Reptiles and amphibians: Books about amphibians

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Frogs and Toads


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Devin Edmonds works on amphibian conservation in Madagascar, where he has helped to set up a captive frog breeding facility. He was previously an amphibian breeder, and has a degree in zoology. He has written both popular and academic articles on caring for and conserving amphibians.

‘Frogs and Toads’ is an introductory guide to keeping toads and frogs, including tree frogs. It‘s clearly written, and covers health issues, one of Edmonds’ particular concerns, as well as housing, feeding and breeding. He stresses preventing health problems by providing the right environment. There is some information on individual species, though as different species of frogs and toads vary in their needs, it’s not really enough as a care manual for a particular species. ‘Frogs and Toads’ is an excellent starter-guide, and useful for people just interested in amphibians, and anyone deciding on which species to keep.


Reptiles, Amphibians and Invertebrates: An Identification and Care Guide 


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The Bartletts are veteran herpetologists who have published many works on amphibians and reptiles . ‘Reptiles, Amphibians and Invertebrates’ is a very useful introductory guide, which covers a lot of ground. It ‘s clearly written, and would suit older children interested in these creatures, as well as people considering keeping them in captivity. There’s enough information on individual species for a novice to make an informed choice, though anyone owning a reptile, amphibian or invertebrate needs to research the particular species to learn enough to care for it properly.

The book is well-illustrated, and , though basic, is accurate. It would make an attractive gift for young people wanting to learn about reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates.


Reptiles & Amphibians (Self-Assessment Colour Review)

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This book is designed for veterinarians and vet students who want to develop their knowledge of reptiles and amphibians. It is an unusual book in that it is both useful for vets, including experienced vets who don't often see herps, and is also accessible enough to be a valuable resource for anyone especially interested in amphibians and reptiles. This includes serious hobbyists who keep herps as pets.

The book is also likely to interest anyone studying reptiles and amphibians in the wild, especially those involved in their conservation. Vet books aren't cheap, but there aren't many vets who are specialists in herpetologic medicine, so it pays to develop your own expertise if you have a large collection that you want to keep healthy, or if you have responsibility for wildlife.


Ponds: Designing, Building, Improving and Maintaining Ponds and Water Features 


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The first step to attracting amphibians to your garden is to have the right sort of pond. This book is especially useful for people who want to build and maintain a pond as a haven for native amphibians. The Pond Specialist starts with advice on how to check out your garden to choose the best site. It lists what you're likely to need in terms of materials and tools, and gives advice on electrical wiring, if you plan anything fancy.

There is specific advice on wildlife ponds for amphibians, though this book is just as useful for people wanting to keep fish. The text is easy to follow, and readers are helped by plentiful photos and drawings. The explanations are thorough, there are discussions of advantages and disadvantages of different solutions, and there's lots of specific advice on what to do and what not to do.

'Ponds' is inexpensive and can save you money if you buy it before embarking on your project, rather than having to rectify expensive mistakes. Other books can tell you more about amphibians and wildlife in general, but this book is especially useful if you want to make a difference by creating a haven for amphibians.


Collins Pocket Guide - Freshwater Life


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This is a guide to more than 900 species of freshwater wildlife in the UK and mainland Europe, covering plants, insects, molluscs, and other wildlife, as well as amphibians. It is a useful addition to the library of anyone who is interested in freshwater ecology as a whole, rather than just attracting a few frogs to their pond. The book is very well illustrated, so can help you identify insects which may colonise your pond, enabling you to check whether they can live alongside amphibians or are likely to pose a threat to tadpoles and adults.

This guide to Freshwater Life is also a useful book to take on holiday anywhere where you're likely to be able to observe freshwater wildlife. There are a lot of illustrations which make the book interesting for younger naturalists who want to know more about what they see in streams and ponds. This is a book that will deepen your understanding of native wildlife, and the environment in which amphibians live in the UK.