Tetrapod Zoology

Archives for February, 2008

Ermentrude the liolaemine

Thank you and well done to everyone who had a bash at identifying Ermentrude. For the most part, you were correct: Ermentrude was indeed an iguanian, and within Iguania a tropidurid… or tropidurine… I mean liolaemid… or liolaemine, or liolaemin.. and, within that group, a species of the large South American taxon Liolaemus. What species?…

The mystery of Ermentrude the lizard

This is Ermentrude, or Ermie, the best lizard I ever kept. Despite his name he was a male (I think). He got used to being handled but didn’t like having his claws clipped. Strangely, he liked banana and once he ate a load of white butterfly chrysalises. Anyway… can you succeed where so many have…

The third Big Cats in Britain (BCiB) conference is almost upon us: it happens from 7th-9th March 2008 at Tropiquaria (Watchet, Somerset). This time round, I’m speaking, and most of my research time is currently being eaten up as I prepare for the meeting (I’m also speaking in the first week of March on ‘Britain’s…

Traumatic anal intercourse with a pig

It’s always interesting when individuals of two different species strike up a relationship. This might be a hunting partnership (raptor species have been reported co-operating to flush prey, as have coyotes and American badgers), an alliance where species warn each other of approaching predators (as in the case of co-operating monkeys and duikers)… or a…

Yet again I am going to have to go quiet-ish on Tet Zoo for a little while as I just cannot put the time into completing the many planned articles. Sigh. One thing approaching on the near horizon is eating up lots of my research time: the third Big Cats in Britain conference, happening in…

Axolotls on the EDGE!

I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll be saying it again: as a life-long zoology nerd, one of my greatest frustrations has always been the fact that there are so many animals that get mentioned – only ever mentioned – but never elaborated upon. I’ve always liked Axolotls Ambystoma mexicanum, and among the world’s…

Ankylosaur week, day 7: Animantarx

And so, here we are, at the end of it all. Ankylosaur week has come and gone, but oh what a week it was. As I said at the beginning, the whole aim was to save myself work and time by not producing anything new – and this worked, more or less. Did I clear…

Ankylosaur week, day 6: Silvisaurus

Another day, another ankylosaur. This time: Silvisaurus condrayi. Known only from the Albian-Cenomanian Dakota Formation of Kansas and described by Theodore H. Eaton in 1960, Silvisaurus is a surprisingly well known, though enigmatic, nodosaurid. Because Eaton provided a life restoration in his paper (albeit it not a very good one – read on. It’s shown…

Ankylosaur week, day 5: Edmontonia

Welcome to day 5 of ankylosaur week. This time, we look at Panoplosaurus‘ sister-taxon Edmontonia. Edmontonia was a large (6-7 m long) Campanian-Maastrichtian nodosaurid that lived right across North America…

Ankylosaur week, day 4: Panoplosaurus

Panoplosaurus mirus was a large nodosaurid (reaching 6 m) and a particularly close relative of the even larger Edmontonia (for a quick intro to nodosaurids see the day 2 article). One of several Canadian dinosaurs from the Campanian Dinosaur Park Formation named by Lawrence Lambe, Panoplosaurus was described in 1919 for a skeleton collected by…