Friday, March 1, 2013

Another Collection of Frogs from my Coles Creek Property

I went out tonight to see if I could get a few more shots of the toadlet that is very common on the property as I have few decent pictures of them. Before I went to the main area where they are found I decided to see if there were any Wilcox's Frogs out tonight. I was pleased to see they were out in larger numbers tonight. I saw about 15 different individuals tonight. Unfortunately I have only seen them in an area that is about 100 square meters that is between the two dams.

Wilcox's Frog

Another Wilcox's Frog

Another specimen of the same species

As I was heading to another part of the property where the Peron's Tree Frogs are found in decent numbers I saw this Eastern Dwarf Tree Frog. As always this time of year, they numbered thousands. I took a photo of this one as he was sitting on the branch below one of the Peron's Tree Frogs. I saw approximately 40 Peron's Tree Frogs and heard many more calling out. Their numbers have increased quite a lot over the last two years.

Eastern Dwarf Tree Frog

Peron's Tree Frog

While I was in taking the photos of the Peron's Tree Frogs I heard another frog calling out. To start with I thought it must have been a Peron's Tree Frog with a slight variation to its call. Within a few minutes I could hear 20 or so individuals calling out and they all sounded the same. After closer investigation I found that it was actually a different frog. They were Tyler's Tree Frogs! Their call has some similarities to the Peron's Tree Frogs but can be distinguished easily enough. This is the first time I can say I have definitely heard them on the property and definitely the first time I have seen them here. Actually it is the first time I have seen them anywhere and photographed them! I was very excited to find over 30 of them living amongst the Peron's Tree Frogs.

Tyler's Tree Frog

The same Tyler's Tree Frog from a different angle

The same Tyler's Tree Frog from below

Another Tyler's Tree Frog calling from the trunk of a sapling

The same Tyler's Tree Frog from above from a different angle

The Great barred Frogs were very vocal tonight. Probably the loudest I have heard them since I have lived here. Both areas in which they are found were very active tonight, with more individuals sighted than ever in just a small section of their area. I didn't stay in the area long to photograph them as they are out in large numbers regularly during the wet season. I began looking for the Tusked Frogs that I could faintly hear in between the calls of the Great Barred Frogs. I found the area where they were calling but I couldn't locate any to photograph. There were about 15 or so calling out tonight which is the most I have heard in one place. They are definitely one of the hardest frogs to locate due to the habitat in which they live. I didn't even try to move any debris to find them as I knew I couldn't get into that part of the creek. It looked shallow (looked like about 30 cm deep), but as soon as I took one step in I was up passed my waist in water and debris. Just managed to save my camera actually! I will try again in the coming days if the weather permits.

One of the many Great Barred Frogs

The Common Froglets were out in large numbers again tonight. I wanted to increase my chances of finding them so I went to the flooded front paddock out the front of the property. They would most likely number thousands in the front paddock alone. I hear them all the time and at times they can be deafening to the point where you can't stand in the area as the pitch hurts your ears if they all start calling at the same time. This is the first time I have got a decent photo of them. I have always been looking in the wrong place. I assumed that they were calling out just below the water or under the debris of leaves and sticks, mainly on the land. Tonight I happened to find one in the deeper water, about 40 cm deep, holding itself in the reeds by pushing itself against the reeds so they could support themselves. As soon as I bumped the reeds they fell in the water as they don't have any pads. I was very surprised to se them in the reeds like this at all. The more I looked the more I found doing the same thing. I found more than 20 doing this same thing in a matter of minutes. This could explain why I have seen so few of them but always heard them in large numbers. I have been looking in the wrong place! Unfortunately I couldn't hold the torch and the camera around the reeds to get a photo that was in focus. I did find one on the edge of the water in the leaves that I could photograph luckily.

 Common Froglet

Shot from above of a Common Froglet
As I was walking back to the house the Striped Marsh Frogs were making a tremendous noise all calling out together. When they call out one at a time it is quite a faint sound. When many hundreds, if not thousands all call out at once it is a different story. Below is just one of the culprits.

Striped Marsh Frog

After finding the Tyler's Tree Frogs on the property tonight that now takes the frog species on the property to a definite 22 that have been photographed and identified and there are  2 others that I have seen on a few occasions but am yet to photograph. I am sure that there are a few other calls that I hear from time to time also that I haven't identified as yet. It is very exciting to have so many frog species on the property, especially when about 14 of these are seen regularly during the wet season.

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