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Mike Mars

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About Mike Mars

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 09/29/1977

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    I have been studying Herpetology for over 20 years. I have done field work in CT, NY, VT, PA, NJ, MD, DE, SC, NC, and FL. I specialize in turtles, crocodilians, snakes of the genus Lampropeltis, and the herpetofauna of the coastal plain of the mid-Atlantic and Southeastern United States. Some of my favorite places to view wildlife are the New Jersey Pine Barrens, the Florida Everglades, and the Delmarva Peninsula.

    I currently educate people on amphibians & reptiles through social media as well as in public programs.

    Please check out my facebook page :

    The largest education-based universal wild snake group on Facebook :

    Wild Snakes : Education & Discussion

    P.S. I am also interested in birds! I was heavily into birding for a few years when I was a teenager, and thanks to this forum, I am getting back into it.

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  1. Mike Mars

    Please help with ID

    Yes, my location is also there, but I post photos from all over. One can never assume that the animal you posted is from the location under your avatar. Miami would definitely be a Florida (Banded) Watersnake (Nerodia fasciata pictiventris).
  2. Mike Mars

    lizard check

    Now that I come back a few days later I realize that this is a female Texas Spiny Lizard. I apologize for the error! Western lizards can be confusing. This is a great site to look through and get familiar with the different species. http://herpsoftexas.org/
  3. Mike Mars

    Please help with ID

    This is a Banded Watersnake (Nerodia fasciata). Providing a location is one of the most important things to include when seeking an ID.
  4. Mike Mars

    Sankes from South FL

    1. Appears to be a Cottonmouth (Agkistrodon contanti), with the "chiseled" head and dark face mask. 2. Southern Black Racer (Coluber constrictor priapus)
  5. Mike Mars

    lizard check

    Prairie Lizard (Sceloporus consobrinus)
  6. Mike Mars

    lizard check

    What's the location?
  7. Diamond-backed Watersnake (Nerodia rhombifer).
  8. Couple of problems here ; many non-venomous snakes, such as the broad-banded watersnake here, can flatten their head in a defensive display, appearing "triangular". Second, both venomous and non-venomous snakes can both swim on top of the water and also swim submerged with only the head protruding. They regulate this by inflating their lung. Pit vipers (copperhead, cottonmouth, rattlers) do tend to float on top, but can just as easily submerge themselves.
  9. Mike Mars

    South Carolina Frog

    I'd also lean towards Bullfrog, but the Pig Frog can look very similar. You'd have to examine the toes and webbing on the feet to reliably identify this frog.
  10. Yes, #6 is a soft-shelled turtle. One of two species, but can be difficult to separate at a distance. All other turtles are yellow-bellied sliders, including a few which have turned almost all black. This is age-related melanism which happens in Sliders and some other turtles.
  11. Mike Mars

    Gopher Tortoise

    Yes, Gopher Tortoise is the only native Florida tortoise. This is one.
  12. Mike Mars


  13. Mike Mars


    Flew into a friends car in Texas.
  14. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080311075326.htm