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Habitat updates for our scaly friends

Hi everyone!  It’s Kelly from Herpetology! Walking around the Zoo, you may have noticed some changes going on in the Herpetology Department and have been wondering what is going on? Well, I’m here to help clear up some of that mystery! The two main projects we are working on at the moment are in Scaly Slimy Spectacular and in the indoor space for the Komodo dragon.

Specifically, Habitat #39 in Scaly Slimy Spectacular: Some of you may remember that this used to be a fully aquatic habitat opposite of the Gaboon viper habitat. However, after some thorough water retention investigation and team discussion, we decided to transition it to a dry habitat. To safely do this, we need a door put in and some type of cover for safety. So, over the next couple weeks, when you walk through the gallery area of Scaly Slimy Spectacular, you will start to see all these changes taking place.  We are still considering what species will make their new home in the space once it’s done, so check back often to see the progress!

The other major update you will see is taking place in Rinca the Komodo dragon’s indoor habitat. The Herpetology and Maintenance Teams have been working hard over the last year to really improve his indoor space, since due to his species’ temperature requirements, he spends half the year in an indoor habitat during the winter. So far, he has gotten a new lighting system and basking platform, and now he is getting his very own in-ground pool!  This project has been in the making for a while now, and we are so excited to finally be able to make it come to fruition…and it’ll be quite the birthday present! That’s right!  On August 13, Rinca will celebrate his 12th birthday in style with his very own “meat-lovers” cake and hopefully a pool party in the very near future!  Stay tuned … it’s sure to be quite the splash!

Kelly G.
Lead Keeper, Herpetology

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