Berry Springs Preserve Herps of Texas report, 23Apr2016

Nine people came out for a special monitoring visit after 2 - 5 days of heavy rains, and we were rewarded with seven amphibian species !! One was only heard in the distance (American Bullfrog, CI = 1) and wasn't recorded, but one (Gray Treefrog, CI = 1) was a new species for this group at the park and recordings were collected. We also obtained photos and/or recordings of Rio Grande Leopard Frog (CI = 1), Gulf Coast Toad (CI = 3), Green Treefrog (CI = 3), Blanchard's Cricket Frog (CI = 3), and Great Plains Narrowmouth Toad (CI = 3).
When we arrived, we heard the Great Kiskadee that's been reported in the park, but we didn't see it. Then we walked to the spring at the head of the western-most slough (near the bird blind) and observed the Green Treefrogs, some Blanchard Cricket Frogs, and a Rio Grande Leopard Frog. While Sue Anderson stayed behind to record an odd-sounding frog there, the rest of us headed back through the primitive campsites along Berry Creek (at campsite #9, the water was rushing too loudly to hear anything at the creek edge, and we didn't see anything), but we did hear a Great Horned Owl south of the creek, and we saw a Rio Grande Leopard Frog and Gulf Coast Toad near the foot bridge and sidewalk by the playground.
By the time we got back to the parking lot area, Sue was already recording Great Plains Narrowmouth Toads at the base of the hill below the restrooms in a small pool next to the sidewalk. Beth Buncan heard a Gray Treefrog in the distance, so Reggie Leuty and I followed our ears all the way back to a small pond just northeast of improved camping area. There were Rio Grande Leopard Frogs, Gulf Coast Toads, Blanchard's Cricket Frogs, and Great Plains Narrowmouth Toads in the pond and one Gray Treefrog in a tree next to the pond. Beth joined us a few minutes later, and we tried to contact Sue via phone/text to let the rest of the group know where we were, but unfortunately she wasn't getting cell phone reception then. Finally, as we started heading back to our cars, we heard a pack of coyotes east of the park. What a night !
One thing we learned is that we should make an effort to monitor as soon as possible after heavy rains - the amphibian activity was notably less that night than it had been two nights earlier.
There was also a question about treefrogs and how the males calling in the trees near water find females and mate in the water. I found an AmphibiaWeb reference regarding Gray Treefrog breeding habitat which probably also applies to other treefrogs: "During the breeding season, eastern gray treefrogs are found calling near the edges of ponds, ephemeral wetlands and ditches, and from floating algae and emergent vegetation... At dusk, gray treefrogs may begin calling from high in the trees surrounding a pond. As the evening progresses, individuals move down the trees (sometimes calling along the way) until they reach lower branches or shrubs, or they continue until they reach the ground and move to a point usually within 1.5 m of the water’s edge... ...females may mate on the first day they arrive at the breeding pond. Both males and females have been observed to mate ≤ 3 times/breeding season... ...females have developing follicles throughout the breeding season, and production of later follicles is a function of foraging success. ...strong breeding pond philopatry [is reported]." So we should keep the improved camping area pond in mind the next time we get heavy rains.

Lähettänyt k_mccormack k_mccormack, 24. huhtikuuta 2016 17:34

Havainnot

Kuvat / Äänet

Mitä

Hyla cinerea

Havainnoija

k_mccormack

Päivämäärä

Huhtikuu 23, 2016 08:20 PM CDT

Kuvaus

Special monitoring visit after heavy rains 2 - 5 days earlier. At western-most slough spring near bird blind.

Kuvat / Äänet

Havainnoija

k_mccormack

Päivämäärä

Huhtikuu 23, 2016 09:30 PM CDT

Kuvaus

Special monitoring visit after heavy rains 2 - 5 days earlier. At pond northeast of improved camping area.

Kuvat / Äänet

Havainnoija

k_mccormack

Päivämäärä

Huhtikuu 23, 2016 09:30 PM CDT

Kuvaus

Special monitoring visit after heavy rains 2 - 5 days earlier. At pond northeast of improved camping area.

Kuvat / Äänet

Havainnoija

k_mccormack

Päivämäärä

Huhtikuu 23, 2016 09:30 PM CDT

Kuvaus

Special monitoring visit after heavy rains 2 - 5 days earlier. At pond northeast of improved camping area.

Kuvat / Äänet

Havainnoija

k_mccormack

Päivämäärä

Huhtikuu 23, 2016 09:30 PM CDT

Kuvaus

Special monitoring visit after heavy rains 2 - 5 days earlier. At pond northeast of improved camping area.

Kuvat / Äänet

Havainnoija

k_mccormack

Päivämäärä

Huhtikuu 23, 2016 09:30 PM CDT

Kuvaus

Special monitoring visit after heavy rains 2 - 5 days earlier. At pond northeast of improved camping area. Faint call heard at 1:55 of the -212231 recording, and at 1:18 of the -214110 recording.

Kommentit

Sue Anderson here. I have a recording of that American Bullfrog to add to the set, so we have independent evidence of that 'C1'.

Here is the American Bullfrog recording:
http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/3103412

I am just now (Mon, May 5) adding my recordings of those "odd sounding" calls we heard along the slough below the bird blind spring. I will post with an ask for ID help.

Here are (3) recordings of the "Unknown"
http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/3103496

Lähettänyt weathergaltx noin 6 vuotta sitten (Lippu)

Sandboa commented (http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/3103496):
"I believe that rattling is also a green treefrog. Males make different agonistic sounds towards each other."

Lähettänyt k_mccormack noin 6 vuotta sitten (Lippu)

Here is my posting of the Green Tree Frog: http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/3034427
and the recording of the Gray Tree Frog: http://www.inaturalist.org/observations/3074836

Lähettänyt bethd noin 6 vuotta sitten (Lippu)

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