Herps of the field 2013

Considering how much time we spent in the field, and that one of my field assistants was by natural inclination a herpetologist, we found surprisingly few herps (reptiles and amphibians) this summer.

Pacific treefrog (subspecies: Sierran treefrog)

 This guy comes in brown or green. The two morphs look very different from each other:

Brown morph

Brown morph
Photo by M. LaBarbera

"Green" morph (I think he looks more golden)

Green morph

One of the brown morphs hid in our tarp and accidentally came back with us to Berkeley, but we kept him alive and brought him back out on our next trip.


Photo by M. LaBarbera

The green morphs were beautiful and variable. One was genuinely green, while another (the one in the photo above, on my finger) looked as though he was covered in gold leaf.


The greener one

The greener one again

The greener one again

The gold one

The gold one

Western fence lizard


Photo by M. LaBarbera

Photo by M. LaBarbera

Alligator lizard


The alligator lizard that we caught last year bit us too. This guy was really hanging on, though.


Jeremy with his key field equipment: binocs, GPS, and self-attaching alligator lizard.

Garter snake

No big gopher snakes this year, just this cute little guy.


6 thoughts on “Herps of the field 2013

  1. Enjoyed the post as well–the creatures look relatively non-blemished. Hoping for fewer 6–and 8–leg frogs. I am sure it is a wait and see game?

    • Hopefully these guys are relatively safe from the contaminants that mess up development, since they’re fairly high in elevation and get their water from clean snow-melt. I’m more worried about chytridiomycosis, the fungus that is wiping out amphibians all over, including in nearby high-elevation Yosemite. Finding a live healthy frog anywhere is a small miracle these days.

      I also hope there are fewer extra-legged frogs in the future though – especially since they’re generally found near humans, which has disturbing implications for our health.

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