Fraser Island Amphibians and Reptiles

Fraser Island in the southern coast of Queensland, Australia is one of the best tourist locations in the whole of Australia. The 120 kilometers long and approximately 24 kilometers wide island is known for its abundant flora and fauna of different species. Known for a fact as Queensland’s largest island and Australia’s sixth, it is also an island known for its magnificence. Fraser has rainforests, eucalyptus woodlands, swamps and sand dunes which are homes for countless animals and bird species. The island is practically made up of sand but plant life is thriving due to the mycorrhizal fungi in the sand that gives nutrients to the plants. What’s more amazing about the Fraser Island is its abundance in wildlife. The wildlife is considered very unique. Fraser Island is separated from mainland Australia and therefore the gene pool of animals is confined within the area for centuries. The animals have no contact with the mainland breed so they are of the purest. Aside from the popular dingoes that live in the island that’s considered the purest of all species that’s left in the country, the island is also very popular for being the home for countless reptiles and amphibians. Fraser Island is home to 79 species of reptiles and 19 kinds of snakes. Lizards, freshwater and sea snakes and various freshwater and salt water turtles live in swamps, lakes and along the ocean shores. Reptiles in the include island tortoises, frilled lizards, geckos, skinks, sand goannas, snakes and an extremely large variety of frogs. Fraser Island Snakes Among the 19 species of snakes that inhabit the island 6 of them are considered very dangerous and ultimately deadly. But compared to China, Africa and other countries with venomous snakes, Fraser Island snakes have caused very little deaths. This is due to the sands that cover the area. Sands carries vibrations on the ground very easily so these deadly snakes hear human approaching even before they come very near. Fraser island snakes are considered shy as they hide and they do not attack. They fear humans more than humans fear them so these snakes are very less dangerous than what they are supposed to be and not usually seen roaming around. One of the most poisonous snakes in Fraser Island is the Death Adder. Death Adder is a short snakes that grows up to only about 50 centimeters. It has a thick body and triangular head. Unlike other snakes with somewhat pointed tails, this snake’s tail looks like it’s just been cut off. They are usually found in the Eucalyptus forest and they do not retreat from the sound of humans. This leads to a rather unusual fate for these poisonous snakes as they are usually stepped upon and they are not ready biters. They are usually gray colored or reddish brown. Another dangerous snake is the Coastal Taipan. These snakes live among the moorlands, wetlands and rainforests. They hunt during the day and can grow up to 3 meters long. These snakes are colored dark brown to a lighter creamy color. They usually flight when humans approach but can

Fraser Island Discovery: Fraser Island Tours - 186 Gympie Terrace, Noosaville QLD 4566

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(07) 5449 0393, info@thediscoverygroup.com.au

become aggressive when it feels cornered so it is advised to leave the snake alone when it happens to be around. The Mulga Snake is also one of the deadly snakes in the Fraser Island. It is actually found all over Australia except for Victoria. This dark and speckled snake grows up to 1.5 meters to 3 meters in length. When bitten by this snakes, it would be much like as being hit by a sledge-hammer. Other kinds of snakes are Sylvia’s blind snakes, proximus blind snakes, eastern small blotched pythons, carpet pythons, some species of rear fanged snakes, and several front fanged snakes such as white-crowned snakes, dwarf-crowned snakes, golden-crowned snakes, eastern brown snakes and the eastern bandy. There are still other fanged snakes and a lot of sea snakes that consider the Island as their home. Turtles Fraser Island is known to inhabit freshwater and sea water turtles. Lakes and beaches are home to different turtles that can be usually seen around the area. Eastern Long-Necked turtle live in the freshwater lakes and usually grows up to 25 centimeters in length and have reddish-brown tinge on their shells. They have webbed claws that are strong enough to carry them on sand and for swimming and they have strong jaws that can tear large pieces of flesh. When they are nervous, these turtles emit a strong pungent smell as their defense mechanism. They love to spend most of their time on the lakes while standing on the sand in the water. Other freshwater turtles are the broad-shelled river turtles, and the Fraser Island short-necked turtles. Leatherback turtles can also be spotted in the island and some sea turtles like the green sea turtles, hawksbill turtles, and loggerhead turtles. Other Reptiles and Amphibians The island is home to quite a number of frog species. They continue to evolve to adapt to the acidic waters of freshwater lakes and swamps. These frogs are called acid frogs. Acid frogs are among the 23 species of amphibians present in the island. Acid frogs include Cooloola tree frog and the wallum rocket frog. The cane toads are now considered pests that can be found throughout the island. The island also has a recently discovered skink. The skink is called the Fraser Island san skink. Saltwater crocodiles are also occasional visitors of the island. Although they don’t really inhabit the place, they can be seen around the island during summer. They are really from North Queensland that is several hundreds of kilometers from Fraser Island. But when the temperature gets warmer, they move to the Island and also disappear during cold months. They grow at about 4 meters in length. Other reptiles and amphibians that dwell within the island are geckoes like the wood geckoes, dubious dtella, and southern spotted geckoes; dragons such as the nobbi, frilled lizards, bearded dragon, eastern water dragon; goannas like sand monitors and lace monitors; Burton’s legless lizards and various skinks.

Fraser Island Discovery: Fraser Island Tours - 186 Gympie Terrace, Noosaville QLD 4566

T

(07) 5449 0393, info@thediscoverygroup.com.au

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