Meet RA’s New Animal Keeper: Dragon Trainer Alice

Meet RA’s New Animal Keeper: Dragon Trainer Alice

school assemblies - animal assemblies

Alice Lovett

Lead Animal Keeper

Reptiles Alive Name: Dragon Trainer Alice

Hisstory: Dragon Trainer Alice’s past is filled with education. She graduated from  the University of Colorado, Boulder with a degree in Psychology in 2016 and started working as the Animal Keeper at RA in 2018.

RA Diet: Dragon Trainer Alice is easily sustained on a diet of leftovers, hot dogs, and tuna salad sandwiches.

Natural Diet: Dragon Trainer Alice, like many large reptiles, is omnivorous but greatly prefers meats over plants. She has a sweet spot for unusual and exotic fruits, like lychee, quince, and mangosteen, and she enjoys asparagus and artichokes. You will never see her chowing down on beef, though–her diet consists mainly of birds and fish.

Range: Dragon Trainer Alice was originally found in Texas, but was relocated several times until she was introduced to her long-term habitat in the foothills of Colorado. She has been spotted in Italy, Greece, Canada, and Mexico, and just recently, her primary range has been relocated to Northern Virginia and parts of Maryland.

Habitat: Dragon Trainer Alice is a shy and reclusive species, sighted mainly indoors with her close friends or a computer, but she also can be seen on shady nature trails, looking for insects near creeks and streams, and happily searching for new reading material at the library.

Size: Dragon Trainer Alice is small, at 5’0”, but mighty enough to defend her territory.

Lifespan: Dragon Trainer Alice is still young, and is expected to live for at least another 50-60 years.

Reproduction: Dragon Trainer Alice is unlikely to reproduce, but she acts as a parent to all the reptiles under her care at Reptiles Alive!

Conservation: From the time she was very young, Dragon Trainer Alice enjoyed learning about animals and was quick to help them out. She was known to pick up worms from the sidewalk after a rain and place them on dirt patches where they could burrow down and not dry out. In second grade, she designed a boat that would rescue and treat injured marine life for a class project, and she is always quick to offer facts about even the tiniest or most unusual creatures when prompted.

Cool Facts: Dragon Trainer Alice is particularly interested in the study and captive care of insects, and owns a small colony of Formica sp. ants. She is also an artist who occasionally references the reptiles she works with in order to draw more realistic and interesting dragons!

Creature Feature: Panther Chameleon

Panther Chameleon

Furcifer pardalis

school assemblies - preschool programs








Reptiles Alive Name:  Karma

Hisssstory: We adopted Karma from an owner who was no longer able to care for him.

RA Diet: Crickets and superworms

Range: Panther chameleons are found in the northern and eastern parts of Madagascar.

Habitat: Panther chameleons are adapted for life in the canopy of tropical forests.

Natural Diet: Panther chameleons will eat almost any species of insect and even small vertebrates, including smaller lizards.

Size: Including the tail, panther chameleons can grow 15-20 inches in length.

Reproduction: Female panther chameleons lay between 10-40 eggs.  When they are gravid, females turn a brown color that lets male chameleons know they are not interested in mating.

Lifespan: Panther chameleons typically live 5-7 years.

Conservation: Panther chameleons are adaptable to habitats that have been impacted by humans and are not currently threatened or endangered.

Cool Facts: 
Chameleons are amazing for so many reasons!

First, they have the ability to change colors from green to blue to yellow and even red!  They usually change color based on temperature and mood, not to match their environment.  If you put a chameleon on plaid, it won’t turn plaid.

Second, they have super long tongues – tongues as long or even longer than their own body!  They can shoot their long, sticky tongue out at a high rate of speed because of special muscles that control the tongue.

Third, they can move their eyes in two different directions at the same time!  Each eye can rotate and focus on different objects at the same time and the chameleons brain is able to interpret both images at once.  When they are about to shoot their tongue at an insect, they focus both eyes on the prey item to get a good shot.

And last but not least, their feet are adorable!

Job Opening: Animal Keeper – Position now FILLED

Job Opening:  Animal Keeper – Position now FILLED

Reptiles Alive LLC, located in Annandale VA,  is looking to hire a reliable, responsible and energetic professional to care for a collection of non-venomous reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates.

This is a permanent, part time (20-30 hours per week) position requiring the employee to work 3 weekdays per week.


Duties Will Include:

-Handling non-venomous reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates

-Cleaning animal enclosures

-Preparing animal food and feeding the animals

-Record keeping & light office work

-General cleaning of animal and office areas



Applicants must be highly responsible and able to work without supervision caring for a diverse collection of live exotic animals.

Ability to lift 40 pounds and work a physically active job for 8 hours per day.

Preferred candidates will have experience with and knowledge about reptile husbandry.

Successful candidate will have a clean criminal background and driving record check.


Pay starting at $15 per hour based on experience.

Please email your cover letter, resume, and 3 references to:

reptile birthday - animal party

Creature Feature: Boa Constrictors

Boa Constrictor

Boa constrictor

Reptiles Alive Names: “Cinco & Sunglow (the albino)”

kids parties - school assemblies

Cinco the boa constrictor sporting a ‘stache.


school assemblies - reptile program

Sunglow the albino boa constrictor

Hisssstory: Cinco was an unwanted pet that was left with the Alexandria Animal Welfare League’s animal shelter and then we adopted him. Sunglow came to us from a citizen who no longer wanted to care for her.

RA Diet: Frozen, defrosted and then warmed up jumbo sized dead rats.  Yummmmmmmmmmm.

Range: Boa constrictors have an enormous range from Mexico to Argentina.

 Boa constrictors  live in many habitats:  rain forests, dry tropical woodlands, grasslands, farms, and even urban regions.

Natural Diet: Boa constrictors will consume birds,  small mammals, and occasionally reptiles.

Size: Boa constrictors grow to an average length of 6 – 9 feet and have been know to grow to over 12 feet long. The anaconda, which is related to boa constrictors, is considered one of the largest snakes in world and can grow to more than 20 feet!

Reproduction: Females give live birth of up to 50 babies at a time.  One of the big differences between boas and pythons is that boas give birth to live young and pythons lay eggs.

 Boa constrictors are  long living snakes and can live for 40 years.

 Threats include:  human predation, roads, habitat loss and the pet trade. This is one of  the most commonly abandoned pet snakes.   Boa constrictors  get large, requiring custom built reptile enclosures, high heat and humidity, and food not found at the local grocery store!  Boas are not a great pet choice for most people.

Cool Facts: 
Boa constrictors are the kings and queens of the jungle.  Most rain forest animals are adapted to live in a specific layer of the forest.  For example:  Amazon river turtles live in the river, giant toads live on the forest floor,  and iguanas live in the canopy.  Boa constrictors, however, are adapted for living in all the layers of the jungle.  Like all snakes, they swim, so you can find them in the river.  Their beautiful colors give them camouflage that makes them almost invisible while resting quietly on the forest floor.  And, boa constrictors love to hang out in the canopy!  The boa constrictor is the master of the rain forest.

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We had a great experience with Reptiles Alive for my daughter’s 6th birthday party. Rachel arrived exactly on time, set up quickly, and immediately engaged the group of curious children. We had an impromptu dance party while waiting for last minute guests and Rachel was very accommodating. The children LOVED the show!! And my soon-to-be 11 year old wants them to come for his birthday! I highly recommend Reptiles Alive for your next event!read more

Kelly Maguire

Kelly Maguire

22:57 12 Mar 18

We just had Reptiles Alive come to our preschool and the kids loved it!! We had 4 shows over 2 days to accommodate all our children and everything went great! Caroline was very easy to work with and quick to respond to all my emails. She was our presenter too and was early each day and ready to go when the kids arrived. She really geared her show towards our audience (2-5yr olds) and had them laughing and answering her questions and touching the animals. It was perfect… we would definitely book them again!!read more

Lauren Dolinski

Lauren Dolinski

20:47 01 Mar 18

We booked Reptiles Alive for our son’s 7th birthday party. Miss Rachel put on an amazing show for the 20 kids we had over. The highlight was when my son and I had the chance to hold a long and surprisingly heavy boa constrictor named Sunflower. The show was both educational and fun for the kids, and it kept them captivated for a full hour – priceless!!read more

Rick Jandrain

Rick Jandrain

01:53 06 Feb 18

Rachel is an awesome instructor and very good with many kids. The reptiles were fascinating. This was a great birthday party for my daughter and her second grade more

Robert McKeon

Robert McKeon

23:26 26 Feb 18

We invited Reptiles Alive for our birthday party. Ms. Rachel did a wonderful job to educate the kids about the fun facts of Reptiles and also kept them entertained and focused. It’s not a easy job facing a bunch of 7-year-old boys and 3-year-old preschoolers. We highly recommend Reptiles Alive show. It’s fun and full of knowledge!read more

Tianchan Niu

Tianchan Niu

22:09 17 Dec 17

We had Reptiles Alive join us for a country club event and they did an outstanding job! Ashley was amazing and so professional. She was very interactive with the children and played the role perfectly. We couldn’t have asked for a better experience!read more

Chelsea Barb

Chelsea Barb

20:20 28 Mar 18

We’ve been working with Reptiles Alive for the past 4 years now and they show up and show out every time. Everything from booking to the day of is efficient and friendly. At our past event, presenter Liz did 6 shows back to back for our campers, which is truly impressive and phenomenal. We will continue to work with Reptiles Alive for years to come and really appreciate the work and educating that they do!read more

Lydia Vanderbilt

Lydia Vanderbilt

21:09 05 Apr 18

Reptiles Alive gave an awesome show at our elementary school! The presenter was so much fun and really engaged the children. Very cool reptiles and a great interactive meet and greet at the end. The kids loved it!read more

Jonathan Grau

Jonathan Grau

14:52 07 Apr 18

I am in charge of grade level assemblies at our school and our 3rd grade has RA in for their Rain Forest show every year to reinforce the things they have learned about in class. This is my second year working with them and I have been absolutely thrilled with the interaction to book the event and with the presenters. They engage the kids and help make them a part of the show. I can’t say enough about this wonderful program and the amazing people that work more

Kim Painter

Kim Painter

23:32 07 Apr 18

We love this show at our preschool!! The kids have so much fun and learn a lot! They are very organized and always start on time. We have always had a wonderful experience with Reptiles Alive and can’t wait to have them back again!read more

Melissa Jones

Melissa Jones

15:06 20 Apr 18

Reptiles Alive LLC visited our 1st grade friends and did the “Reptiles Alive!” show. They exceeded all of our expectations and were excellent at keeping the students engaged. The students have talked about it for days after, even repeating some of the facts they have heard! I would highly recommend Reptiles Alive!read more

Brittney Gjorgjievski

Brittney Gjorgjievski

16:12 14 May 18

Reptiles Alive was a MAJOR hit at the Mattie Miracle Walk & Family Festival. Rachel was incredibly professional, engaging, and clearly loves what she does. She made the show and meet & greet fun for both kids and adults. Can’t wait to have Reptiles Alive back next year to our event. We received a lot of positive feedback from our guests and we were thrilled to see how well attended the show was at our event. Thank you Reptiles Alive!!!read more

Peter Brown

Peter Brown

01:58 22 May 18

Caroline did an awesome job for our kindergarten Reptiles Alive performance. She held their attention and told fun stories. The reptiles are so cool! Every time she introduced a new reptile, the kids were amazed. I recommend the “meet and greet” time as well. My students will never forget touching a boa constrictor! Thanks Reptiles Alive!read more

Michelle Baldwin

Michelle Baldwin

03:00 09 Jun 18

Reptiles Alive! came to our elementary school for a 3rd grade assembly. Nothing ruffles this organization — they can handle kids of all ages, big groups or small, and bring a *ton* of animals. They are engaging, age-appropriate and bring their own mic system so hearing is not a problem. I highly recommend the meet and greet more

Stacey Evers

Stacey Evers

19:25 22 Jun 18

The show was a success, we had around 20 kids between 5-12. Lizzard Liz was great, she was able to keep all of them really interested. The reptiles were amazing, she even brought a small alligator and a boa more

florencia behrensen

florencia behrensen

14:39 02 Jul 18

Caroline at Reptiles Alive! always gives us the best show! It is fun and informative with a variety of reptiles each time she comes. We LOVE Reptiles Alive at Happy Faces Daycare in Centreville, VA!read more

Jessica Roberts

Jessica Roberts

13:56 12 Jul 18

Amazing 5-year old birthday party- Everyone loved the party, especially the birthday boy, who got to be the star of the show (besides the critters). Liz was on time, prepared, AMAZING at answering kids’ and adults’ questions, incredible breadth of knowledge, so good with the kids and animals, made the party fun, arrived on time, totally professional and courteous and an amazing ambassador of animals and representative of Reptiles Alive. We got to meet a few great snakes, a small alligator, a boa constrictor(!), tree frog, bearded dragon, gecko, and more

Stacey R

Stacey R

12:55 30 Jul 18

This organization is great! They have a wide varieties of different shows that appeal to all types of audiences. The educators are very gentle with the animals and engaging with the students. Our educator, Caroline, was awesome! She spoke to the children in different voices, was very interactive, creative, and fun. The kids laughed and loved it. I also really liked the additional education that they provided us, as they told us about the origin of the animals that they were showing. It was also really nice to hear that not only the animals have big, safe, appropriate homes, but also that a great deal of their animals are rescues. I would highly recommend this show and we will definitely be booking them again in the future!read more

Mandi Ellis

Mandi Ellis

13:05 08 Aug 18

Had Reptile Alive for my son’s 5th birthday in October. The party was in Maryland. Paid the travel fee and the animals were there on time. The presenter was so nice et patient to my kids and his friends. She provided a lot of information and interacted very well with the crowd. She went beyond the show time and made sure my son had a good party. He loved it!! Loved the fact that he could hold most of the animals and that she even had some tasks for him!! I was very proud and I will recommend this company!! It was an awesome show!! Thank you!read more

Linda Nana

Linda Nana

14:55 11 Oct 18

Perfect birthday party for my son who loves snakes and reptiles of all kinds. Liz was engaging, enthusiastic and made the birthday boy feel super special. All the kids had a blast!read more

Hina Ullah

Hina Ullah

22:26 22 Oct 18

We had Reptiles Alive perform at my son’s 7th birthday party. It was a great show. Tony did a fantastic job relating to the kids, maintaining the right energy level and imparting knowledge as he displayed the animals. Additionally, it was just the right length for the age group. I’d highly recommend Reptiles Alive for an more

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15:04 03 Dec 18