TAKAO 599 MUSEUM

Treasures of Mt. Takao

Others

Mt. Takao has abundant nature with warm-temperature forests and temperate forests. There are a lot more species could be called as "treasure" inhabits other than explained in animals, insects and birds section. Spiders is one of them because they are beneficial insects and its prey is destructive insects. Over 300 species including rare ones inhabits and Mt. Takao is the mountain with the largest number of species of spiders and widely known as a paradise for spiders.

  • Plestiodon japonicas トカゲ科
    Plestiodon japonicas
    Plestiodon japonicas トカゲ科
    They inhabit in eastern Japan Hosyu area from Kyoto to Wakayama except for Hokkaido and Izu Peninsula.
    It was thought that they used to be the same species as Plestiodon japnicus which inhabits in western Japan, but that they turned out to be the different species in 2012,and thus the name of Plestiodon japonicus was given to the one that inhabit in eastern Japan (The name of the one for the western Japan is the same, not changed).
    They dwell at the grasslands and the mountain forest from low altitudes to high land, and we can often see them sunbathe on the ground of the mountain trail and on a sunny slope at Mt. Takao.
    The body is tinged with glowing brownish yellow, and smooth body surface to touch.
    They have as 1.5 long a tail as their head trunk. Larva has a black body and a tail tinged with metallic blue, which makes them stand out well.
    They are quick in move and very cautious, so that when they see figures of people they immediately run into within the shadows. Nevertheless, when caught by the enemies they can cut their tail themselves to run, which is called ‘Jigiri’ (cutting oneself by a part of their body).
    The eat baits such as small insects, spiders, and Porcellio scaber.
    In June they lay eggs and a female parent incubates eggs.

    ●Size  about 15 to 25 cm
    ●Season  about April to October
  • Takydromus tachydromoides (Japanese Grass Lizard) Tiger Keelback
    Takydromus tachydromoides (Japanese Grass Lizard)
    Takydromus tachydromoides (Japanese Grass Lizard) Tiger Keelback
    Main region: Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu, Yaku Island, Tanega Island and Nakanoshima Island. Found in grasslands and shrubs from flatlands to low elevations and also around residential areas and often see them sunbathing on rock fences and rocks at gardens. The Japanese name Nihon-kana-hebi literally meaning Japanese cute snakes but they are a group of lizards, not snakes. The biggest difference from Japanese five-lined skink is to have rough surfaced scales. Are active during daytime and sleep on fallen leaves or grass at night. Are predators and feed on spiders and porcellio scabers. Have distinct long tails and the length is twice as long as the length of head to body. Are able to cut own tails to protect itself from enemies. The body color is brown from back to side of abdomen and white on abdomen. Have one white line from under the eye to the side of abdomen.

    ●Body Length  about 16 to 27 cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Elaphe climacophora (Japanese Rat Snake) Tiger Keelback
    Elaphe climacophora (Japanese Rat Snake)
    Elaphe climacophora (Japanese Rat Snake) Tiger Keelback
    Main region: Hokkaido to Kyushu, Kunashiri Island, Sado Island and Goto Islands. Found in forests and grasslands from flatlands to mountains and also in ceilings. Most commonly known snake in Honshu. The body color is brownish olive but varies by individual species. The body size of large species is more than 2 meters but they are calm and not poisonous. Are good at climbing up trees by using keeled scales, even vertical trees or power poles and hunt for baby birds or eggs in bird’s nests. The white species called shirohebi literally meaning white snakes are the albino species of this species. This white rat snakes live in Iwakuni city of Yamaguchi prefectures and are designated as protected species.

    ●Body Length  about 100 to 200 cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Elaphe quadrivirgata (Japanese Striped Snake) Tiger Keelback
    Elaphe quadrivirgata (Japanese Striped Snake)
    Elaphe quadrivirgata (Japanese Striped Snake) Tiger Keelback
    Main region: Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, Kunashiri Island, Sado Island and Osumi Islands. Found in sunny croplands, riverbeds and grasslands from flatlands to mountains as they often bath in the sun. Are commonly known snakes like Japanese forest ratsnake and tiger keelback. Body patterns vary by individual species but most of them have four black stripes as the Japanese name Shima-hebi literally meaning stripe snake states. Some species have black body and called karasu-hebi literally meaning crow snake. Are active during daytime and hunt for frogs, rats, lizards, salamanders and eggs of birds. Also have a habit to eat another snakes such as Japanese forest ratsnake and amphiesma vibakari. When sensing dangers, threat others by making S shape with body.

    ●Body Length  about 80 to 200 cm
    ●Season  April to about October
  • Elaphe conspicillata (Japanese Forest Ratsnake) Tiger Keelback
    Elaphe conspicillata (Japanese Forest Ratsnake)
    Elaphe conspicillata (Japanese Forest Ratsnake) Tiger Keelback
    Main region: Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu, Kunashiri Island, Izu Islands and Tanega Island. Found in croplands and grasslands in flatlands but mainly in forests of low elevations. Have small head and does not have skinny neck that is suitable for living underground as the Japanese name Jimuguri literally meaning to live underground states. Feed on rat live underground and small moles. Hunt these preys by searching their nest tunnels and sneaking inside the nests. Are calm and not poisonous and does not bite. Only bite when they are sensing dangers like human beings trying to touch their body. Sometimes release grass-like smelled secretions from anal glands. Go dormant in winter but often stay underground even in summer as they are not so bearable in hot weather.

    ●Body Length  about 70 to 100 cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Amphiesma vibakari vibakari (Japanese Keelback) Tiger Keelback
    Amphiesma vibakari vibakari (Japanese Keelback)
    Amphiesma vibakari vibakari (Japanese Keelback) Tiger Keelback
    Main region: Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu, Sado Island and Iki Island, Oki Island and Goto Islands. Small snake found in wide varieties of areas including forests, grasslands, paddy fields and croplands. The Japanese name Hibakari came from its literally meaning to be bitten or live only a day, however they are not poisonous and does not bite because they are very calm. When sensing dangers, threat others by making S shape with body. Are active on the ground but mostly stay underwater as they are good at swimming compare to other snakes. Feed on waterside species including small frogs or tadpoles and even hunt for fishes in water such as loaches.

    ●Body Length  about 40 to65 cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Rhabdophis tigrinus (Tiger Keelback) Tiger Keelback
    Rhabdophis tigrinus (Tiger Keelback)
    Rhabdophis tigrinus (Tiger Keelback) Tiger Keelback
    Main region: Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu, Sado Islands, Goto Islands, Yaku Island and Tanega Island. Found in flatlands to low elevations and prefer paddy fields and swampy areas. Feed on frogs, lizards and fish but prefer frogs the best. This species is large in body size and even feed on toads which most of other snakes does not. Are not harmful to human beings compare to habu and pit viper but it is dangerous to be bitten because there are poisonous fangs deep inside of mouth. The poison causes death depending on the condition of human body. Also have poison in glands at the back of neck. It is dangerous even to step on them because the skin of poisonous glands will break and poisonous secretion will splash. Normally stay calm and does not bite unless human beings try to touch or catch them.

    ●Body Length  about 70 to 150 cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Gloydius blomhoffii Viperinae
    Gloydius blomhoffii
    Gloydius blomhoffii Viperinae
    They live widely in Hokkaido, main land Honsyu, Shikoku, Kyusyu as well as Osumi-shoto Islands and Izu Peninsula.
    Mainly they inhabit in the bushes along the mountain streams at low lands, in the forest, and woods in the mountain district, but we sometimes see them in arable land.
    They are very notorious poisonous snake, and there are so many incidental deaths that people die.
    Their body is tinged with pale dark brown as base, usually have elliptically-shaped mottles with black mottles in their center in line, while some tinged with strong red, some entirely in black.
    There are varietas. Basically, they are nocturnal animal, around the time when temperatures were much lower, they are active even during the daytime.
    We sometimes see them at Mt. Takao, we, ordinary mountain climbers hardly come across them if we walk within the specified Trail rout areas.
    If we happen to encounter them, keep our hands off, keep ourselves away 1m away, and let them pass, they do not attack us.
    Their main bait is such small animals and insects as rats, lizards, and frogs.
    They can use a sense of vision and a sense of smell as well as an organ called ‘a pit’ near the nose to detect infrared-ray to find baits.
    They are an ovoviviparous animal (Rantaisei: a female spider hatches the eggs inside their own body, and then lays them as baby spiders), lay about 10 baby spiders from the end of the summer till he autumn.

    Size  about 45 to 60 cm
    Season  April to October
  • Hynobius tokyoensis (Tokyo Salamander) Salamander
    Hynobius tokyoensis (Tokyo Salamander)
    Hynobius tokyoensis (Tokyo Salamander) Salamander
    Main region: Kanto area (except Gunma prefecture) and some parts of Fukushima prefecture. Found in forests on hills and waterside in mountains and mostly live on the ground except breeding season. The baby is like the small version of axolotl and live mostly underwater. Feed on insects live on the ground including earthworms, porcellio scabers, spiders and wood louses. The body color varies by individual species but mostly dark-brown with black spots on entire body. Are active at night and it is difficult to find during daytime as they are normally hide alone underground and under rocks. In autumn, become even more active to hunt for preys in order to prepare for going dormant in winter and breeding. The breeding season is from February to March and often found in water with no flow including ponds or ditches of paddy fields.

    ●Body Length  about 8 to 13 cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Hynobius kimurae (Hida Salamander) Salamander
    Hynobius kimurae (Hida Salamander)
    Hynobius kimurae (Hida Salamander) Salamander
    Main region: Kanto area, Chubu area, Hokuriku area, Kinki area and Chugoku area. Found in appropriate humid areas of valleys and streamside in mountain forests. The body color is purple-brown with yellow spots like sprinkles gold leaf. Are active at night and daytime of rainy days. Are mostly rest under the rocks and fallen leaves and become active after dark and hunt for earthworms, slugs, spiders and small insects. Adults mostly live on the ground but move to waterside to lay eggs during breeding season. Lay eggs in upstream of streams with moderate water flow and lay eggs in egg sac on the rocky ground. Egg sac is bluish fluorescent color.

    ●Body Length  about 10 to18 cm
    ●Season  All year
  • Bufo japonicus formosus (Eastern-Japanese Common Toad) Eastern-Japanese Common Toad
    Bufo japonicus formosus (Eastern-Japanese Common Toad)
    Bufo japonicus formosus (Eastern-Japanese Common Toad) Eastern-Japanese Common Toad
    Main region: Some parts of Hokkaido (man-induced distribution), Honshu (from Tohoku region to Kinki region on Japan Sea side, North of Sanin area and some part of Kii peninsula). Found in forests from flatlands to mountains and also in temples or residence. Are widely known as “gama” from ancient time. The body size varies by living region, smaller in cold climate area like Tohoku region and become larger in warm climate. The body color also varies by regions but most of them are brown but some are reddish or yellowish. Hardly ever jump and just walk. Are predators and feed on insects, spiders and earthworms. The white secretions from the protrusions on the back are poisonous.

    ●Body Length  about 9 to 17cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Rana ornativentris (Montane Brown Frog) Tago’s Brown Frog
    Rana ornativentris (Montane Brown Frog)
    Rana ornativentris (Montane Brown Frog) Tago’s Brown Frog
    Main region: Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu and Sado Island. Found in paddy fields, ponds and swamps in flatlands to forests up to 1,000 meters elevations. Is commonly known frogs. The body color varies by individual species but mostly reddish as the Japanese name Yama-aka-gaeru literally meaning red frog in mountains. Are red-brown to dark-brown on the back and light red to orange from side of abdomen, fore legs and thigh. Feed on earthworms, slugs and small insects. The way they go dormant is quite unique. Some do live underground just like other frogs do but some hide under the ground in water and spend throughout winter in water.

    ●Body Length  about 4 to 8 cm
    ●Season  March to October
  • Rana tagoi tagoi (Tago’s Brown Frog) Tago’s Brown Frog
    Rana tagoi tagoi (Tago’s Brown Frog)
    Rana tagoi tagoi (Tago’s Brown Frog) Tago’s Brown Frog
    Main region: Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu and Goto Islands. Found in forests and streams in mountains. The body color varies by individual species from ocher to red-brown. Feed on insects, spiders and shellfish that mostly live on the ground. Male have vocal sac (sound-resonating throat pouch) and create unique voice with low tones during breeding season but it is difficult to find them as they are mostly hiding between rocks as they are small species. Breeding season is from February to March, and lay larger sized eggs compare to other frogs. Hatched tadpoles live from nutrients from eggs and live on the ground after emerged to adults. It was named after famous herpetologist Prof. Katsuya Tago.

    ●Body Length  about 3 to 5 cm
    ●Season  March to October
  • Buergeria buergeri (Kajika Frog) Schlegel’s Green Tree Fro
    Buergeria buergeri (Kajika Frog)
    Buergeria buergeri (Kajika Frog) Schlegel’s Green Tree Fro
    Main region: Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu and Goto Islands. Found in up-stream to mid-stream and surrounding forests. The body color is gray to brown with dark spots patterns. It becomes the protecting color and is hard to find them especially when rested on rocks in rivers. The beautiful voice has been loved by people from ancient times, and makes “fi fi fi fi fi” sounds. This resembles the voice of deer, hence the Japanese name Kajika-gaeru literally meaning deer frogs. It was farmed many in Edo period and the tool called Kajika basket to foster them. The body size differs by genders, female is twice as large as male.

    ●Body Length  about 5 to 7 cm
    ●Season  April to October
  • Rhacophorus arboreus Schlegel’s Green Tree Fro
    Rhacophorus arboreus
    Rhacophorus arboreus Schlegel’s Green Tree Fro
    They live widely in Hokkaido, main land Honsyu, Shikoku, Kyusyu as well as Osumi-shoto Islands and Izu Peninsula.
    As their name show it, they inhabit in the woodland, adults dwell almost on the trees. On occasion, they live in the forests of Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines with ponds, they are designated as a protected species in many inhabitant places.
    Some are tinged with green with the back in dark green. Some are tinged with green with the red-brown patterns.
    They resemble Rhacophorus schlegelii, but Rhacophorus arboreus has larger bodies and the red color around eyes, which is how to distinguish the two.
    A male’s chirp sounds like ‘KO-KO-KO’ or ‘KA-KA-KA’.
    From late April to July, 1 female and several males lay eggs on the branches that protrude over the water.
    These eggs are wrapped within meringue-like smother.
    The eggs incubate in 7 – 10 days to change into tadpole, and fall into the water.


    Size  Male: about 40 to 60 cm, Female: about 50 to 75 cm
    Season  April to about October
※Quotation from Mount Takao formula application
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