• Colonial National Historical Park

    Colonial

    National Historical Park Virginia

Reptiles

Turtle

Turtle

Chuck Rafkind

Reptiles are integral links in the flow of energy in natural ecosystems. They are predators of many animals, some of which are pests, and they are prey for other animals in the food web. Reptiles are declining worldwide. The primary cause is habitat loss, but commercialization for food and skins, disease, introduced species, environmental pollution, and global climate change cause population decline and loss. Park records list 52 species. This includes turtles, lizards, skink and snakes. A survey for herps (reptiles and amphibians) was recently completed for the Jamestown environs. That survey found eleven species of frogs, seven species of salamanders, seven species of turtles, three species of lizards, and eight species of snakes.

Did You Know?

A raccoon searching for food among shoreline rocks

The words opossum, raccoon, persimmon and Chesapeake are not English words, but rather Algonquian words, the language of the Powhatan Indians of the Chesapeake Bay area. John Smith, William Strachey and others published list of various Indian words.