JBL Workshop Vietnam 2013

In search of reptiles and amphibians

Unbelievable but true: the participants found the most snakes on the hotel premises! This may have been less due to the fact that a lot of snakes live on the hotel premises, than to the fact that it is easier to search inside the various bushes and trees from the paths; it is very difficult in the rainforest. Non-poisonous species, such as Calliophis maculiceps, but also poisonous species, such as Psammodynastes pulverulentus and a Green pit viper, were observed and photographed. In the rainforest of Hon Ba the participants Dr. Birgit Rüschoff and Marion Minde both thought they hit the jackpot. They spotted a lizard on the wayside and wanted to take a photo when they noticed a snake in the background, just about to sneak up the lizard. One second later the snake had eaten the lizard. But both participants had to curse their camera batteries, which chose just that moment to expire.

Ba Ho Waterfalls

At the Ba Ho Waterfalls we caught a non-poisonous radiated ratsnake (Elaphe radiata), which was just swimming through the river. Unfortunately we only managed to spot one single whip snake.

Expedition in the hotel grounds

The hotel grounds provided interest and diversity for the frog enthusiast too. From the bullfrog to various toad species - there was a lot to discover. Some of the participants spotted a bubble nest created by frogs (probably by bullfrogs) on the rocks in the Hon Ba region. On closer inspection look they found a snake (possibly Amphiesma sp.), looking for food INSIDE the bubble nest.

Moorish geckos were always there, scurrying around the hotel walls and ceilings in the outdoor area. We counted more than 10 animals within one square metre. Not far away was also the tokee gecko, a natural predator of the other geckos. These lizards, which are about 30 cm long, were lurking in the shade waiting to eat luckless geckos.

Jungle of the Ba Ho Waterfalls

We observed a lot of skinks (Sphenomorphus) in the jungle of the Ba Ho Waterfalls and also some mountain horned dragons (Calotes). Rainer König was lucky enough to discover a water dragon (Physignathus).