Reptiles of Cambodia
The Siamese crocodile is a freshwater crocodile native to Indonesia, Brunei, East Malaysia, Laos, Cambodia, Burma, Thailand, and Vietnam. The species is critically endangered and already gone from many regions.
The Siamese crocodile is a small, freshwater crocodilian, with a relatively broad, smooth snout and an elevated, bony crest behind each eye. Overall, it is an olive-green colour, with some variation to dark-green. Young specimens measure 1.2–1.5 m (3.9–4.9 ft) and weigh 6–12 kg (13–26 lb), growing up to 2.1 m (6.9 ft) and a weight of 40–70 kg (88–154 lb) as an adult. The largest female specimens can measure 3.2 m (10 ft) and weight 150 kg (330 lb) Large male specimens can reach 4 m (13 ft) and 350 kg (770 lb) in weight. Most adults do not exceed 3 m (10 ft) in length, although hybrids in captivity can grow much larger.
The historic range of the Siamese crocodile included most of Southeast Asia. This species is now extinct in the wild or nearly extinct from most countries except Cambodia. Formerly it was found in Cambodia, Indonesia (Borneo and possibly Java), Laos, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam, Brunei, and Burma.
Siamese crocodiles occur in a wide range of freshwater habitats, including slow-moving riv-
ers and streams, lakes, seasonal oxbow lakes, marshes and swamplands.
It is one of the most endangered crocodiles in the wild, although it is extensively bred in captivity.
The Burmese python is one of the five largest species of snakes in the world (about the third-largest as measured either by length or weight). It is native to a large variation of tropic and subtropic areas of South and Southeast Asia.
They are often found near water and are sometimes semi-aquatic, but can also be found in trees. Wild individuals average 3.7 m (12.1 ft) long, but have been known to reach 5.74 m (18.8 ft) Burmese pythons are found throughout Southern and Southeast Asia, Burmese pythons are also reported from Kinmen, very close to the Chinese mainland, but in Taiwanese territory; the Burmese python belongs to the fauna of Taiwan when Taiwan refers to the Republic of China, but not to the island of Taiwan.
These pythons are excellent swimmers and need a permanent source of water. They can be found in grasslands, marshes, swamps, rocky foothills, woodlands, river valleys, and jungles with open clearings. They are good climbers and have prehensile tails.
Burmese pythons are mainly nocturnal rainforest dwellers. When young, they are equally at home on the ground and in trees, but as they gain girth, they tend to restrict most of their movements to the ground. They are also excellent swimmers, being able to stay submerged for half an hour.
Like all snakes, the Burmese python is carnivorous. Its diet consists primarily of appropriately sized birds and mammals. The snake uses its sharp rearward-pointing
teeth to seize its prey, then wraps its body around it, at the same time contracting its muscles, killing it by constriction.
The green sea turtle, also known as the green turtle, black (sea) turtle, or Pacific green turtle, is a large sea turtle of the family Cheloniidae. It is the only species in the genus Chelonia. Its range extends throughout tropical and subtropical seas around the world, with two distinct populations in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The common name comes from the usually green fat found beneath its carapace.
This sea turtle’s dorsoventrally flattened body is covered by a large, teardrop-shaped carapace; it has a pair of large, paddle-like flippers. It is usually lightly colored, although in the eastern Pacific populations parts of the carapace can be almost black. Unlike other members of its family, such as the hawksbill sea turtle, The Green Sea Turele is mostly herbivorous. The adults usually inhabit shallow lagoons, feeding mostly on various abundant species of seagrasses.
Like other sea turtles, green sea turtles migrate long distances between feeding grounds and hatching beaches. Many islands worldwide are known as Turtle Island due to green sea turtles nesting on their beaches. Females crawl out on beaches, dig nests and lay eggs during the night. Later, hatchlings emerge and scramble into the water. The baby turtles that reach maturity may live to eighty years in the wild.
It is listed as endangered by the IUCN and CITES and is protected from exploitation in most countries. It is illegal to collect, harm or kill them. In addition, many countries have laws and ordinances to protect nesting areas. However, turtles are still in danger due to human activity. In some countries, turtles and their eggs are hunted for food. Pollution indirectly harms turtles at both population and individual scales. Many turtles die caught in fishing nets. Also, real estate development often causes habitat loss by eliminating nesting beaches.
Adult green sea turtles mostly eat marine plant life such as kelp and algae, while juveniles have a more carnivorous diet
The golden flying snake is found in both South and Southeast Asia. It is very unusual in that it is capable of a type of gliding flight. It is also rearfanged. The snake’s striking looks and capability of gliding make it a popular choice for captivity around the world.
Chrysopelea ornata is usually green in color, with black cross-hatching and yellow or gold colored accents. The body, though slender, is far less so than in other tree snakes. It has a flattened head with constricted neck, a blunt nose and large eyes with round pupils.
This snake ranges from 11.5 to 130 cm (0.38 to 4.27 ft) long. Maturity is reached at about 1 m (3.3 ft) in length. The tail is about one-fourth of the total length.
Chrysopelea ornata is diurnal and arboreal. The snake’s gliding ability, while not as impressive as that of the paradise flying snake (C. paradisi), still makes it capable of moving from tree to tree with relative ease. These snakes are excellent climbers, being able move across even the smallest of branches and even straight up trees with few branches by using the edges of rough bark. They are frequently seen moving up a coconut palm, or up vertical rock faces in graceful curves, gripping the somewhat uneven surfaces with their impressive scales.
They tend to be nervous, fast-moving snakes, and will attempt to flee if disturbed, but will not generally hesitate to bite if handled. They are mildly venomous, but the venom is not considered to be dangerous to humans. It is intended to assist in subduing fast moving, arboreal prey. C. ornata takes small arboreal prey, such as lizards, bats and small rodents.
Chrysopelea ornata, like others of its genus, glides or parachutes. This is presumably done to cover distances faster, to escape predators, to catch prey, or to move around in forests. Flying snakes usually parachute from tree to tree, but sometimes launch themselves from trees onto the ground. They have been known to cross as much as 100m.
The false gharial also known as the Malayan gharial and Sunda gharial is a freshwater crocodilian with a very thin and elongated snout. It is listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN, as the population is estimated at less than 2,500 mature individuals.
The false gharial has one of the slimmer snouts of any living crocodilian, perhaps comparable to the slender-snouted crocodile and the freshwater crocodile in the extent of slenderness, only that of the gharial is noticeably more slim. The false gharial is a large crocodilian, measuring only slightly smaller than the gharial. Three mature males kept in captivity measured 3.6 to 3.9 m (11 ft 10 in to 12 ft 10 in) and weighed 190 to 210 kg (420 to 460 lb), while a female measured 3.27 m (10 ft 9 in) and weighed 93 kg (205 lb).
In some cases, males can reportedly grow to as much as 5 m (16 ft) in length. Females have been recorded at lengths of up to 4 m (13 ft 1 in) and
males have been confirmed at lengths of up to 5 m (16 ft 5 in). The false gharial apparently has the largest skull of any extant crocodilian, undoubtedly aided by the great length of the slender snout. Out of the eight longest crocodilian skulls from existing species that could be found in museums around the world, six of these belonged to false gharials.
The longest crocodilian skull was of this species and measured 84 cm (33 in) in length, with a mandibular length of 104 cm (41 in). Most of the owners of these enormous skulls surprisingly had no measured (or even ancedotedly claimed) total measurements but based on the known skull-to-total length ratio for the species, they would measure approximately 5.5 to 6.1 m (18 ft 1 in to 20 ft 0 in) in length.
At the end of 2008, a 4-m female false gharial attacked and ate a fisherman in central Kalimantan; his remains were found in the gharial’s stomach. This was the first verified fatal human attack by a false gharial. However, by 2012, at least two more verified fatal attacks on humans by false gharial had occurred indicating perhaps an increase of human-false gharial conflict possibly correlated to the decline of habitat, habitat quality and natural prey numbers.
False gharials are mound-nesters. Females lay small clutches of 13 to 35 eggs per nest, and appear to produce the largest eggs of extant crocodilians. Sexual maturity in females appears to be attained around 2.5 to 3 m (8.2 to 9.8 ft), which is large compared to other crocodilians.
It is not known when they breed in the wild or when the nesting season is. Once the eggs are laid, and construction of the mound is completed, the female abandons her nest. Unlike most other crocodilians, the young receive no parental care and are at risk of being eaten by predators, such as mongooses, tigers, leopards, civets, and wild dogs. The young hatch after 90 days and are left to fend for themselves.
The false gharial is threatened with extinction throughout most of its range due to the drainage of its freshwater swamplands and clearance of surrounding rainforests. The species is also hunted frequently for its skin and meat, and the eggs are often harvested for human consumption.
Green Sea Turtle
Burmese Python climbing a tree
Green Sea Turle
The Golden Flying Snake
Newly hatched Green Sea Turtle
False Gharial close-up
Golden Flying Snake in flight