Friday, April 30, 2004

Tomorrow I'll be able to go out for a few hours of birding.

I've had a few good observations in the last couple days.

Yesterday, the preventive med guys showed me a tiny snake that someone had killed and brought to them. It was pink and only about 6 inches long. I ID'd it as a thread snake (Typhlops vermicularis). These snakes are usually found underground and look for all the world like an earthworm. Under the dissecting scope I could see tiny little flat scales on its body. Apparently at one of our outlying units the've been finding several of these little guys. I'd like to find one alive.

Unfortunately all the snakes I've seen have been dead. The medics down the street killed a large ratsnake (Coluber sp.). It was gray with dark markings on its back and head.

Since we got here, some of the soldiers have been telling me about some fox-like animals that they often see at dusk near one of the ponds. Because I usually have to work in the evening I haven't had a chance to go and look for them at the right time.

Yesterday I drove up to the pond and immediately found a small Common Jackal (Canis aureus) running around. It was a little smaller than a Red Fox with a significantly smaller tail. The coat was dark brown. It spent a few minutes trotting around close to me then disappeared into the reeds.

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