Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Frog Surveys

Would you like to take a survey? Ok, so we didnt have survey forms we asked the frogs to fill out, we listened to see how many different frogs we could hear. Finally, after three weeks of attempting to go out to conduct our frog survey, there was actually little enough wind that we were able to go. So tromping off through the woods with 5 volunteers, a volunteer's husband, and a volunteer's grandson we arrived at the edge of our first pond. The air was still filled with the smell of smoke from a house fire earlier yesterday morning, rain was threatening but we were all excited because we were going to hear some frogs. In order to do the frog survey, you go to a designated site, stop, and listen for frogs for five minutes. Then you record all the wonderful frog sounds that you heard. Starting out, although not overly chatty, we heard chorus frogs. Listening closely, a picked out a spring peeper or two in the mix. And then a few more chorus frogs. We proceeded to stop number two. If you really listened closely you could hear a chorus frog singing solo off in the distance somewhere (not at the pond we were at). Then the rain came. About 3 minutes in to our second stop we gave up because we couldnt hear anything but the rain on the leaves. Stop number three. We were able to sit in a covered pavilion for this one. Again, distant chorus frogs. Not another peep. We saw no owls, beaver, bats or other nighttime critters that we usually see when we go out at night. They were smarter than we were and avoiding the rain! Anyway, after having to delay this trip three weeks, we are now only two weeks away from our second month survey. Maybe next time a few more frogs will greet us.
Needless to say, I'm tired this morning. After all, frog listening cannot begin until 30 minutes after sunset (although yesterday I am sure they were noisier at noon!), it takes us about 1 1/2 hours to complete our sites, and so no I'm tired. Tonight I will be working late. I am preparing out Kids Club (7 to 13 year olds) to present Dr. Suess's The Lorax as a puppet show at the end of the month. Which reminds me, I need a funnel to take to work.....

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