Afghan Arabia Wild
by John M. Regan
Updated Monday 2 July 2018
Wounded Warrior Project
Devoted to the Wildlife of Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia
WILDLIFE OF AFGHANISTAN WILDLIFE OF SAUDI ARABIA EDITOR BIO
Welcome to Afghan Arabia Wild. This website is dedicated to the wildlife of Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia. The politics and war of these countries are well known, but forget about that for a while and focus on something far more fascinating - their natural history and wildlife. The Saudi desert teems with reptiles, birds, and a wonderfully unexpected array of mammals from fox to baboons, and spectacular display of fossils. Despite decades of war vast areas of Afghanistan remain wild and open. Camel spiders are familiar inhabitants of the country but so are bears, monkeys, and hyenas. So come on in. Immerse yourself in the unique wildlife of two very intriguing countries that have a lot more to offer than a daily headline of bad news.
Bengal Monitor Varanus bengalensis
Many thanks to Alan L for these excellent photographs of a Bengal Monitor. Alan is a reptile enthusiast and has also done quite a bit of work in Afghanistan. While there he managed to get these great pictures while in Khost near the eastern border of the country. I did not have the fortune to run into any examples of this big lizard but I have heard from several service members who had encounters with them near Jalabad. In one of these reports the observer believes that the monitor captured and ate a cat. He did not actually see the event but the cat suddenly disappeared after the lizard arrived on the scene. Also commonly called the Indian Monitor, this lizard is one of the biggest in the world so it is not unlikely that a cat would have fallen prey to it. Just one more example of the fascinating wildlife of Afghanistan. Although listed as a threatened species this monitor inhabits a very wide range of territories, habitats, and climates so there are positive signs for its survival. It is also a reptile with a fairly long life span that may exceed 20 years. For in depth descriptions of the Bengal Monitor check the references list below.
(Warning: The above photographs are protected by copyright and displayed here only with permission from the photographer)
Range: Iran to Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India and as far as Vietnam
Size: Up to 6 feet long (175 CM); 20 lbs (9 KG)
Some day I pray that this gorgeous country will be at peace and the whole world can see its beauty: AFGHANISTAN'S BEAUTIFUL GREEN ZONE!
Some late news - but good news just the same:
The Wide Saudi Desert
I surely miss my days of wandering around that incredible desert landscape. From red sands to high rocky cliffs the desert of Saudi Arabia provided endless fascination.
WILDLIFE OF SAUDI ARABIA