Saturday, February 5, 2011

Bowra Station - Nightly Frog Bonanza

What a night :-) I had set up camp few meters from the local "swamp" and I did not have to move much to be able to take photos of the inhabitants. As night fell I was surrounded by the chorus of a million frogs and they were all way too busy finding love to care about me running around snapping a few photos.

With the help of the "Frogs of Australia" website and some in-field guidance by Todd Burrows aka WildatHeart78 on Flickr I am pretty certain that the first photo of this blog post is my very first burrowing frog; Ornate Burrowing Frog, Platyplectrum ornatum. Burrowing frogs will as the name suggests burrow themselves underground if conditions above ground somehow are not in their favor, they will reemerge back to the surface when conditions have changed - often after rain. I have heard about this behavior before, and been amazed by the adaptability that makes it possible for these water loving creatures to inhabit some of the driest areas in the world.

Second photo is probably of a Broadpalmed Frog Litoria latopalmata and below here I think it is a Spotted Marsh Frog Limnodynastes tasmaniensis. The Frogs of Australia website has a feature, where you can first select by state and subsequently by region, which leaves you with a list of only 42 species to choose from when zooming in on the Outback and Gulf Country of Queensland - huge help for someone like me new to the wonderful world of identifying frogs :-)

Green Tree Frog Litoria caerulea is easily recognizable (above) and there is a chance that the little feller below is Broad-palmed Frog Litoria latopalmata, but I am not sure about that one. Final frog of the night (last frog photo) could very well be Wrinkled Toadlet Uperoleia rugosa, but as always help and suggestions are very welcome.

When I am sleeping in the bush, I always(!) either keep my boots inside the tent or I make sure I clean them out properly before attaching them to my feet in the morning. Early morning at Bowra I had jackpot :-) A frog had actually decided to spend the night in my boots - guess they were nicely warm and humid - a better fit for a frog than for my poor feet :-D The reason for my little morning ritual is not so much for the frogs, but rather to be sure that spiders and snakes have not taken a liking to my footwear during the night. Notice that the spider in the photo below is carrying spiderlings - probably a Wolf spider.


Aleisha and Simon Iremonger said...

Top effort Allan, it took me 4 years before I spotted my first Australian frog.

Jarrod said...

That is a fine effort. Just about makes it worth going to the outback in summer.

AGL said...

Thanks boys :-) Yeah, my frog-eyes are not normally that good either, but at Bowra you had to be careful not to step on those small critters - they were everywhere!
Are you proposing a trip Jarrod? :-)

Cheers Allan

Jarrod said...

I certainly will be up for a trip. Not sure when though.