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Varanus telenestes Print E-mail
Rossel Island monitor

Varanus telenestes   Sprackland 1991

Brandenberg (1983) noted that the populations of emerald monitors (Varanus prasinus) on some islands off western New Guinea did not differ markedly from those on the mainland. However the isolated population on Rossel Island at the eastern tip of the Louisiade Archipelago were considered a new species by Sprackland (1990) and named Varanus telenesetes. It has a mottled rather than unpatterned underside and the enlarged scales on the soles of the feet are light rather than dark. Only a single specimen is known which measures 21.7cm SVL, 42.5cm TL. Nothing is known of its way of life.
 
 

 

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The Butaan Project
The Butaan Project - Foraging behaviour

butaan7.jpgWe use feces to investigate diet and activity areas of butaan. In total we have examined more than 1500 samples, possibly the largest ever collected for a single population of reptiles.  Butaan and their relatives are huge specialised frugivores, much bigger than any other specialised frugivorous animal in  the Philippines. They need a constant supply of fruit but lack the wings that allow other frugivores to forage in different forest fragments. Large and immobile, the butaan depends on a very narrow range of foods.

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