HTR: Boelen’s Pythons with Ari Flagle

Jan 22, 2020
On the Web
by Editor in Chief

On the Web - Ari R. Flagle’s fascination for reptiles and amphibians started during childhood and progressively developed into an obsession. Since 1997, appreciation and concern for the species Simalia boeleni has directed Ari to embrace herpetology as a career. He has dedicated his life to these pythons and has been traveling and living in West Papua for over a decade, visiting his tribal family and these animals that have established themselves in his life.

Ari’s research and fieldwork in New Guinea led to the publication of the first comprehensive guide on the subject of Simalia boeleni in 2009 entitled Black Python, and his most recent book, Serpents in the Clouds: The Search for the New Guinea Boelen’s Python (2018). He has written numerous articles and has given presentations at conferences and herpetological society meetings all over the world on his fieldwork in West Papua on the conservation of these pythons and tribal groups.

With the continuation of his field research, Ari hopes to shed more light on the species’ natural history and to expose behaviors and activities that could help snake breeders around the planet to reach sustainable captive populations. Captive breeding might be the only hope of saving these snakes for future generations as human populations grow and spread and habitat dwindles, even in the remote mountaintops of New Guinea.

Learn more about Ari’s work on this episode of Herpin’ Time Radio.

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