Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

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mothman
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Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

Post by mothman » July 3rd, 2014, 7:31 am

I will be going on a photographic birding tour in Panama to the Canopy Tower in the Canal Zone and to El Valle de Anton in the highlands in August. I want to go herping after the bird tour. Can anyone suggest some good sites to find herps? I am especially interested in finding the lizards Corytophanes cristatus, Dactyloa frenata, Polychrus gutturosus, any Norops but all herps are very welcome to visit my camera lens. Also, can someone suggest a person who is a herping guide that can add me in my search? I have contacted Mr. Mario Urriola of the Serpentario at El Valle de Anton about guiding me in my quest for herps but he is unavailable. Any information about good herping sites and personal guides would be most appreciated. Thanks.

johngphillips
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Re: Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

Post by johngphillips » July 3rd, 2014, 6:13 pm

I cannot recommend any personal guides (was doing research), but I saw all three of your desired species on Barro Colorado Island. Also Pipeline road, near Gamboa is great - only was there once but I saw Siphlophis cervinus, Dactyloa chocorum, Norops apletophallus, Leptophis ahetulla, Hypsiboas boans, Norops poecilopus, Basiliscus basiliscus, glass frogs, caiman, and an undescribed Norops species. Pipeline road is also a birding site.

Jacob
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Re: Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

Post by Jacob » July 3rd, 2014, 6:24 pm

La Mica Biological Station with Dr. Julie Ray...just google for more info and contact information

gretzkyrh4
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Re: Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

Post by gretzkyrh4 » July 3rd, 2014, 7:17 pm

Replied to your PM, mothman. I'll forward along more info when I'm back after the weekend. Julie is another great option as Jacob mentioned. She's a bit of a drive from El Valle though (El Cope is well worth it if you can make it though).

Chris

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Ribbit
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Re: Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

Post by Ribbit » July 4th, 2014, 7:33 am

johngphillips wrote:Also Pipeline road, near Gamboa is great - only was there once but I saw Siphlophis cervinus, Dactyloa chocorum, Norops apletophallus, Leptophis ahetulla, Hypsiboas boans, Norops poecilopus, Basiliscus basiliscus, glass frogs, caiman, and an undescribed Norops species.
I see your list doesn't include Anolis limifrons. I had a quick jaunt down Pipeline Road years ago and the only lizards I saw were some small, slender anoles that I identified as Anolis limifrons. Do you think I was mistaken (or maybe they've been split since then)? (A couple pictures are at http://www.wildherps.com/species/A.limi ... #4/18/2001.)

John

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mothman
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Re: Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

Post by mothman » July 5th, 2014, 3:18 pm

johngphillips wrote:I cannot recommend any personal guides (was doing research), but I saw all three of your desired species on Barro Colorado Island. Also Pipeline road, near Gamboa is great - only was there once but I saw Siphlophis cervinus, Dactyloa chocorum, Norops apletophallus, Leptophis ahetulla, Hypsiboas boans, Norops poecilopus, Basiliscus basiliscus, glass frogs, caiman, and an undescribed Norops species. Pipeline road is also a birding site.
You were very successful on Pipeline Road. The Canopy Tower birding trip will go down there. I am glad there will be some herps to see. The "true" birders will be looking up in the trees and I will be scouring the lower vegetation! I was not intending to go to Barro Colorado Island but due to your comment I will reverse course an arrange a tour.

Thanks for the info.

Mothman

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Jon Wedow
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Re: Herping sites and personal guides in Panama

Post by Jon Wedow » July 7th, 2014, 7:20 am

There are plenty of great trails near Gamboa. There are some local guides but most specialize in birds. Michael Castro was in Gamboa the last time I stayed there and he is mainly a bird guide but knows his reptiles well. I believe he worked for this group at the time - http://advantagepanama.com - but sometimes they are in the Darien or other parts of the country too.

Camino las Cruces and Pipeline Rd alone should be more than you could hike on your entire trip and the trails are long enough and habitat is good enough that you could probably repeat the same trails over and over again.

Good luck!

Image

Jon

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