As I was watching TV I heard some toads in the distance and decided to see if I can get a photo of them calling, instead I ended up finding a toad calling from the pool. The pool is full of chlorine which is toxic to animals with semi-permeable skin so I rinsed him off with some clean water and sent him on his way away from the pool.
I cant seam to go anywhere without running into wildlife, today I went for a walk through a large park in Toronto, hoping to see an invasive Red Eared Slider as I have yet to get a decent photo of one. Instead I saw numerous Green Frogs and a friendly little Midland Painted Turtle. Finding wild herptiles in the middle of the GTA just goes to show that Dr. Malcolm was right; "Life finds a way".
The night I got back from the Thousand Islands region I got a message from my friend Kenny asking if I wanted to go out looking for tree frogs which I of course wanted to do so we went out in the dead of night in a field looking for herps. At first we found no sign of frogs but did however find some cover which we flipped and found a garter that was probably sound asleep before we found him. we then walked along a creek and sadly found a dead snapping turtle though we heard the tree frogs in the distance so made our way into a swamp. In the swamp we found the frog but as Kenny was taking photos it decided it would much rather sit on my camera lens which it quickly achieved. After aiming him back onto the branch we got some more shots before he wanted to see what my iPod was and in one jump had acquainted himself with it... people in the herp community often complain about people handling and touching wild herps but what if the herps touch us instead?
Last night I got back from a great trip to the Thousand Islands region of Southern Ontario with Matt and Clinton. There I saw a large amount of reptiles, amphibians and birds.
Today we did not go herping but instead spent the day educating people on reptile and amphibians and conservation at the Thousand Island's "Salamander Saturday". This was the first one of the year and Matt showed up with some of this Salamanders including the adorable Tiger Salamander and I was there with Matt's Snapping Turtle; Bowser. We were outside all day and during that time I had a chance to spot a few birds in the area.
Today was filled with herping with everything from a giant Garter Snake to a plethora of salamanders, Milk Snakes, Tanagers, an old haggard Snapping Turtle without any eyes and the Smooth Green Snake. The Smooth Green Snake is a common snake but rarely seen due to its amazing camouflage. Its camouflage was apparent when we moved it off the road and it disappeared into the long grass.
Today we headed to variety of areas but the most prosperous of these areas was filled with turtles and snakes. We found two young turtles of different species (Midland Painted and Northern Map), a big old Eastern Milk Snake and some friendly Water Snakes. Water Snakes have been given a bad reputation as a aggressive snake that bites. In reality anything with a mouth has the ability to bite and animals will only bite if they feel threatened, feel their young are threatened or believe you to be food so if you see a Water Snake or any type of snake remember they only bite because they are afraid you are going to harm it.
Today we spent the morning doing a salamander show at a local school and then went out herping but all we found were some frogs and a toad. At least we found some herps so our efforts were not in vein.
Today we checked out a location with few herp records and found many different species including all manor of frogs, two species of snake and some Northern Two-Lined Salamanders. Next we headed to a spot we know to contain large amounts of Lead-Backed Salamanders.
On the way back to Peterborough we stopped at one spot that had no records of any salamander species, we of course took this as a challenge and found a Red Eft and five Blue-Spotted Salamanders. This week has been a great one with a lifer, many different species and of course a great time with Clinton and Matt.
I just got back from a hike to a large park in Peterborough. While there I saw lots of herps such as many Green Frogs, a baby Snapping Turtle, an Eastern Garter Snake and an American Toad.
The following is a brief description of the day to day events for a more detailed description check out the PDF file at the bottom of the post.
This was the first day we got to Pelee Island, as we set up camp we found a little toad then headed out to look for snakes then salamanders.
What a great first day we had, we checked out some spots and found my first Lake Erie Water Snake, in another spot we checkout out we were mortified to find a bunch of snakes stuck to the glue on some tiles. We rescued as many as we could including a few large spiders. This just shows that one has to always be aware of how they impact the natural world as many animals such as snakes could die as a result. we then put the tiles out in the sun for the glue to dry up.
Today the weather was not the best with overcast and rain so today was primarily salamanders but we also found some snakes and a Turkey nest.
Today we saw a large variety of new species for me such as the Blanding's Turtle, Fox Snake and the Northern Map Turtle. The Map Turtle Specifically as according to a study done by CARCNET; Map Turtles are suppose to be extirpated from the island... well we proved that wrong.
Today was the last day on Pelee Island and on the way back we stopped to see the endangered Queen Snake while looking we also came across some frogs, a baby Snapping Turtle, some Red Efts and some mating American Toads with eggs. Overall it was a great trip and I hope many more will come.
I spent the last two days at my grandmother's place where I found a large amount of common wildlife along with a visit to my Aunt and Uncle's to see their new puppy and to play with my turtle; Hammond.
I'm Mac Marzolini and I created this blog for a variety of reasons, the first of course is to open a window into what is happening in my life (cause my grandmother reads this), but also to help myself catalogue some of my favorite photos from my many adventures.