Expanding Behind the Scenes


Remember when we said we were finally demolishing the “Gauntlet” to make room for a brand new breeding room… that day might not be here quite yet, but we are getting closer. Just look at the expansion we have planned!

 


If you think that’s beginning to look impressive just check out the numbers. In the new breeding wing will be a 1000 sq ft facility housing 147 full size breeding cages plus 3 huge new incubators!


Not only will these new enclosures be the best of the best for our animals, custom designed by Jay Brewer from his over 30 years’ experience in breeding and keeping large pythons. They are also going to be a very exciting one-of-a-kind view experience for all guests to The Reptile Zoo. As they have designed it guests will be able to look into the behind the scenes action and even be a part of the egg hatching experience.

It may look like we are already done, but we have plenty left to do! Just check out all the work it took to get this far!





It takes a dedicated and passionate team and to make these dreams come true, but luckily we have that team! Everyone has been pitching in to help wherever needed, even late into the night.

As you can tell founder Jay Brewer and breeding manager Tim O’Reilly are more than a little excited about the big plans they have in-store for you.

Check back in the next couple months to see our progress and hopefully we will have the breeding room of our dreams completed and on display by the next time you visit The Reptile Zoo!

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Monsters at The Reptile Zoo!

 Our Beaded Lizards & Gila Monster, newly added exhibit in our REPTILE ZOO!  Are the only two venomous lizard species in the world.  Capable of inflicting a very painful bite!  I can personally vouch for that fact.  They both have  Bull dog like bites, they grab on & it is nearly impossible to get them to release the extreme presure their jaws  exert.

 The Beaded lizard & Gila Monster are combined into the lizard family known by the scientific name Helodermatid.  The scientific name of the Beaded lizard is Heloderma horridum sp. The Gila Monster is known as Heloderma suspectum sp.  The sp. means that each species has at least 2 or more subspecies.

    These lizards are very unusual because of their skin texture.  Both have beadlike looking scales, called osteoderms (bony skin).  These bony scales make these lizards nearly indestructible.  Along with their formidable bite, they are not an animal to trifle with, with out years of experience, as is true with all venomous reptiles.  Luckily both lizards are completely PROTECTED in every state and country they are native to.

    They both have good daytime vision and very keen hearing.  These lizards can also sense an oncoming intruder by detecting minute vibrations in the ground.  These keen senses are a must for survival, considering these animals are slow travelers and incapable of any fast sprints.  Slow & awkward they have another defense, and that is they spend about 90% of their life underground.  Coming out in the spring to forage for food and breed.

    They feed almost exclusively on the contents of other animals nests and underground borrows, such as bird eggs & offspring, rodents, snake & lizard eggs, etc.  Even though they are so clumsy and slow, both are excellent climbers.

    The heloderms range I’ll break down seperately.  Beaded lizards range from southern Sonora Mexico south along the west coast of mainland Mexico into eastern Guatamala in Central America.  On the other hand Gia Monsters are native mostly to southern Arizona, s.w. New Mexico, extreme s.e. California, southern Nevada, and s.w. Utah in the U.S. southward into southern Sonora, Mexico.  So far they are absent from Baja, Mexico and the small islands of the Sea of Cortez.

     Reproduction in Gila Monsters takes place in the spring, with egg clutches numbering 2 to 12, after a gestation period of 25 days.  In captivity Beaded Lizards lay 2 to 22 egg clutches, averages of 6 to 10 eggs are more common.

     My foremost project here at the REPTILE ZOO is reproducing the Beaded Lizards.  So come on in and see how we’re progressing with our breeding colony of 5 specimens! 

      Craig Tauchman    May 6,2012

 

 

 

 

 

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Trading Up at Gecko Lofts

 

Here at The Reptile Zoo it's all about upgrade, upgrade, upgrade and the same is true for our animals! After spending 6 months at the "Crestie Condos" in Prehistoric Pets as young couples the crested geckos finally decided they wanted to start a family and really settle down. Luckily their friends the Leachies knew just the spot, "Gecko Lofts" at The Reptile Zoo.

 

 

The crested gecko families knew they couldn't go wrong with the suggestion from the Leachies. Bubbles and Squishy have been at the Gecko Lofts for over year now and enjoying the extra space along with their two cute new additions to the family. So with little hesitation they packed up their bags, gathered their furniture and moved from the Crestie Condos at Prehistoric Pets to the Gecko Lofts at The Reptile Zoo. It didn't take long for everyone to get comfortable and enjoy the sights and sounds of their new digs.

 

 

 

They've even started to blend in to their new environment. Can you count how many crested geckos are enjoying their new cage in the picture below?

 

 

Here's a close up shot of one of the crestie bellies. Check out their specially designed fingers for sticking on just about anything, including glass!

 

 

Next time you're at The Reptile Zoo be sure to check out Gecko Lofts and it's oh so cool residents!

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Guest Blogging from Across the Pond

 



Hey Everyone,

I just wanted to give you all a heads up that I will be staying out at The Reptile Room for a week (be available there the 3rd-7th). For those who don't know, I am the sales manager from Prehistoric Pets in California- and we have loads of super high end animals in stock over there right now- some of which can ONLY be seen in person there, or at our shop in Cali.

I am really hoping that many of you will stop by- The Reptile Room has constructed a new VIP room for the high end animals, and it will be open to the public for the whole time I am there. I'm really hoping to have some great discussions regarding the most cutting edge genetics, ideas for new breeding projects, and whatever else you would like to pick my brain about.


It should be a great environment, a lot closer to many of you than any European shows, and I will be willing to sell anything you are interested in at show pricing. The most important thing to me is really just to make some good conversation with great people, and give you a more personal idea of who you would be dealing with if you ever were to get anything sent out there from us.


Many key breeders in the UK are working with genetics they have gotten from us on direct imports over the years, but never before has the opportunity been given for anyone at any level of the game to get directly involved with some of the front runners of the Retic game, as they now are able to through our partnership with The Reptile Room (I hope that doesn't sound too prideful- but I guess being an American I can't always help it, and you certainly expect it anyhow- haha).

I really hope to see you all there! -Garrett Hartle, Prehistoric Pets

 

 

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It's not Wednesday it's TIM'S DAY! Duh.

**Stay Tuned, The Day is Young!**

It’s an exciting week here at Prehistoric Pets/ The Reptile Zoo and we just can’t hold it in anymore!  First, we welcomed the arrival of our FIRST captive bred Leachianus Gecko in The Reptile Zoo!  Born from our two adult Leachies, Bubbles and Squishy, our little newborn has been quite the talk of the shop.  No bigger than a pinky finger, this lil’ leachie has the honor of sharing birthdays with our dear friend and colleague, Tim O, giving him his new name, Little Timmy!

Little Timmy's first photos <3

To send this exciting week into OVERDRIVE, might we inform you its TIM O’REILLY’S BIRTHDAY?!?  There’s not enough space in the cybernet world to begin to blog or post all the Thanks and kudos earned and deserved by our dear friend.  Most of you know Tim; others have only seen him transporting giant Retics from room to room or assisting Jay in a clutch pull video.   Either way, we are dedicating all our posts and blogs to this important asset of the Prehistoric Pets team.  Although deserving of much more, hopefully we can shed some light on the “Man in the Back”.

Starting with Prehistoric Pets in 2002, Tim was hired onboard and placed straight into breeding responsibilities.  Unlike most associates who went thru counter and register experience to floor then to office duties, Tim was immediately placed right where he worked best.  Even though he was given breeding duties, Tim still assisted the counter, sales floor, birthday parties, office duties and MORE.  Working side by side at the time with our main breeder Todd Dyer, Tim reinvented breeding Retics, Ball Pythons and Burmese Pythons.  Heck, back then that’s what it was all about.  But not for long; later Tim would assist in the evolution of Retic breeding, changing the focus from Burms and Balls to Reticulated Reticulated Reticulated. Now, Tim leads our Reticulated Python breeding as Breeding Manager.

Tim isn’t just appreciated and respected for his breeding knowledge, but for his incredible work ethic.  Working an average of 6 days since he STARTED and hardly letting illness keep him away from work, Tim has been a perfect example of a model associate and colleague.   Maybe you’ve seen Tim work our booth at The OC Fair?  He took over fair responsibilities for 3 summers until Juliette was able to run the crew and Tim could return to wrangling some of the most beautiful, big and even rare breeds of snake.  There have even been times when Tim has unselfishly given his time and worked 14 days straight to help out completion of random projects!  He really gives a new meaning to the phrase "Jack of all Trades".  =P

Despite what you may think, when Tim isn’t pulling clutches, measuring Retics, shedding and cleaning our animals, he actually enjoys spending his leisure time fishing!  Just today Tim stopped in, pulled his Birthday clutch and headed out to sea for some Lobster fishin!  All of us here at Prehistoric Pets wish Tim the happiest of Birthdays!  Drop your trap, kick up your feet and enjoy the crisp ocean breeze on YOUR more than deserved special day. 

Tim and Jay pull Tim's Birthday Clutch!

 

Happy Birthday Tim!

^O^..........Priscilla

 


Video Link

 

.............We're not done with you yet!  While Tim was out Lobster fishing and Jay took over his duties, guess what we found?!  The Reptile Zoo's FIRST ever Jaguar Het Albino X Irian Jaya!  This all being made possible with the help of Tim himself and Michael Jim, and of course Jay pokinghis nose in.  We are really looking forward to see what the Carpet Het Jaguar Albino's come out like.  Tell us what you think...

Looks like a promising clutch! 

Not to mention we're seeing some of the coolest eggs and hatchlings come around!

Ciao!

^O^.........Priscilla

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Breed my pretties, BREED!

So I posed a question to all of you Herpers this morning, asking what kinds of questions YOU had about reptiles and such.  After scanning thru the many responses I noticed a lot of you asked several questions in regards to breeding.  So I decided to base today’s blog around lizard breeding since snake breeding has SO many points and aspects to cover, it’s much easier to leave that to individual training.  Luckily, lizards are in such popular demand that this blog entry should help lots of you guys learn to breed and start your own lizard community at home. =)

 

First of all, you should know that if the lizards are comfortable enough in their surroundings to breed, it shows that the artificial environment provided is adequate. But in order for this to happen, you have to take care of as many variables as possible.  So step one, the artificial environment needs to be large enough, have separate hides for each lizard and offer the same humidity as the natural habitat of your lizard, so make sure you study up on the natural environment of your pet and simplify the caging to  something they are accustomed to.  Secondly, in the wild, male lizards naturally stake out their home territory and defend it from other males. When the home territory is as small as a 30-gallon terrarium, having just one male per cage becomes even more vital.  However, most lizards do well when kept in trios of one male and two females.  Pssh, of course it works smoothly with multiple females than males! =P 

Day and Night cycles should equate with the breeding cycle in the lizard's area of origin.  If your pet is wild, they require at least one year of adjustment to a change in light cycles and the confines of captivity.  So what happens if you have a pair of lizards, you've done everything right – but so far there's STILL no breeding?  There are a few things you can do, first try separating the lizards. Many breeders prefer to keep the sexes separate until breeding is desired. Then the lizards are placed together for a week or so or until breeding takes place then separated again.  This helps keep the stress levels to a minimum and encourage the desire to breed.  Another helpful trick is to add a second male to the cage in hopes the males will create breeding displays between themselves, which tends to arouse breeding interest in the female.  Us gals are always impressed by showy displays of affection and desire =P.  You may need to also provide a period of dormancy/hibernation for lizards that hibernate, if you're unsure of what your lizards require in dormancy length, begin with three weeks to avoid putting too much stress on them.  At the end of the dormancy cycle, restore lighting and temperature levels and offer food and after the lizards have regained their activity levels, put the lizards together. 

Once your lizards have bred, for the egg-laying species, provide an egg deposition site.  For live-bearing lizard, provide a secluded area where the female can give birth to her young without fear of attack by another lizard.  Females may become very aggressive toward other lizards in the cage during and after child birth. Make sure you have a suitable supply of tiny insects (i.e. flightless fruit flies, cricket hatchlings) accessible when the young are born or surface from their eggs.

Now you all should be expert lizard breeders =P!  When you adapt all these requirements in your pet’s enclosure, you should have great luck and success with the finalized breeding.  For any more questions, feel free to call us here at the shop, we will be happy to help you!

Ciao

^O^……………Priscilla

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REPTILES Magazine at The Reptile Zoo

 

A couple months ago we got the call from REPTILES magazine offering us the opportunity to partner on a upcoming project, of course we responded with YES! REPTILES magazine and ReptileChannel.com are industry leaders as a high quality resource for all info reptile related. We were excited to learn Reptiles was looking to launch a video care series for first time reptile owners and wanted Jay, founder of Prehistoric Inc. to share his knowledge on the some of the most common starter pets. This seemed like the perfect fit; here at Prehistoric one of our main goals of our organization is to improve reptile awareness and proper care through responsible reptile ownership.

 

 

With some discussion on what animals to start the series Jay and REPTILES/ReptilesChannel.com editor Russ Case decided on the Bearded Dragon, Sulcatta Tortoise, Blue Tongue Skink, Frilled Dragon, as well as Jay’s specialties the Reticulated Python and Asian Water Monitor. The plan was to provide the basic details for each of these animals covering questions like: Where in the wild does the species originally come from? How big does it get? How long does it typically live in captivity? What kind of substrate is good to use? and What does it eat? Along with these facts we also used the opportunity of film to show samples of the animals in a yearling and adult size, as well as suggested products.

 

 

After all the planning we were finally ready to film. Last Monday editor Russ Case, web editor John Virata and the filming crew Shawn and Paul arrived at The Reptile Zoo ready to for a day filled with reptiles, cameras, and loads of great information on reptile care. Guests to The Reptile Zoo had the opportunity to act as the live audience watching the interaction and personalities of Jay and Russ develop through the informal interview format of the videos. Set behind Gator Island, the newest addition to The Reptile Zoo, the surroundings proved an easy distraction during filming with Prehistoric’s signature Sulfur Water Monitor breeding project in action and Frank the Asian Water Monitor currently featured on Disney Channel’s JESSIE walking in and out of the shots.

 

 

Just when the crew thought filming was done for the day, Reticulated Python breeding specialist, Tim O’Reilly invited the REPTILES team to watch the unveiling of the newest clutch of eggs. The offer was too good to refuse so the team moved the set into the incubator room where every snake produced by Prehistoric Pets is incubated and assisted in hatching and almost every one of these hatchings is filmed for viewers around the world to enjoy on our popular YouTube channel, PrehistoricPetsTV.

 


Video Link

 

 

At the end of the day Jay had to head out to start on his next project, but the REPTILES crew stuck around just a bit longer to capture some b-roll footage of the animals on a white backdrop to insert into the completed videos.

 

 

It was a great day at The Reptile Zoo with the REPTILES crew and we are anxious to see the final product which is set to launch on ReptileChannel.com and our YouTube channel in the coming months.

 

 

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Herper Question of the Week


Today is allllll about the small, but MIGHTY, Super Dwarf Reticulated Python!

We get MANY questions...but mostly about their size. Interest is raised because they are basically a mini-me Retic!




First imported in 1999, these little guys are naturally greenish-gray, with orange or copper colored eyes. They are becoming increasingly popular as pets because of their manageable size, but still abundantly different beautiful patterns.






Super Dwarf Retics can reach a length of 8 feet. At this length they are usually a weight of about 20 lbs, because they don't get very thick. There is also a "step" in between Super Dwarf Retic and Normal Retic, that is just known as a Dwarf Retic. They grow to around 12-14 feet.

Our breeding team here at Prehistoric Pets is always working to create different morphs, and to supply the growing demand for these beautiful creatures. They are definitely a GREAT choice if you are looking for something exotic that won't grow HUGE.

Just as an interesting factoid...the longest reticulated python ever found was in 1912 on an Indonesian island....33 feet long and 270 lbs! Check this out!!


ReptileDiscovery.com reports that the largest known in the U.S. is a Retic named "Fluffy"....24 feet, 310 lbs, and 13 years old. Hmmmmmm....




Well, that means YOU folks really know the largest! Our Twinkie is not only a beautiful AMEL retic, but she's 22 feet, 350 lbs...and only 8 years old! She's STILL growing, people!



Just beautiful...and she's SO strong...ALL muscle!


Ok, so this was a little bit about big retics...but mainly about the mighty Super Dwarf! Check out www.prehistoricpets.com to see our selection and find out more about your future pet!




<3.......................Thalia
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Hog Wild

 

Love is in the air here at Prehistoric Pets....for the animals anyway.     :-P

Today we discovered our Hognose Snake couple getting very cozy in their home.  Hmmmmmm...

Can't you just feel the love??  Hopefully there will be some little ones on the way VERY soon!!!

How exciting......so WHAT is a Hognose Snake you may ask??

Well, they are a colubrid snake, native to the U.S. and northern Mexico, with a characteristic upturned snout.  This snout serves its purpose as a very handy tool in digging and burrowing through sandy soil.  They are HIGHLY variable in color and pattern, sometimes blotched, sometimes solid...and range in color from red, green, orange, brown, and black.  So how do you tell???  The nose doesn't lie my friends...

When threatened, they actually raise off the ground and hiss, mimicking a cobra.  Sounds like a cool little dude.  The largest species of Hognose Snake can reach almost 6 feet...but most stay relatively small (around 2 feet).  They are rear-fanged, but not techinically venomous.  The saliva is toxic to prey but not dangerous to humans, and they NEVER bite.  How can they be sure?  Experiments have proved that you must smell like their prey to even get a feigned strike.  Nice.

 

So, maybe soon we will have some tiny hognoses running around...but until then come check out the loving couple here at The Reptile Zoo.  See you soon herpers!

 

<3..........................Thalia

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Westward Expansion!

 

Howdy!   We are movin out WEST ya'll!!

No, not into the ocean....or to China....but west of our building.  We just bought the space next door!

 

Many of you got the special experience of enjoying a FREE presentation in this very room during our Spooky Masquerade last month.  It was packed full and some very exotic creatures were shown...some that don't even go out to regular parties like alligators, gila monsters, & rattlesnakes!

 

So we are steadily making changes to that wing, and hopefully when we finish there will be a new area of the zoo!  Also, we are hoping to have a brand-new breeding area.  Its still up-in-the-air, but we are thinking a window too, for public view of clutches being pulled!!

What do YOU think we should add???  (tell us on Facebook!)

 

If you have been in and checked everything out, you are probably familiar with the three large cages in the pet shop area.  There are usually different things in them from time to time, but right now we have a Rhino Iguana, and a few retics.  They will soon find new homes and we will tear those cages out (maybe by Christmas!) to make room for even more retail!  Just another way we are moving towards being your go-to shop for everything reptile!!

See?  we hardly have enough room up front for our GROWING retail supply!  But don't worry, these animals will get NEW cages, maybe in our new wing!!  So excited....aren't you?

Keep checking back for more info...there's always something new happening here at Prehistoric Pets!

 

<3...........................Thalia

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