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AZ Press: Gila monster protected reptile

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Posted by: W von Papinešu at Tue Aug 29 16:19:13 2006  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by W von Papinešu ]  
   

YUMA SUN (Arizona) 26 August 06 Gila monsters state's first protected reptile (James Gilbert)
Gila monsters were Arizona's first protected reptile, gaining that status in 1952, according to Gary Hovatter, Yuma's Arizona Game and Fish Department program manager.
"It was granted that protection based on the research of the time because it was thought the population was in decline," Hovatter said. "With more recent research, we have come to determine that within their habitat, they are not particularly rare. In fact, they are pretty common."
Hovatter went on to say the focus of the protection status on Gila Monster has since shifted from what was once thought to be their declining number to the reptile being a vulnerable creature.
"The real issue now is they aren't very fast and they don't move very far, which makes them vulnerable to captures that would lend to the species' decline." Hovatter said.
The problem in studying Gila monsters, Hovatter said, was that the reptiles spend 98 percent of their lives underground.
Gila monsters state's first protected reptile


   

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>> Next Message:  RE: AZ Press: Gila monster protected rep - TimCole, Wed Aug 30 22:40:13 2006