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Cecil Schwalbe, John Burnett  

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Frog research discussion, including unidentified voices and area ambiance.  

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Walking on boardwalk, gravel  

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American Bullfrog -- Lithobates catesbeianus 36:51 - 37:10 Play 36:51 - More
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Environmental Recording 36:40 - 40:42 Play 36:40 - More
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Buenos Aires NWR ambiance  

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Includes Rana catesbeiana vocalization  

frog/toad sp. -- Anura sp. 44:49 - 45:01 Play 44:49 - More
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"Release call"  

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Couch's Spadefoot -- Scaphiopus couchii 1:00:51 - 1:01:53 Play 1:00:51 - More
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"Release call"  

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NPR/NGS Radio Expeditions
18 Jul 2002

    Geography
  • United States
    Arizona
    Pima County
    Locality
  • Buenos Aires NWR
    Latitude/Longitude
  • 31.55   -111.54994
    Channels
  • Stereo
    Sampling Rate
  • 48kHz
    Bit Depth
  • 16-bit
    Recorders
    Microphones
    Accessories
    Equipment Note
  • Decoded MS stereo

NPR/NGS
RADIO EXPEDITIONS
Show: Arizona Frogs
Log of DAT #:1
Engineer: Bill Deputy
Date: Thursday July 18

Track 2
:15
A large truck pulling in

:29
FX - Car stat

:39 - :46
FX - Car pulling away

:51
ambi. - Crickets

1:09
Car pulling in

1:24
engine shut off

1:26
doors

1:34 C
cell phone in my pocket, it was tied in. (Car door slam) Well, Dennis, where are the rest of the troops, have you met Jessica?

1:41 D
Hi Jessica, how are you doing, I'm Dennis

1:44 J
Hi, I'm John

1:45 C
Nice to meet you. And here's the deputy - Bill

1:47
Yeah, he's got all kinds of stuff

1:50
Yeah, they're out there

1:51
Oh, there actually in the swamp? Oh I thought those were just a couple of wetbacks.
1:58
Later tonight.

2:00
yeah, actually this is such an avenue for illegal aliens coming across that in one of these ponds I told you we were drying ponds to kill bullfrogs we were afraid that we were afraid we would cause some human deaths, so we actually me big plastic tubs to pump some of the water into..

2:17
hi.. I'm john burnett, NPR

2:26
Hi, I'm Jessica. Here's Bill, he's recording.

2:33 C
We got a little bit of rain coming in.

2:35
Yeah, it looked like it rained here.

2:38
Could you hear the frogs?

2:39
Nah.. but we didn't walk that way, we figured we'd be walking that way shortly. W were just wandering aimlessly looking for stuff.

2:46
we stopped and tried to record the storm at one place and there were a few Mexicans going.. It feels good like we oughtta be sunken out tonight. It smells wet

3:00
it's humid

3:01
how much rain did you get here in the refuge you think?

3:03
none

3:05
over here we got some but not on the refuge itself.

3:10
this is the eastern edge of the refuge. It's just a little eastern finger.

Track 4
3:26
ambi- footsteps, a car passing by¿ mumbling

3:50
did you guys find any more ponds that had water in them that you knew before today?

3:56
last month¿ real deep¿

4:11
cecil do you end up doing most of your work at night?

4:14
on this project, well.. no, most of this one at night except that we're doing some assessments on the best way to capture tadpoles to see what species they are and most of that's daytime work. We are working with the toads and themselves, they're mostly active at night but the tadpoles we use daylight so we can see what we're doing.

4:47
quicker steps, almost to a jog

5:01
to a biologist, this next one.. so many things that are coming out, the amphibians, the reproductive ants and termites, everything comes out to feed on those, the scorpions are coming out.. (fades out)..

5:26
ambi - crickets, car

Track 6
5:39
vg - ambi - footsteps, voices

5:50
the photographs don't mix well with research, because you're always trying to get someplace, so I take vacation time someplace where I can take pictures instead of data.

6:14
where are we going now?

6:15
we're on aragoskus sienna, which is a part of the b.a. National wildlife refuge, near the town of iraguaoca Arizona, and we're walking to a place called little pond, and it's the sonly place where we have heard bullfrogs calling this particular summer, because this is the driest summer on record in the city of Tucson in the hundred plus years of existence, and the bullfrogs have just quit calling on other places o the refuge chart, we've been marking thing.. and we think because they're sensing this incredible drought and they're willing to make much of a reproductive adjustment on a year as dry as this one was, but the ones here have been calling so we're going over to see, and maybe record some sounds and get an idea of how many males might be calling

7:20
I think some people would be surprised that there are scientists studying frogs and toad sin the desert¿ because you think of this arid environment and you've got to go to a moist environment like a rainforest to do the best work on amphibians.

7:52
I totally agree with that, I didn't realize until I was a graduate student here quite a few years back when I was trying to look at the diversity of different types of animals and it's known that Arizona has a fantastic number of birds and reptiles, but I started looking at amphi, and it turns out that Arizona, known as a dry states, has 30% of all the frogs and toads in the united states.
8:23 JB
Why is that?

8:25 CS
it's because they have this cadre of desert adapted species, a bunch of the spadefoots and toads which we're going to be possibly seeing some tonight, and they have learned to adapt to these conditions, and they'll stay underground 10 months of the year, and when the rains start they will come out and do their breeding and feeding, dig back underground and wait until the next summer.

8:50 JB
so as we're walking along this path right now we're walking over the burrows of frogs and toads?

8:57 CS
Yes, in fact Dennis just actually caught one

9:04 JB
what are you holding in your hand?

9:05 CS
this is a Mexican spadefoot , the one that we heard calling when we were recording the sounds of the storm this is the one that sounds like you're running your fingers down the teeth of a pocket comb. And smell that, what do you think it smells like?

9:20 JB
fx - sniffing
an old cigarette
9:25
And old cigarette, But how about almonds, this is one of the spadefoots, you identify it by picking it up and sniffing it, not licking it, but sniffing it and if it smells like almonds that is characteristic of the Mexican spadefoot. This animal has already been out today, and it's not raining any more. Obviously we had a light rain before we got here but that's enough o bring these desert adapted toads and spadefoots out here, looking for a meal and if it rains harder they would have breeding aggregations, we hear a couple of them when we were recording the thunder. If you handle those you don't want to rub your eyes, and if you rub your nose you'll start sneezing. A lot of people think they're allergic, but actually it's a specific reaction to the toxin that they carry in their skin. One reason that these amphibians are so successful is that they have these antibiotics in their skin. Here's an animal that has to stay moist to stay alive, and these nes living in these environments - and what do you get when you have heat and moisture? You have molds and fungi growing. They use great polypeptides and chemicals in their skin to keep them from getting fungi and bacterial infections, you just don't find frogs or toads with sore because they deal with that kind of injury very very well.

11:08
are there predators out there in the desert that eat these amphibians?

11:13
there are. There's a lot of the snakes will eat them, some of the spadefoots that we find here occur further east in the sates, and I think the hog-nosed snake is a fog specialist, he has a specialized vertebrae that is used or pop toads. The defense mechanism that frog and toads use when they're grabbed by a predator is to inflate with air to make them too large to swallow. And so the hog nosed snake just starts swallowing it down and all the air goes out of the toad, kind of a neat little trick. Some of the toads are so toxic, the polypeptides, this chemical protection that they have against fungi and bacterial protections can also be used to deter predators. And the Colorado river toad is this great big toad that we might see as we're walking along, there ar several dog deaths every year fro m dogs that try to bite these toads, an they succumb. Once these toads get to the adult size¿

12:43 - 14:32
fx - boardwalk footsteps, crickets

14:32
ambi - walking on gravelly stuff, crickets

15:04 JB
so are all the amphibians surviving the drought okay?

15:07
Well we don't know, we don't have good numbers of.. any that went in.. one of the objectives, we have two projects going on here right now relative to amph on the refuge, and one is to look into the bullfrog, and introduced predator, and the effect it's having on native leopard frogs, and to see what we can do to help the leopard frog ,and the other is to learn and develop some methods of monitoring these desert spadefoots and toads, also we're in the process of trying to gather some baseline data on how any there are, we can answer that question better this tie next year, since we haven't tried to count the number of toads last year, we just don't know, so we'll see. When they've gotten good rains they seem to be in good numbers, and the same species that we expect to se ether is there, right now we don't see a problem but we just don't know.

16:20 - 16:28
barely barely audible sounds of a bullfrog

16:26 JB
we're being greeted

16:28
yes that is the American bullfrog, introduced into the western us as a potential game animal, or a food source for humans. You had no idea it would turn into the incredible predator on our native frogs, garter snakes, and turtle even. We've got data from studies on another refuge that indicates that it probably eliminated the chirca leopard frog and is now eliminating the Mexican garter snake. A lot of biologists didn't believe us at firs because they couldn't imagine a frog eliminating a garter snake, which are supposed to eat frogs, but they get so big that they can eat the adult male garter snake. We'll end up with a population of old female garter snakes with their tails chewed off

17:10 - 17:30
fx - bullfrogs

17:29
where are we now?

17:31
We're approaching little pond.. at Buenos Aires national wildlife refuge, and this is actually a famous bird watching in Arizona, there are hundreds of birds that come here and people come form all over the united states to come and watch them.

17:48
and this is perfect habitat for the American bullfrog?

17:54
a bullfrog, about he only requirement it really needs in the hot southwest is permanent water, and in this particular ponds for the large part for the bird watching capability which is perfect for the bullfrog, and they just are thriving here.

18:18
footsteps

18:55 JB
why is this bullfrog a problem to everything else that's alive here?

19:02
the bullfrog is only recently, in the last couple decades, only in the last couple of decades that we would come aware¿

(car)

19:33
we only recently have become aware of the problems the bullfrogs have been causing in the west. In the 1980s it was the first time in Arizona that the bullfrogs.. Wherever we found bullfrogs that we never found the native leopard frogs, and then we found that some of these garter snakes and mud turtles bounded in similar water ponds elsewhere were disappearing or declining where the bullfrogs occurred, since that time every state in the American west have had problems about bullfrogs coming in and eliminating the native species so it becomes a conservation problem for the national parks to maintain and preserve the native ecosystem.

20:30
tell me how amazing eating machines the American bullfrog is.

20:35
the bullfrog is one of the most amazing predators we've ever run in to for it's size, in Arizona in the last 15 years, we've found vertebrate class that occurs in southern Arizona we've found in bullfrog stomachs, frogs snakes lizards turtles mammals, rodents, bats, it's just amazing in southern Arizona the most common vertebrate stomachs is other bullfrogs. One of the ways that a bullfrog takes over an ecosystem, is that it doesn't need a native population to prey on necessarily, they can just cannibalize their own young and maintain extremely high population densities. The populations of bullfrogs of some of sour study sites in Arizona is 20 to 30 times the numbers of adult frogs there that they have an any population in native range of the bullfrog, so the bullfrog maintains itself on it's kids, basically.

21:49
so should we be hearing the sounds of more living things in this pond tonight, but has this bullfrog eaten it's neighbors?

22:01
basically here the aquatic frog that is native to this area, that was here historically is the chiracow leopard frog, but it hasn't been found in this part of the creek in over 20 years, and the Mexican garter snake used to occur here, and the Mexican garter snake has not been seen here for 25 years, we did catch one individual this past summer which tells us that there is some in the neighborhood but they are not able to maintain a population here, by spending some time her and some effort we are learning some effects of the bullfrog.

22:48
you have got a reputation as the bullfrog hit man of the west¿ why do you have it out for bullfrogs?

23:10
what have we got here?

23:18
it's the culprit..

23:21
normal sized?

23:23
it's a mall adult, probably about 250 grams, it's an adult male, in the male you can see the tympana on the eardrum in back of the eye it's always larger than the eye, the female they're always the same size.. and you can look at the, actually it doesn't have much of ad ark throat, probably yellow, usually they have a duskier through, in the daylight it may appear more yellow the headlights don't show it very well. But that and you also have these swollen black thumbs, and they use the thumbs to hold on to the females during mating, called amplexis. They just grab and hang on. Seasonally I put one of my phone machine messages, the rain is here, I'm in amplexis and I'm all thumbs.

25:04 JB
are bullfrogs this big of a problem elsewhere in the country, is it just the west? I haven't heard people complaining of bullfrogs.

25:14
the bullfrog back east in it's natural range is in equilibrium with the other animals in their ecosystem, and they have things like large water snakes, snapping turtles, raccoons, that keep a lot of the bullfrogs population in check. Actually largemouth bass and a lot of the sports fish of warmer climbs do a good job of keeping the number of young bullfrogs down and they like to eat young bullfrogs. But here in Arizona the bullfrog is not native, when humans moved the bullfrog west across and into the deserts, that's just the boost that the bullfrogs needed, so because it doesn't have any natural predators here and the native species in the West haven't evolved defensive mechanisms against the bullfrogs. They're just naïve and the bullfrogs just take advantage of that and snaps them off. There are many thing that makes the bullfrogs an incredible invasive organism. Because a single clutch of bullfrog eggs may number 20000, our native frogs may have 2 to 3 thousand, so that's a ten fold advantage just in the numbers of eggs, bullfrog tadpoles are so unpalatable that some fish will choose to starve to death if that's all you offer them. Yet the leopard frog tadpoles here are delicious to everything, so the bullfrog comes equipped with all these adaptations that make it a scourge when introduced into a new area. But back in the east, it ranges from Canada all the way to Florida, from the Atlantic coast to central New Mexico in it's native range, and it's not a problem there because the other species that prey on it keep it in check, it's another example of an exotic species, and we consider it an exotic species because it's natural range doesn't extend this far, and when you move a species not native into an area into an area that has certain characteristics like this bullfrog it can just take over and eliminate many of the native species, throughout the west, including up into Canada, Europe, it's in France, I went to Japan to visit a few¿ two summers ago, and the most common amphibian or reptile that we saw or heard in Japan was the American bullfrog. We heard the American bullfrog calling while we were in a loggerhead sea turtle nesting beach. So it's just an amazing machine, I get emails from central America and Europe every month on what they can do to solve their problem. And we're still trying to figure out what to do, it's not simple at all.

28:08
so in a way it's like the fire ant of the amphibian world

28:12
it's exactly.. the fire ant, the kudzu, the plant that's taking over the southeast, purple blue stripe, the plants and animals are leeching, they're coming in and taking over because the organisms there haven't learned how to deal with them. It's a huge problem

28:36 JB
but it's mostly a problem to conservationists, it's not a problem to home owners or city dwellers, is it?


23:42
well city dwellers probably not, a lot of people say, does this mean that life on the earth is going to collapse? No, it probably won't, but it means that the composition ecosystem will probably change. In fact I've dubbed this era that we're in the homogocene, the period in which you have all of these communities become the same, you'll have bullfrogs and English sparrows, brumgrasses, and you'll have all these things that they get along, they're good invasive species, and they'll still be producing biomass but whether or not the other species in that are can use that biomass remains to be seen, and that's why we're going into simpler ecosystems, not quite as divers, and from my perspective that' a little bit risky. The value of diversity, basically the genome, we haven't explored all the values that are there - medicines and things, the toads and things that we've talked about tonight, there's a lot of medical applications there, many parts of the rainforest that we haven't explored all those values yet.

30:12 JB
someone who is not familiar with the complexity of the problem you're describing would come out here in this warm humid night in the southern Arizona desert would hear the cricket, hear the bullfrogs, and would think 'listen to these wonderful pastoral sounds,' but when you as a biologist hear these sounds, what do you think?

30:35
I thought the same thing when I cam here, I actually grew up in Texas, where I hunted bullfrogs as a kid, loved to eat them, still do, but went I became an ecologist and started looking at the effect of invasive species - not just the bullfrog - but the cray fish is a predator that's being introduced here and it's also amphibious in that it can move across land at water and it's starting to get to be a problem here.

31:18
now that I know what it represents, I first got involved in the problems the bullfrog created was when I worked with Arizona game and fish back in the 1980's, and it was quite new concept and since then corresponding with most of the western states, we view it as a serious problem for native populations, I can't argue with people to say 'great, It's great to have some frogs here, id' rather have bullfrogs there than no frogs at all.'

31:57
is this the sound of the enemy?

31:58
this is the sound of the enemy. It's kind of ironic, here in Arizona the only frog that makes a chirp when it jumps into the pond is the bullfrog, just kind of a neat little sound, when it takes this little myeeck, I know it's the enemy, because the leopard frog would jump in there but they don't make a sound. And now whenever I hear the bullfrog, since I've heard it now in half a dozen countries when I've traveled around it's becoming quite pervasive, and it's difficult because the ability of the bullfrog to move across the land in the rainy season is legendary.

32:50
you believe this bullfrog can travel as far as seven miles?

32:55
we have data from out here at Buenos Aires, we believe that they move 6 to 7 miles over the course of the summer into the fall, we don't have.. that didn't come from marked frogs, we can't say this from moved from this point to another, but at the time we discovered that frog, there were no breeding populations of bullfrogs within 7 miles.

32:23
to 7 miles per summer.. that's a pretty incredible amount of hopping

33:31
it is. And that's in a summer season, actually even more astounding is the initial movements between ponds. What the bullfrogs do is hop from pond to pond, I think they can probably smell the ponds, not the water, but associated vegetation, and they go to them, and they can go as far as two miles in a night - and they went 3.1miles in a matter of a couple of weeks. The 6 to 7 miles is over a four month period, so it probably had to work it's way through several ponds, actually a fascination apart of the research now is to see how they get to different places and from different places, we're going to go out later tonight and try to measure some distances that we've marked form earlier this summer.

36:41 - 40:44
vg - ambi. Bullfrog calling, crickets

42:30
you can see the bullfrog over there, that big female, you see it out there?

42:34
oh yeah, you can see it's mouth and it's eyes

42:38
it's a female, you can see the white throat. What a cutie, that's a youngin'

43:18
ambi - frogs

43:35
they're waiting for something to move. Are you a fisherman? Do any topwater fishing, topwater lures? My dad caught 9 bullfrogs flipping this topwater lures, and you wiggle a little bit¿

44:23 - 44:36
ambi footsteps, frogs, weird noises

44:50
FX - release call

44:58
FX - release call

45:08
one of the ways we catch snakes, that was a release call, and most frogs have this call when they're captured, and if you hear that in the wild and one of your friends that have caught them, you look around quickly because a snake usually has caught the frog, and you've only got a few minutes to get it before the snake swallows the frog, and once it becomes muted you know the frog has been swallowed and continues to call, so really it's a fun way to catch snakes.

45:50 JB
and they all have the same markings? All over the world?

45:51
they're highly variable, some are leopardy looking, we've got bronze ones with no stripes.. I have a picture of a bright yellow one

46:05
it all adapts to it's surroundings?

46:09
it's not necessarily cryptive, it's in the genes. We're going to have a pop quiz, what gender is this?

46:17
well lets see, that would be a male? No wait. You said when it's larger than it's eye, it's a male

46:28
it's about the same size, a female

46:29
the tympana

46:30
the tympana, the eardrum. And the white throat, we saw that female out there staring at us, we could see the white throat - the males are yellow, and the yellow's not showing in our headlamps but it's a right yellow during the day. But that was pretty neat, that was kinda singing a song.

46:53
they don't squirm much

46:54
well that's because they're playing opossum.

46:56
oh is that it?

46:57
as soon as it knows when you don't have control, then all of a sudden it's gone

47:03
try it

47:04
ok

47:13
this one is being pretty passive

Track 14

47:26
trickling water

47:40
that skunk was pretty cute.

47:48 JG
what do you call that green stuff out there?

47:50
duckweed. It's kind of a cosmopolitan plant, especially in tropical¿

48:05- 48:50
quick footsteps, crickets, bullfrogs,

49:00
cars?

49:21
(off mic) because those desert animals don't move around much

JG + BD talking about sound

Track 17
50:15
ambi. Crickets, walking across boardwalk, barely audible mumbling

50:39
down at the bottom of the hill¿

50:45 - 51:
ambi, boardwalking¿ crickets, + talking off mic

52:29
ambi - walking on grass/gravel

(talk about walking, getting lost)

53:05 JB
a little different environment¿ (JG asks people to be quiet)

53:30 - 57:06
vg FX - very loud cricket, other crickets in bg

57:06
ambi - walking (passing vehicle at 59:00)

1:00:33
it's a male

1:00:34
it is a male. Patterns, he's out.. he just came out. You can still see the dirt on him still - the dirt on his head somewhere. He just came out of the ground somewhere.

1:00:48
ah they're just little holes in the ground

1:00:53
FX - release call

1:00:54
that's his release call. He just told me he's male, he's not going to have sex with me.

1:01:22 - 1:01:32
FX - release call

1:01:32
that's his release call, he's saying "you're making a mistake, buddy." They're pretty indiscriminate, they'll go for anything that's the right size, and that's why they use the release call.

1:01:48
you mean they'll grab anything of the right size and try to reproduce with it?

1:01:52
yeah, I've known guys like that.

1:01:59
so this would be a midnight snack for the bullfrog?

1:02:05
it's one of the few groups of animals that the toads and spadefoots don't like, because they have all those toxins., they've been found in their stomachs in low numbers. We didn't have any of them in our 8000 stomachs

1:02:22
is this is Colorado?

1:02:23
no, this is the caucha spadefoot. They're the ones that makes it for a year on a couple of meals of termites. The common name now is the caucha spadefoot, it used to be call the desert spadefoot - this is the most desert adapted amphibian we have in north America, this is the one that can go from an egg, through to a tadpole stage to a young little froglet in as little as ten days. What an advantage it is to be able to get out of the water so fast, especially if you're in a pond that's drying up. And so the ones that can't get out that fast become part of fertilizer for next years.

1:03:01
so we're going to see more of those tomorrow night

1:03:04
we'll see more tonight probably. Were going to be goin got these tanks looking for bullfrogs and we'll stop and identify all the species you'll see, and we'll hope, and if there's rain we'll hear them calling. And tomorrow we're going to chase storms to try and do that. We've got about 200 square miles we can cover with roads to get to if we get any rains in this sector, if not we can go to another corner of the state, out to the silver springs valley, and we'll just let the weather dictate where we'll go tomorrow. Ideally we'll get rain here enough that I'll cal out the volunteer.

1:03:50
don't the storms abate this time at night because it starts to cool off?

1:03:57
well see, there's almost no chance that we're gonna get a storm now. It all depends on the dynamic. If the cells already form, you can still get rain even if it's not driven by convection at night. There's enough mysticism to weather but that's the general pattern, you're right on. But we had an early morning shower, they mentioned it on the news today. Fish-hook barrel cactus, you see the way the needles are curved?

1:04:48
you got a lot of them here, there's a nice one - look at that.

1:04:58
yeah, it is¿ it's a big hefty one. There are a few swarrels out in the valley but mostly there's just grassland in the slightly higher elevations and a few deserts

1:05:13
walking

1:05:28
here's a female of the same species that you guys just heard calling, see how it's darker in color. All that dirt on the head, she just came out.

1:05:36
see they haven't had a good rain to wash off since they've been buried two feet in the ground. They're ready, she's heard enough to make her come up, but they haven't had that pouring rain.

1:05:50
good catch

1:05:52
not my first time

1:05:53
call him all state. Good hands!

1:06:05
ambi-fx on gravel

1:06:31
they're really out tonight

1:06:41
what's it like seeing a frog emerge from the ground?

1:06:48
it's almost never seen, we've simulated it. we actually let one bury in one night while we were photographing it, and they actually corkscrew themselves into the ground. They dig with these spades and they twist and they basically screw themselves into the ground and the next night we kinda made it rain and all of a sudden they kinda corkscrew themselves back out.

1:07:19
a spade foot..

1:07:23
some of the people, we'll actually show you the spade. Some of the toes have a spade too, so just the absence or presence of a spade doesn't mean a spade foot, it could be a toad, and there are other characters you use to tell them apart. Yeah, I hope we get a good rain tomorrow. But we've got a bullfrog that's rain dependent.. that's what made it a good thing to do tonight while we look for storms tomorrow. I think you ought to pain his mike so he could look like those skunks. That's what he probably saw and wanted to mate with it!

1:08:34
I just heard a coyote

1:08:41
who owned the dogs right over there? Were they dogs from the ranches, ..?

1:08:44
from the town. The town's right there

1:08:49
it sounded great

1:09:00
JB falls down

1:09:10
get your camera, we'll put that in my car.

(talk about anxiety, binoculars, channels)

Track 20

1:09:50
ambi. In a car, rattling of seats

1:10:04 JB
why don't you give me your names on tape?

1:10:07
I'm dennis seray

1:10:08
and I'm brent sygaphis

1:10:16 JB
so we'll know later on

1:10:30
car speeding up

1:10:43
well we're just hoping to get something cool, or even another species of toad

1:10:59
cellphone

1:13:00
(talk about car not being built for comfort or quiet.. back seat jokes)

1:13:29
cellphone

(talk about who's calling)

1:14:37
why don't you tell me what you're looking for?

1:14:39
we're just looking for anything on the road, we'd even e excited to see some cool mammals, like porcupines, skunks, bobcats crossing with the rain, we're really hoping to see some different snakes, like western diamondback, Mojave rattlesnake, they're real common out here, and also we're just looking for you guys have seen some of the desert amphibians out here, but we're trying to get a few more that you haven't seen yet. So we're just hoping for the best. You never know, sometimes dennis and I have seen a western diamondback, and we'd barely roll forward and we'd see another one, and then maybe a Mojave, and then there's nights were you just don't see anything, and the weather conditions could be exactly the same, or even more favorable, so we're just hoping for the best.

1:15:45
this stretch of road from airpocket junction tends to not have much on it because we go across this plateau through here - you don't get that much that goes across it, it's not like other sections of the road. So.. but you never know!

1:16:07 - 1:16:14
car still rattling around

1:16:14
dennis has spent a lot of his time up her so he knows a little bit more about what species we could come across, if you wanted to know that, I don't know¿

1:16:34
good car rattling/jumping noises

1:17:15
car quiets down

1:17:16
brent can you take down a mileage here in my book, so I can get a road mileage here for that snake.

1:17:28
I gotta find your page, hold on

1:17:34
798.3 movaca road, junction 286.

1:17:45
FX - walkie talkie noise

1:17:58
we're just getting a mileage, don't worry opie if you see something good you'll know!

1:18:02
FX - taking off again

1:18:17
so we just turned south on highway 286, and this runs all the way down the west side of the refuge here. This is where all of the bullfrog work was done.

1:18:46
off to the east it's mostly state trust, private, and ranch land. Some of these, there was a tank where last summer we drained it and removed all the bullfrogs and it's completely dried, so we're hoping for the best that they don't' come back, but they're close by so they could easily make it back there.

1:19:52
slows down a bit

1:20:11
slows down, but then speeds up again

1:20:13
alvareus? Yeah, an alvarius.. another blue alvarius

1:20:23
Colorado river toad..

1:20:38
FX - walkie talkie noise

1:20:38
(in response) yeah I saw it

1:20:40
did they stop for the transfer?

1:20:44
(walkie talkie)
did you guys want to see it?

1:20:45
Nah, that's okay.

1:20:47
they just caught a¿

1:20:50
(walkie talkie)
you guys can keep going

1:20:56
okay..

1:20:58
FX - speed up again

1:21:15
FX - slows down

1:21:17
Frog?

1:21:18
it's probably an alvarius, but I'll look

1:20:20
ask him?

1:20:25
is it an alvarius?

1:20:26
(wt)
yeah, it's an alvarius

1:20:28
FX - doors slam, vehicle starts again

1:22:04
FX - bit of rattle

1:22:16
FX - two cars pass by

1:23:08
FX - car slows down

1:23:19
FX - lots of rattling

1:23:25
so now we're headed west on a cattle ranch out here, and this is where I marked all these frogs at, so we're going to go see if we've found some frogs that have moved recently with the rains that we had a couple days ago.

1:23:45
jackrabbit..

1:24:17
oop oop oop!

1:24:21
that was the banner tailed kangaroo rat that we almost hit there.

1:24:25
they like to play chicken with us, we always lose, it's always a big mess.

1:24:38 - 1:24:54
FX - lots of rattling here

1:24:53
WT - what site are we going to?

1:24:56
repeat that

1:24:58
WT - what site are we going to?

1:25:00
shoot, we're going to shoot.

1:25:02
we're going to shoot, tank

1:25:13
WT¿??

1:27:17
you need to repeat

1:25:23
repeat

1:25:30
can you hear him?

1:25:31
nope, he's probably just joking with us. You know how it is. It was cecil..

1:25:58
oh snake snake snake! There's a snake on the road, hang on!

1:26:01
fx - car halts, doors slam, footsteps, car passes by

1:26:25
fx - walkie talkie

1:26:38
little rattler?

1:26:42
it's a western diamondback.

1:26:51
beeping

1:26:59
he's a Mojave. The younger¿

1:27:07
we haven't seen any small ones.. the juvenile's this years. (mumbling)

1:27:25
so is he venomous?

1:27:25
oh yeah, he's a nasty one. They're very toxic

1:27:29
they're quite aggressive, though he's being very placid.. you guys might want to get..

1:27:38
too small to work with tongs
1:27:40 - 1:27:57
talking off mic as they try to collect snake

1:27:57
they fly well!

1:28:20
walking closer to the car, footsteps, engine

1:28:37
my nose is all whoop

1:28:40
FX - door slamming all around

1:28:50
FX - car speeds up once again

1:29:45
so right now we're passing one of the tanks that dennis has marked how many years¿

1:29:49
I've marked this tank 3 years in a row, and we have a 86% recapture rate on this tank, so that means we have a pretty good idea of how many frogs are living there.

1:30:10
last year when we marked at this tank, not only was the tank full, but the sediment trap that goes along with it was full, and actually we only marked in the sediment trap and yet we're still seeing recaptures fro that. It's not only a small pool since it's been so dry out here.

1:30:40 -

1:32:02
fx - bouncing car

1:32:33
car slows down

1:32:42
car speeds up

END OF DAT

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