Do you get a thrill from playing Pokemon Go and finding the Pokemon all around you? Is this the look on your face when you finally get that Zapdos or Aerodactyl?
You might just have what it takes to be a Reptile Guru yourself. Reptile keepers have been doing this for centuries – it’s called Herping (because the study of reptiles is called Herpetology, like Entomology is the study of insects…though I’m not sure that looking for bugs is called Enting). Some of the most thrilling adventures I’ve ever had were wandering jungles to find rare reptiles. On my first big adventure when I was 18, this frilled dragon ran across the road when we were between Uluru and Darwin, Australia. Our bus driver knew I was a reptile enthusiast so he screeched the bus to a halt and yelled on the intercom: “BROCK, GO CATCH THAT FRILLIE!” I ran barefoot out of the bus on the scalding hot pavement, and the frillie ran! I chased him into a thicket of eucalyptus trees where I lost sight of him….having given up, I looked up at eye level and he was hanging onto a branch right in front of me at eye level. I snatched him (carefully) and proceeded to educate everyone on the bus about Chlamydosuarus kingii “The King’s Cloaked Dragon.” This was like catching a Charizard!
Recently I was in Maui celebrating my birthday, and found this little Jackson’s chameleon chillin’ on a coffee plant outside the Nahiku Market coffee shop on the road to Hana. This was like finding an invisible Kecleon.
In Sydney, Australia, this rare leaf gecko (Phyllurus platurus) lived in the garage of the home we were staying in. It was like finding a rare little Venusaur hiding in some leaves.
In Cambodia, I saved this skink from being eaten by the Hostel cat! He was a sad little Charmander.
In Borneo, this big river croc was waiting by the river at our bungalow….kinda like a Gyarados.
The biggest thrill isn’t catching reptiles, it’s hatching them! Pokemon grow and evolve, but reptiles grow and reproduce. It’s a fascinating process and eases pressures on wild populations.
YES, my name is Brock, and I’m a
Pokemon Reptile Master.
And so is my girlfriend! Here’s an East Pacific Tree Frog and Western Redback Salamander she caught last summer!
What are some reptiles you’ve caught and the stories behind them?