Quick Links
Home Page
Site Map
Monitors
Search Mampam.com
       You are here: Home > Captive Care > Should I get a Monitor Lizard?
Butaan Project camera trap archive
Main Menu
Home
About Mampam
Viper Press
Contact Us
Book Reviews
Varanus Species A-Z
Monitors
Monitor Lizard News
Little Book
Captive Care
Species List
Butaan Project
Magazine Articles
Monitors
Caspian Monitor
Wall of Shame
Wall of Praise
Library
Varanus A-Z
Projects
Butaan Project
Savannah Monitors
Bui Hippo Project
Frogs of Coorg
Polillo Project
Madagascar Bats
Western Visayas
Turkmenistan
Library
Monitor Lizards
Glossop

 

Should I get a Monitor Lizard? Print E-mail
Captive Care of Monitors

Extract from A Little Book of Monitor Lizards © D. Bennett 1995. Viper Press, UK

I don't keep monitor lizards, but lots of people ask me for advice on the subject.

If you are new to monitor keeping and want to know which is the best species to keep you will find a mryiad of advice both online and in print on the subject. Most people would advise you to get something "easy" like a savanna monitor (Varanus exanthematicus). I strongly disagree. Hundreds of thousands of savanna monitors have been caught in the wild and exported to Europe and the US in the last decade, virtually all of which are dead within a year or so. Captive breeding of this species is practically non-existent. My observations of the species in the wild lead me to suspect it is a highly specialised feeder and the fact that so many are imported and so few breed lead me to believe that this animal is not suitable for people not well experienced in monitor husbandry. Admittedly it is a very tough animal and even in the worst conditions it takes a very long time to die, but this is not the same as being "easy to keep".

My advice is to get captive bred animals. I don't have anything to do with buying or selling monitor lizards and my commercial interests in the subject go no further than selling books and securing research grants. Therefore I'm not able to give advice about where to find captive bred animals so please don't bother asking. You will find contact details of monitor breeders elsewhere on the web. I would advise you to ask around and find suppliers with a good reputation. MANY people sell animals as captive bred that have actually been taken from the wild. As for which species, virtually any, as long as they are captive bred. Buying wild-caught monitors is a very dubious thing to do. They have the right to roam in the fresh air and sunshine and get cooked in soup and eaten by snakes, they should not end up dying very slow deaths in boxes. Catching wild animals for the pet trade involves hundreds of thousands of animals each year, virtually all of which die miserable deaths. I am sure that if the problem is not corrected soon it will result in extreme legislation that outlaws the keeping of many animals. But it doesn't have to be like that. What happens depends very largely on whether the animal buying public can behave responsibly. Buying creatures such as wild caught savanna monitors is not a responsible behaviour. Buy captive bred animals only, they will be much more rewarding and you can enjoy your animals without the guilt of being a destroyer of wildlife.

Bibliography >>
 
 

 

About Mampam
Bye Bye Butaan

 butaan1.jpg

Butaan start to visit fruiting trees before they are large enough to swallow the fruits. They make repeat journeys to trees, perhaps to reinforce memory of the position of the tree. If the youngster survives it may continue to use this tree for many decades. Fruiting trees like this are a vital resource for entire populations of butaan. Learn more >


 
Help Mampam
The Butaan Project
Videos from the Butaan Project
butanvideo1.jpgA small collection of videos made by the Butaan Project. It took us three years to get the first moving images of wild butaan. Some recordings are made using camcorders tied to trees and triggered by passive infrared monitors, others are made by volunteers from camouflaged hides.
Read more...
 

 

© 2017 Mampam Conservation