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Index
Malolotja's Invertebrates
Malolotja's Fish
Malolotja's Birds
Malolotja's Mammals
Malolotja's Fauna
Malolotja

Malolotja Nature Reserve - Reptiles and Amphibians

Malolotja boasts an interesting and diverse herpetofauna (the collective name for amphibians and reptiles). These groups of vertebrates have been well collected and studied and, at present, 81 types of amphibians and reptiles are recorded from the reserve and its immediate vicinity. These consist of 21 types of amphibians and 60 types of reptiles (27 lizards, 32 snakes and 1 terrapin).

This great diversity reflects the large variety of habitat types that are represented. Only six potentially dangerous snakes occur in the reserve but these are infrequently encountered. They are the puff adder, rinkhals, Mozambique spitting cobra, black mamba, boomslang and vine snake. These few species represent less than twenty percent of the snakes found in the reserve. This is not a frightening statistic as it would mean that on average, only one out of five snakes that might be encountered at Malolotja could be potentially dangerous. Add to this the fact that all these snakes, except the puff adder, are timid by nature and will move out of the way. This behaviour is also true of the black mamba.

The importance of Malolotja to reptiles and amphibians is reflected in the observation that of the total number of species recorded from the reserve, twenty-eight of them, approximately 35%, are endemic to the Swaziland highveld, that is they do not occur anywhere else in Swaziland. One of the lizards, the Swazi thick-tailed rock gecko, was discovered in Swaziland in 1984 and does not occur anywhere else in the world. Similarly, the Swazi rock snake, was discovered in the Forbes Reef area of Malolotja in 1968, and for a long time was only known from a few localities in the highveld region of Swaziland. Only recently has it been recorded from the escarpment slopes of the Transvaal north of Swaziland. The reptiles and amphibians of Malolotja are composed of an interesting variety and there are sure to be a number of additions to the list.

Priority species: Reptiles and Amphibians

Status Scientific Name Common Name

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REPTILIA
Afroedura pondolia major
Bradypodion sp.
Nucras lalandii
Mabuya capensis
Chamaesaura aenea
Lamprophis swazicus
Homoroselaps lacteus
Philothamnus natalensis occidentalis
Bitis atropos

AMPHIBIA
Heleophryne natalensis
Ptychadena porosissima
Strongylopus grayii grayii
Strongylopus fasciatus fasciatus
Semnodactylus wealii
REPTILES
Swazi thick-tailed gecko
Dwarf chameleon
Delalande's sandveld lizard
Cape skink
Transvaal snake lizard
Swazi rock snake
Spotted harlequin snake
Western Natal green snake
Berg adder

AMPHIBIANS
Natal ghost frog
Grassland ridged frog
Spotted rana
Long toed rana
Long toed running frog

Key to conservation status codes


E
V
R
I
O


r
e
Southern African Red Data Book species
Endangered
Vulnerable
Rare
Indeterminate
Out of danger

Species not included in the above categories which are:
regionally important species, rare in Swaziland or restricted distributions
Swaziland endemics

# species possibly occurs

Reptiles checklist

Amphibians checklist


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