There are Reptiles Everywhere is a beautifully illustrated guide to creatures that often we don’t see, but are very important to our ecosystems. Some may be in your back yard, but others live in jungles or in the savannah. This book shows young readers where reptiles are found, and wonderful reasons why they exist. The personality and spark from this book should hopefully cure reptile fear!
We don’t have many venomous reptiles in England, but keep dogs away from adders (bites are medical emergencies). Dog-Friendly Cornwall has tips on when to avoid walking (‘safe hours’ were previously before 9am and after 7pm), but rising temperatures now means you may have to adapt to avoid basking snakes – see post for more info.
Reptile welfare experts say housing captive snakes in ”glass jewel boxes’ is not good, as enclosures should be more like large swamps. If you find a loose snake (more likley a legless grass snake or glow worm), Amphibian & Reptile Conservation has advice and local volunteers).
Sand lizards are another main reptile, but these now are suffering as they are over-eaten, due to the shooting industry over-breeding pheasants. Millions of these beautiful birds are over-bred to be shot (most people don’t kill them so they suffer and die slowly). Pheasants are native to Asia, so here they naturally eat sand lizards and baby adders, in excess due to so many pheasants being bred. Sand lizards are also endangered due to their sandy dunes disappearing, so always keep to pathways on dune areas (like the east coast) to avoid stepping on their homes.
A Day in the Life of Snakes is a book to educate young readers on what rattlesnakes, vipers and black mambas do all day. Obviously snakes can be pretty scary, but they still form an important part of our ecosystem. In this book (set over 24 hours), a biologist conservationist (and expert on snakes) journeys around the world to follow the lives of these cold-blooded reptiles as they hunt, hide and fight their way through the day. In the style of a nature documentary, the book tells the story of the world’s venomous snakes and includes information on camouflage and skin shedding. Witness a king cobra defending her eggs from a mongooese, a paradise flying snake soaring through the air to escape a predator and a spider-tailed viper using its tail to catch birds.