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 Post subject: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 28th, 2011, 9:33 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
Posts: 3179
Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
One of our favorite night walk spots is Ranchan Falls, a cluster of (nicely cold!) streams and small waterfalls close to Serian, 40 miles south of Kuching. Our first trip there, about two months ago, was rather bland in the herp department, but the number of phasmid species we found that night just blew us away.

If anyone could ID the non-ID'd species, I'd be very glad. Let's start with a few inverts for hors d'oeuvres:

Lantern bugs
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Leaf Snail
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Trilobite Beetle (Duliticola; larva?)
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Ivory Snail
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Hankering for something more solid now? The maitre d' recommends snake food:

Ansonia spinulifer
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NoID LBJ (Little Brown Frog, every herpetologist's bane)
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Flying Lizard (Draco sp - but which sp.?)
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Gonocephalus somethingsomething
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The chef follows up with a nice bowl of phasmid salad du jour. I haven't gotten around to buying "Phasmids of Borneo" yet (not that it's currently in the budget at three hundred and twenty American smackeroos), so no IDs.

Small phasmid
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Cammo phasmid
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Looooong phasmid
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And the highlight of the night: a male Malaysian Jungle Nymph (Heteropteryx dilatata). This is reputedly the world's heaviest insect, and who am I to doubt the experts? It certainly was the only insect I've ever had to transport in a snake bag - those spikes sure work as advertised, as my long-suffering son could attest to after the photo session.

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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 28th, 2011, 9:51 pm 

Joined: June 7th, 2010, 12:37 pm
Posts: 1207
Location: Ft. Smith, Arkansas
It's hard to enjoy a snakeless post, but you make it happen. Great post as usual, sir. We'll see you next time.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 3:50 am 
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Joined: June 7th, 2010, 4:14 pm
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Location: Asheville NC
What a cool post, thanks :thumb:

Do the lantern bugs illuminate?


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 6:11 am 
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Joined: July 30th, 2010, 10:48 am
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Location: KY: Woodford Co.
The trilobite beetle is really neat. I occasionally search for actual trilobites in our local marine limestones so seeing a living animal the sorta resembles them is very interesting.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 6:25 am 
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Joined: June 12th, 2010, 9:28 am
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Location: Monterey Peninsula, CA
Those phasmids are awesome. I really like the bumpy little Gonocephalus too.

John


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 6:41 am 
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Joined: June 7th, 2010, 4:05 pm
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Location: Kansas
Get it off me! Get it off me! Ahhhhhhhhhhh!!

Oh, phews. It was just a picture. shudder.

Dan


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 6:44 am 
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Joined: June 11th, 2010, 5:06 am
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Another great post!

The highlight for me was the lantern bugs. They are fascinating looking animals. I've not had a chance to see a live speciment in the field yet.

Mike


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 8:18 am 

Joined: June 20th, 2010, 7:37 am
Posts: 47
WOW-You just made my wife pee on her chair! :mrgreen:


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 8:50 am 
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Joined: June 27th, 2010, 12:27 pm
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Location: Terlingua / Marfa, Texas
Hans Breuer (twoton) wrote:
One of our favorite night walk spots is Ranchan Falls, a cluster of (nicely cold!) streams and small waterfalls close to Serian, 40 miles south of Kuching.
Are you sure that you didn't pass through a time warp? Those critters and that place look positively prehistoric. I'd be worried about velociraptors.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 29th, 2011, 8:45 pm 

Joined: August 28th, 2010, 2:15 pm
Posts: 52
Great stuff Hans!
The ID's are tough, but I will give it a guess (and I emphasize guess). The frog looks like a Meristogenys but could also be a Rana, possibly R. nicobarensis or R. chalconota. Habitat may help with the ID. If it was not near a stream, Meristogenys can probably be ruled out. The Draco looks like it could be D. maximus. Was it relatively large?
The little lizard on the leaf looks too spiny to be aGonocephalus. Perhaps something in the genus Phoxophrys

Cheers

EW


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 30th, 2011, 4:19 pm 
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Joined: October 28th, 2010, 4:34 am
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Location: based in UK
The Ansonia is awesome, great stuff


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 30th, 2011, 5:38 pm 
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Joined: June 7th, 2010, 4:26 am
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I don't have to bother you in PM's to post any trilobite beetles you find anymore, but feel free too. I really enjoyed the invert overload.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 31st, 2011, 12:49 am 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
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Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
Thanks very much, everyone!

Quote:
I don't have to bother you in PM's to post any trilobite beetles you find anymore, but feel free too

I shall, no worries. Those things are absolutely weird!

Quote:
The frog looks like a Meristogenys but could also be a Rana, possibly R. nicobarensis or R. chalconota. Habitat may help with the ID. If it was not near a stream, Meristogenys can probably be ruled out.

It was near a stream - you can't escape the streams in that area :-)

Quote:
The Draco looks like it could be D. maximus. Was it relatively large?

It was about six meters up a tree, shot @ 300mm. It was quite large, and maximus also crossed my mind, especially as the coloring seems to match.

Quote:
You just made my wife pee on her chair

Sorry. I knew I shouldn't have put that leaf snail up....the sight of a green snail is just too much to stomach for some folks :-) (PS: you WERE kidding, right?)

Quote:
Do the lantern bugs illuminate?

Not to my knowledge. They got the name because of their lantern-like facial proboscis, I believe.

Quote:
I'd be worried about velociraptors.

Those come only out on Friday and Saturday nights, to gorge themselves on the drunken local hooligans who litter the place with empty beer cans, torn krupuk bags, and clove cigarette buds.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: October 31st, 2011, 3:19 am 

Joined: June 10th, 2010, 11:57 am
Posts: 133
That male jungle nymph looks a) massive even for the species and b) much darker and more bulky than the ones I've seen from the captive population strain. Awesome post.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 1st, 2011, 2:46 am 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
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Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
CORRECTION: The "jungle nymph" is not Heteropteryx dilatata. The females in those are green, and the males only reach up to 8 cm. This animal is a female Haaniella echinata. While that's not the world's heaviest insect, it lays the largest eggs in the insect world: up to twelve millimeter in length.

Sorry for any inconveniences caused :-)


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 5th, 2011, 3:28 pm 
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Joined: June 9th, 2010, 6:17 am
Posts: 351
ImageLantern bug is Pyrops sp., snails coming...


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 6th, 2011, 7:48 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
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Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
FOLLOW-UP: I've been told that the leaf snail is Rhinocochlis nasuta, and it only inhabits limestone hill habitat.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 6th, 2011, 8:41 pm 
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Joined: October 18th, 2011, 12:03 pm
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i was so taken by the Ivory Snail that i spoke of it - out of the blue i described it to several persons - all animal and nature ppl and they all understood :thumb:


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 7th, 2011, 10:55 am 
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Joined: June 10th, 2010, 11:17 am
Posts: 1078
I love your posts...

The response to the walking stick... holy shiznit... that is huge. I recently found out that the ones in the US can spray an irratating acid substance.

The other bug... your son is either really brave... or really stupid. I'm assuming he is going on your guidence... 'don't worry... it won't bite... this ill make a great photo...' Seriously impressive.

The other bugs... The one that looks like a trilobite... that was my first thought before ever looking at the name.

(I'm still jealous of your posts.)


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 7th, 2011, 5:53 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
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Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
Thank you!

-EJ wrote:
The other bug... your son is either really brave... or really stupid. I'm assuming he is going on your guidence...

In that case, the guidance of the locals accompanying us. One of them came up to us with the big bug crawling around on his arm, and Hans just naturally took over :-) As a rule, if we don't know it, we don't touch it. That goes for animals as well as tree sap and luminous mushrooms.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 7th, 2011, 6:09 pm 
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Joined: June 10th, 2010, 11:17 am
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yea... place off blame... blame it on the locals.
Regardless... you're boy is going to love you for it.

The main similar posts I've seen...(not on here) is from (it so sucks i've killed so many brain cells)... (I know what he looks like but can't think of his name...) Lee Grismer... His posts from Viet Nam and such. I wonder if his kids appreciet that... I'll bet they do.

Regardless... I'm sure I'm not the only one who really appreciates your posts... not only for the natural history content... but the family content.

Hans Breuer (twoton) wrote:
Thank you!

-EJ wrote:
The other bug... your son is either really brave... or really stupid. I'm assuming he is going on your guidence...

In that case, the guidance of the locals accompanying us. One of them came up to us with the big bug crawling around on his arm, and Hans just naturally took over :-) As a rule, if we don't know it, we don't touch it. That goes for animals as well as tree sap and luminous mushrooms.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 7th, 2011, 9:57 pm 
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Joined: June 8th, 2010, 2:19 am
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Location: Kuching, Sarawak (Borneo)
Thanks again! I'm sure Lee Grismer's son Jesse appreciates what his dad does....he's a herpetologist himself and often works with Lee here in the Sundaland area. Lee often writes highly interesting and very entertaining pieces for the quarterly magazine of the Malaysia Nature Society. (I didn't know Lee posts here?)

I agree, herping with the family is really fantastic. The only sad thing about herping Borneo with my son is that my other son Karl currently can't join in the fun, as he's still in elementary school in Taiwan and won't finish before 2013. But he (and my wife) will come over for the entire summer holidays in 2012, and then we'll herp the island to pieces :-)


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: November 8th, 2011, 4:47 am 
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Lee or Jesse don't post here. I can't remember what forum it was... or maybe it was in a magazine of some sort... regardless... they have always been very accessable people. There was a recent article in Reptiles on one of their trips to Viet Nam... I could never do what they do. I just thought it was so cool that they still do stuff together. Jeff Lemm is another that comes to mind when I think of family.

Hans Breuer (twoton) wrote:
Thanks again! I'm sure Lee Grismer's son Jesse appreciates what his dad does....he's a herpetologist himself and often works with Lee here in the Sundaland area. Lee often writes highly interesting and very entertaining pieces for the quarterly magazine of the Malaysia Nature Society. (I didn't know Lee posts here?)

I agree, herping with the family is really fantastic. The only sad thing about herping Borneo with my son is that my other son Karl currently can't join in the fun, as he's still in elementary school in Taiwan and won't finish before 2013. But he (and my wife) will come over for the entire summer holidays in 2012, and then we'll herp the island to pieces :-)


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: March 27th, 2012, 8:28 am 

Joined: July 25th, 2010, 9:41 am
Posts: 59
I have worked with Lee and his family on several occasions in Cambodia and in Malaysia. The work they do is unbelievable. I used to be his student at La sierra for a while. Lee is such an approachable guy and probably hands down the most knowledgeable person I have ever talked to. Sitting in his herp class just blows you away. I would highly recommend anyone here to take it. He doesn't post on here, nor does his son. They keep away from all the immature bull**** drama and arguing/competition like antics that are a huge part of the forum.


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 Post subject: Re: Borneo Dispatches #12: Monster Phasmids, Flying Lizards
PostPosted: March 27th, 2012, 3:42 pm 
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Joined: July 15th, 2010, 4:48 am
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Those lantern bugs look awesome


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