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Re: what do monitor lizards monitor?
Monitor lizards are known in Arab countries as the Ouran or varan. Apparently
"Ouran" sounds a bit like a German word, (for "Sentry" I think) that was later
mis-translated into English as "Monitor". I don't have the exact text with me
(it's somewhere in Rodney Steel's "Living Dragons").
It's not just called "varan" in Arab countries, but here in Holland too. I
actually had a bit of a tough time exactly understand what kind of animal
was meant when I first encountered "monitor lizard" (I think that was in
the Dinosaur Heresies) until I somehow made/found the connection to the
group of animals I already knew as "varanen" ("varaan" if you're talking
about just one of the critters) in Dutch.