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Reptiles – Snakes, Lizards and Turtles

Snakes are an integral part of a wetlands environment, and must always be treated with extreme caution.

The walking paths around the lake are made wide enough to ensure snakes are spotted in ample time to allow them to move off the path.

Care must be taken, especially in the warmer months, to ensure children stay on the paths and do not venture into the longer grass.

Austrelaps superbus

(Lowland Copperhead)
The Lowland Copperhead is by far the most reported snake at the lake. These snakes have adapted to a colder climate, and love areas around wetlands. They feed mostly on frogs and lizards, but will also eat small mammals and birds. As an adaptation to living in a colder climate, the Lowland Copperhead gives birth to live young instead of laying eggs. The young are tiny clones of the adults, including the venom, and are considered dangerous to humans.

Pogona barbata

(Eastern Bearded Dragon)
An Eastern Bearded Dragon is an uncommon sight at Lake McIntyre, and this little guy didn't seem to mind waiting around to have his photo taken. Usually placid and with a diet of mainly vegetation and insects, these dragons don't pose much of a threat. (Photo courtesy N. Boyle)

Chelodina longicollis

(Eastern Long-necked Turtle)
The Eastern long-necked Turtle is very common in Eastern Australia and inhabits almost any type of slow moving water, from farm dams to large rivers and lakes. They feed mostly on fish, tadpoles, frogs and crayfish. These are our local native turtles. The bird hides are a good place to sit quietly and watch as they sun themselves on logs during spring and early summer.

Emydura macquarii

(Macquarie Turtle)
The Macquarie Turtle, or Murray Short-necked Turtle, is not a true local to this area. They are naturally restricted to the Murray-Darling River System. Popular as pets while they are small, they are sold in pet shops as penny-turtles, they eventually grow into large (30cm) adults which become harder to keep as pets. As a result, there have been many instances where the large turtle has been 'released' into ponds, dams and waterways. It appears Lake McIntyre is one of the areas that has been used to 'release' a Macquarie Turtle.

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