Learn Your Lizards at the Arboretum June 29

color RogerRacutCollaredLizardWildManPhil.tif

Wildman Phil Rakoci (Photo by Roger Racut)

Pinal County desert ecology educator Phil Rakoci has been known to produce a Chuckwalla from the recesses of his baggy cargo pants pockets – prompting the lizard to gulp air, puff-up like a blowfish – and instantly rally the audience’s attention for a lesson about Sonoran Desert lizards.

Known to friends and fans as ‘Wild Man Phil,’ he’s also famous for talking nonchalantly while an ornate tree lizard’s securely clamped to one of his earlobes, and for sharing his affection for horned lizards, scorpions and rattlesnakes.

On June 29, Rakoci guides his popular summertime walking tour to see native lizards along the trails at Boyce Thompson Arboretum near the historic copper-mining town of Superior at 8 a.m.; he returns July 13, Aug. 10 and Sept. 14. His walks at BTA are included with daily admission of $9 for adults (admission fee goes to $10 starting July 1) or $4.50 for kids age 5-12.

The Arboretum also has a gourd art class next weekend, a ‘camera basics’ workshop June 29, a guided bird walk June 30; even a dragonfly walk July 6. Read complete details on all events at ag.arizona.edu/bta, or connect with 4,100 fans at facebook.com/boycethompsonarboretum. Fans can also catch Wild Man Phil shows at public libraries and civic centers all across AZ; last week he gave shows that mix humor with desert critter lessons from Casa Grande to Coolidge, Avondale, Ahwatukee and Flagstaff.

“What do I bring to a typical show? The fun stuff, creepy crawlies — scorpions, maybe a centipede and spider, lizards, turtles, snakes —mostly native critters, but some exotics to compare, too,” Rakoci says. “Highlights are usually my emperor scorpion, tarantula, kingsnake, coachwhip, or the 14-foot python. Other options include a chameleon, chuckwalla, horned lizard, gecko, collared lizard and, of course, our 45-pound celebrity: ‘Stumpy, the Tortoise with a Wheel,’ who is probably the only Desert Tortoise in Arizona who has his own Facebook page.”

Read more at wildmanphil.com, check his schedule and connect on facebook (keyword “Wildman-Phil”) or call Rakoci at 520-510-9500.

Leave a Reply

  • Latest News

    Pastor’s Corner: Celebrating the Sacrifice of Jesus Christ

    April 15th, 2014
    by

    In John 19:28-30 we read these words:  “Knowing that all was now completed and so that the Scripture would be fulfilled,


    Cross country runner makes stop in Superior to help veterans

    April 15th, 2014
    by

    Anna Judd, a 29-year-old resident of Orange County, has set out on a mission to run across America to raise money and awareness for veterans.


    Superior Little League parade is Monday

    April 15th, 2014
    by

    The Superior Little League will kick off its 2014 Major and Minor Baseball and Softball League seasons with the annual Little League Parade on Monday, April 21.


    Superior Public Library celebrates National Library Week: Lives Change @ Your Library

    April 15th, 2014
    by

    Libraries and librarians have a powerful and positive impact on the lives of Americans on a daily basis.


  • More Stories

    Valentine’s month ‘Hearts Rock’ photography at the Arboretum

    February 5th, 2014
    by

    February is a special month for lovers, including lovers of the Boyce Thompson Arboretum (BTA). In celebration of this special […]


    Batter up for the 2014 Little League season

    February 5th, 2014
    by

    The Superior Little League Board of directors are gearing up for another community tradition and that is Little League Baseball/Softball. […]


    Need a ride? New service available in Superior

    February 5th, 2014
    by

    Superior – There is a new business in the town of Superior, and it is taking everyone, including the Superior […]


    Superior Police Report

    February 5th, 2014
    by

    According to state law, police may arrest suspected offenders by two methods. The suspect may be physically taken into the […]


  • Facebook

  • [Advertisement.]
  • Arizona Headlines & Current Weather

  • Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin