Tag Archive: conservation

Eyelash Pit Viper

Eyelash Pit Viper

Another creature captured in Costa Rica, this eyelash pit viper carries venom in its hinged, hollow fangs. Eyelash vipers have many color variations including brown, red, and yellow like this one, and are named for the scales above their eyes resembling eyelashes and the heat-sensitive pits between their eyes and nostrils that allow them to sense prey. Unlike most other species of snakes, eyelash vipers have rough, not smooth, scales that protect the snake while meandering through its arboreal habitat. These snakes are also ovoviviparous; fertilized eggs develop inside the mother and hatchlings are either born live or immediately after eggs are laid. Interestingly, a single clutch of eggs may contain vipers of every color variation. Eyelash pit vipers were, quite happily, removed from CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) threatened list in 2002.

Keel-Billed Toucan

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One of the lucky keel-billed toucans we caught in Turrialba, Costa Rica as part of a study determining the toucans’ roles in seed dispersing and reforestation. The bird is definitely uncomfortable in these pictures as we were attaching a radio tag (that was eventually taken off) which allowed us to track its range and find its nest. I believe this one we named Aragorn.