Author Brian A. Hopkins, Reptiles and Amphibians


My son recently moved back in with us while he's between jobs. As might be expected, my children have a healthy fascination and love for critters, but my son seems to have grown up particularly fond of reptiles and amphibians. So, it wasn't just him moving back in with us; in addition to his girlfriend and new baby Phoenix (yes, I am now a grandfather), he brought along quite a menagerie of scaly and slimy critters.

I've been shooting some photos (with my new Nikon D60). Realizing I hadn't added any critter photos to my website in years (too busy filling cyberspace with photos and stories about my motorcycle adventures), I thought I'd share:


Tree Python. He likes mice. With the influx of house guests that slither in the night (in addition to this lovely tree python, my son has three ball pythons), I discovered something about myself. I always thought it would be cool to have snakes as pets, but the wife always said no. Watching this guy eat mice and the larger pythons eat rats, I was surprised to be a bit creeped out by it. Poor mice and rats don't know what a snake is. They've only ever known a nice cage and the warmth and companionship of their fellow rodents. Drop them in with a snake and they're like, "Hey, you're an interesting looking chap. Got any cheese?" Then, BAM! Poor rodent is in a world of hurt. Bothered me more than a little. I still love snakes, but I don't think I'll be keeping any as pets. I'm going to spare my readers the pics of the snakes crushing the life out of the rodents and swallowing them whole -- even though I took quite a few -- because I imagine a lot of you would be as creeped out by it as I am. My son says you get used to it, but I don't know...

Leopard Geckos. These guys are pretty cool. They love crickets. It really doesn't bother me to see crickets meet their maker. LOL.


This cricket had a strategy ... it didn't work.




All the critters have really nice (and expensive) habitats designed for their particular lifestyle.

Crested Gecko. This guy has the coolest eyelashes.


In addition to crickets, he likes baby food.



Lip-smacking good.


My son has a 100% organic terrarium with all manner of frogs and fish, smaller geckos, salamanders, and I don't know what all else (I see something different every time I sit and study it) prowling around in its multi-level environment. There are probably a dozen different frogs. Here's one.


Here's a cool little fresh-water puffer from the same terrarium.


"I see you!"


Fire Bellied Salamander striking a pose in the warm shallow water.


"Keep me away from the pythons, okay, buddy?"


"I think I'll just stretch out here and take a nap..."


The Bearded Dragons are pretty cool. Much more active than the geckos.


Again, their artificial environment is designed for their needs, keeping them healthy and content.


Strike a pose, sun-worshipper.


Here's looking at you, kiddo.


Is it obvious who this dragon belongs to...? LOL.


Until next time, go enjoy some critters of your own...

Brian A. Hopkins
at Road's End, Oklahoma City
22 Feb 2009

Copyright 2011 Brian A. Hopkins, 2011-07-31 10:25,