Unisexual Ambystoma

Unisexual Ambystoma

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Field Herpetology at the Southwest Research Station (Part 1)

We are three days through the 2013 Field Herpetology course at the Southwest Research Station. Whew, what a whirlwind this course is for the second year in a row. We have students from all over the country: college students, retired doctors, government contractors, and environmental consultants. 

I've been busy tweeting some of our activities, but need a place to show you some of the photos of the class at work and the animals we are finding. So here ya go.

A handsome Greater Earless Lizard (Cophosaurus texanus):

Dr. Carol Simon gives a seminar on the natural history of the Chiricahua Mountains:

My main man Dr. Steve Mullin describing the sexual differences between kingsnakes:

Here is a group of endangered Chiricahua Leopard Frogs (Lithobates chiricaheunsis):

Here is Matt Holding demonstrating to the field herpetology students and local residents how scientists safely transport and restrain venomous snakes:

Dr. Emily Taylor and Matt Holding implant a radio transmitter in a Black-tailed Rattlesnake (Crotalus molossus):

My favorite rattlesnake: The Rock Rattlesnake (C. lepidus)!

A really nice find from night driving was a pair of Desert Kingsnakes (Lampropeltis splendida). She was no doubt cruising around looking for a nice rattlesnake meal. 

One of our first field trips was to Granite Gap, an area in Arizona know for having both a beautiful community of cactus and a thriving population of Gila Monsters (Heloderma suspectum).

And here is the star of the show. Worth all of the heavy hiking, for sure.

Gila Monster relaxing center-middle.

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