Reptiles

Reptiles have been on earth for about 200 million years. They have skin covered with scales or plates. All reptiles are cold-blooded, meaning they depend on their environment for body heat.

Examples of reptiles found at the St. Maarten Zoo are snakes, turtles, caimans, and iguanas.

Red-Footed Tortoise

Native to South America, the red footed tortoise has been introduced to many islands in the Caribbean. It’s name comes from from the red or orange scales visible on its limbs, as well as its head and tail.  They make good pets, because they don’t jump up on you when you get home. The male has a hollow carapace at the bottom so he does not fall off the female while mating, which they do a lot and in a noisy way. We have had numerous babies born at the St. Maarten Zoo.

Iguanas

If you come to visit the Zoo, you might see iguanas crossing your path. These interesting creatures are free roaming at the Zoo.

Caimans

The St. Maarten Zoo is home to Spectacled Caimans, which are native to Central and South America. The caiman is a small member of the crocodile family. One of the caimans at the Zoo is named Indy. He was donated to the Zoo by the members of the community who were unhappy to see him trapped in a very small enclosure in an island restaurant.  Indy now lives in the Zoo in a  large exhibit which is his own special home.

Snakes

Snakes are elongated, legless, carnivorous reptiles.The snakes in the two pictures below are a Rainbow Boa and a Burmese Python. Some consider the Rainbow Boa the most beautiful snake in the world.