Observation of the Week, 1/19/2016

This Lorestan Newt seen by apbbani in the Khuzestan Province of Iran is our Observation of the Week.

Parham Beyhagi has loved animals since he was a child. He owned an aquarium at the age of ten and soon began to build his own terrariums for reptiles and amphibians. This fascination led him to focus on herpetology after university and he now studies reptiles and amphibians and is an advocate for their preservation.

The rare Lorestan Newt (Neurergus kaiseri) has fascinated Parham since he was a child, and from early on he “wanted to know about them and see them in the natural places where they live.” Habitat loss and illegal collection for the pet trade are two threats to the Lorestan Newt, and Parham says “this observation is very important and shows us that we must keep conserving this special species in Iran if we want to see them later in the wild in their natural habitat.” Parham and other colleagues are actively working on a conservation project for this newt.

In addition to research, Parham teaches about herps all around Iran, especially to children and ecotour leaders. He “finds species and talks to local people about the species that live in their places...I tell them about the decreasing of their populations...and want them to pay attention to the ecological effects of their works and help these animals.”

He and his colleagues have an Amphibians of Iran website and also a project on iNaturalist to educate the world about the herpetofauna of the country. “I want to share some of my information to other people who are interested in amphibians and reptiles of Iran and use information that other people share,” says Parham. He hopes that with more exposure on iNaturalist and other sites, interest and support for conserving Iran’s reptiles and amphibians will grow.

by Tony Iwane

- One of the most amazing reptiles in Iran is the Spider-tailed Horned Viper (Pseudocerastes urarachnoides). Here’s a video of its tail in action.

Publicado el viernes, 22 de enero de 2016 a las 12:32 AM por tiwane tiwane


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