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 Post subject: Rock Monitor
Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2005 6:54 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Hi can anyone please ID this reptile :?:
Wich I saw in Satara Camp While taking a walk (!!Got a huge fright!!), this is one of the two I saw during my stay there.

Are they commen in Kruger ??
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Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2005 11:05 pm 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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Hi,
Looking at head, tail and habitat, I would say Rock Monitor (also known as Tree or Savanna Monitor).
Water monitor (or Nile Monitor) will normally stay close to water. Rock monitors on the other hand can be found anywhere. I have seen rock monitors far away from water, in trees, and also in camps, especially in Shingwedzi.
Rock monitors have a more rounded head ('swollen' nose) whereas water monitors have a more flattened head.

Rock monitor
Image
Water monitor (juvenile, black/yellow)
Image

The tail of your (rock) monitor, although not clearly visible, looks more or less the same size as the body of the reptile. The tail of the water monitor is much longer than the body.

Rock monitors eat mostly large insects and millipedes but will also take other reptiles (lizards and even small tortoises). Be careful !!! They can bite really hard.

Hope you do agree.


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Unread postPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2005 11:51 pm 
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Arie is correct! It is the Rock Monitor :D

They are beautiful beasts! Lots of personality, and can get quite tame!

They have an incredible ability to climb trees! They wil scamper up a tree at the first sign of danger. Long nails!!!

Their tails is also quite interesting! It is long and muscular, and they use it as a weapon to hit an would be atacker. They actually carry it in the air while walking, and do not drag it behind.

Once saw a Rock Monitor which had been caught by a Martial Eagle! He lost the fight!
:cry:

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Unread postPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2005 7:50 am 
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My fairly old books call them leguaan - when did the name change? Monitor fits in with similar naming elsewhere in the world.

Can get very large. Quite amusing gait if you see one running down a road!

Richard


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Unread postPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2005 8:08 pm 
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Rock monitor

There was no name change:

In South Africa, monitors are often referred to as "leguaans" which is probably a corruption of the word "Iguana" - a family of spine-crested, vegetarian lizards to which they are not closely related. Similarly, the Australians sometimes refer to monitors as "goannas". Interestingly, the name "monitor" may also be a case of mistaken identity: common in Egypt, they became known by the general Arabic term for lizards, ouaran. Pronounced waran, this was apparently confused by German naturalists for warnen, which was interpreted as "warning lizards". This was then Latinized to Varanus (the genus). Monitor came from this and has given rise to some authors attempting to explain the name by the lizard's alleged habit of keeping a look out, or giving warning of the presence of crocodiles! (Which is a myth of course)


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2005 1:38 am 
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If the word 'leguaans' is Afrikaans (although I believe that 'likkewaan' is a more common word in Afrikaans) it probably comes from the Dutch word 'leguaan'. In Dutch the name is correctly used for the species of the order Iguania. The Dutch name for monitors is 'varaan', from the name of the genus Varanus, as Pilane just explained.


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 9:18 am 
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There is one that roams around the camping area at Shingwedzi. One of their favourite meals is bird eggs and that is why if you see one in the open it will often be mobbed by birds.


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2005 9:05 pm 
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there was one, a rock monitor ,draped over the pole fence outside the Lower Sabie main office when I was there last. It's amazing how everyone, including myself, didnt notice it. An elderly lady pointed it out to me :wink:


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2006 4:52 pm 
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Be careful behind the first ablution block to your right at Skukuza :twisted: These guys love sunning themselves there! :lol:


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 28, 2006 10:37 pm 
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Lovely pic's Madach :)
I saw about 4 of them during our recent stay at Shingwedzi. There was an old one with only half it's tail, weird looking because the others had very long muscular tails as long as their bodies. He climbed up a tree and into a hollow, nice and comfortably with his head a front claws hanging out :) . In about 3 hour the rain started to pour and thunderstorm was starting. It rained all night long...

I wonder if this Rock Monitor sensed the rains and decided to get up to higher ground (?) :hmz:


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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2006 2:26 pm 
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I have never seen one of these guys....
How long do they get?


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 Post subject: Monitor Lizard
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2006 7:45 am 
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Hi again
On our recent trip to Lower Sabie, we had "monty" (as we named him), literally come up within 20cm of my camera as we were setting up camp. They are usually so suspect of everything and run away at the slightest movement, that is why we were so taken back with this guy\gal. As this ever happened to anyone else? :P
Image
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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2006 10:56 am 
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Wow, thats pretty strange :)
Nice pics!!!

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 Post subject: Re: Monitor Lizard
Unread postPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2006 11:01 am 
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marioE wrote:
Hi again
On our recent trip to Lower Sabie, we had "monty" (as we named him), literally come up within 20cm of my camera as we were setting up camp. They are usually so suspect of everything and run away at the slightest movement, that is why we were so taken back with this guy\gal. As this ever happened to anyone else? :P


My guess is that this reptile is obviously used to humans, being a camp dweller himself and most probably have been fed previously by law-breaking visitors. Thus his tame reaction towards you guys.

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 Post subject:
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 22, 2006 1:10 pm 
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I agree with WTM, as we also have them coming up from the Croc River at our timeshare on the border of Kruger.
People put food out for the birds and they come and help themselves as well.

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