Reptile and Amphibian Study
Hour 1 (2:00-2:50 M-Th)
Scouts have always been interested in snakes, turtles, lizards, and alligators. Most reptiles and amphibians are harmless, and many species can be kept in captivity with a minimum of care and attention. Developing knowledge about reptiles and amphibians leads to a deeper appreciation for all native wildlife. Reptile and Amphibian Study Merit Badge seeks to allow scouts to get up close with these animals as well as learn about their habitat, lifestyle, and many other unique characteristics. Reptile and Amphibian Study is one of the electives for the William T. Hornaday Award.
#8. Do ONE of the following:
a. Maintain one or more reptiles or amphibians for at least a month. Record food accepted, eating methods, changes in coloration, shedding of skins, and general habits; or keep the eggs of a reptile from the time of laying until hatching; or keep the eggs of an amphibian from the time of laying until their transformation into tadpoles (frogs) or larvae (salamanders).
b. Choose a reptile or amphibian that you can observe at a local zoo, aquarium, nature center, or other such exhibit (such as your classroom or school). Study the specimen weekly for a period of three months. At each visit, sketch the specimen in its captive habitat and note any changes in its coloration, shedding of skins, and general habits and behavior. Find out, either from information you locate on your own or by talking to the caretaker, what this species eats and what are its native habitat and home range, preferred climate, average life expectancy, and natural predators. Also identify any human caused threats to its population and any laws that protect the species and its habitat. After the observation period, share what you have learned with your counselor.
What to Bring:
Pen and Paper
Requirements: Click Here
Merit Badge Workbook: Click Here
Taught alongside Mammal Study.