorite was Gomez. Gomez was a big male iguana who had orange colors because it was mating season. I got to pet him and he looked at me as if it felt real good. He was very smooth and soft and cold, but scaly. He was calm probably because it was a cold day.

The next day we went back to the green iguana restoration project and Eddie, the caretaker, hung 20 baby iguanas on me like a Christmas tree. They were hanging off my hat, my hair, my shoulders, my jacket and the middle of my pants. There were surprisingly calm because if was one of the coldest days yet.

Every day I see iguanas on our island. They aren’t as friendly as the greens and they are a different species. They are spiny tailed iguanas or wish willies. When they get real scared, they run very very fast. They also climb trees and are brownish beige.
We also have salt water crocodiles on our island. We have a big swamp that is loaded with them. A crocodile on our island is 14 feet long and his name is Tommy. There is a guy how works with us named Alton who has an odd way of calling Tommy and the others. It isn’t a whistle and he does not say here boy. Instead he throws a coconut into the brown mangrove water and they have a fake meal. The problem with crocs is that they eat dogs. Other than that, we cannot go swimming at night and don’t get near them in the mating season.

There is another species of croc called the Morelet’s crocodile and its habitat is slow moving freshwater rivers. I held a baby croc during our recent trip to Orange Walk. It liked to sit on my lap. It just laid there and fell asleep. Also there was a smallish boa constrictor that they found crawling around outside our room door. I got to hold it but had to hang on to its head tights so it would not bite. They are no venomous but they do hurt. But it didn’t bite me. That’s all for now. See you later on my next blog.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for your description of reptiles in Belize. I live in southern Oaxaca, and we have alot of the same animals. The other day a big iguana fell out of a tree on my head! Luckily I was wearing a hat! When I looked up, I saw there was another iguana on the branch - they must've been fighting or playing and one lost its balance. She and I were both startled, and she crawled down my arm and away.
    We also have crocs (we call them 'cocodrilos' in Spanish) in the lagunas here, and you're right: they go after the dogs! They can really run fast, so you have to always pay attention at water's edge.
    Have fun!