14 April 2000
EASTER is upon us, marking that time of year roughly associated (at least in British minds) with lighter evenings, bank holidays, variable weather and lambs being born in the fields. Of course there is more to Easter than that (watch out for an article in the Weightier Matters section), but whether you celebrate the Christian festival or simply observe it as a milestone in the year, it does signify regeneration, rebirth or change in one way or another.
Apart from the spiritual aspects of this time of year we have been thinking about the reproductive association in connection with reptiles and amphibians. By now most if not all herps in the Northern hemisphere will have awoken and probably mated in their unconscious but eternal strategy to keep their species viable. Many of us who keep herps as a hobby or even as an occupation will also be hoping for, and working towards, the birth of captive young, both as as a way of encouraging natural behaviour in our animals and as a means to reducing dependency upon wild-caught imports.
I have to apologise at this point for not having updated the site as frequently as I would have liked, nor for having included material on the animal-welfare-rights-liberation issues that I mentioned last month. Part of this has been due to certain pressures related thereto: also there is a lot of reading up to do. Trying to work your way through tomes on philosophical and ethical questions is probably as hard as, if not harder than, grasping biology and zoology, but it needs to be done if we are to have more than a knee-jerk reaction either way to these serious questions. However, we will still be monitoring the actions and propaganda of that vocal and vociferous minority who wish to destroy our relationships with our animals.
I am also aware that work on the geckos, monitors and lacertids has been delayed yet again. We are still proceeding with this, and in addition hope to have a brief guide to chamaeleons on site soon. This will be as much a preventative guide as anything, to warn people off the most difficult or threatened species and to steer them towards those chamaeleons which have a better chance of survival in captivity. However, please remember that there is no such thing as an "easy" chamaeleon! As always we will also be adding to our index of herpetological articles. All of this should take us into May.
Thanks again to everyone who has sent us E-mails recently. If for any reason I haven't replied to you, please let us know and I will try to do so again.
May 2000 (II)
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