Elms Environmental Education Center

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Critters of the Elms

Garden Hose or Rat Snake?

The black rat snake is a nonvenomous snake.

This snake was almost overlooked: hiding in plain sight.

They are excellent climbers.

Photos -Hester Burch

Observed by visiting students April 2012.

Common Snapping Turtle

Snapping turtles can not hide inside their shells like some other smaller turtles. Instead they will bite if they feel like they have to defend themselves.

This common snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina) was spotted crossing the lawn at Elms April 2012. It was not interested in bothering anyone.

Leopard Gecko: Eublepharis macularius

photos Hester Burch

Leopard geckos are indigenous to Pakistan and India. They are nocturnal. In the wild it would live in semiarid or arid environments (dry). They can live 15 to 20 years. Burt is his name. He is about 13 years old (in 2012). He was a former classroom pet at Hollywood Elementary School and has lived at the Elms since about 2006. If its tail was to break off (autotomize), it would grow a new one. Amazing!

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The Elms Environmental Education Center is the home of Environmental Education for St. Mary's County Public Schools.

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