After several years of drought, the Panhandle of Texas is actually above its normal average precipitation for this time of year. This has farmers, ranchers, and your average citizens quite pleased. But none more so than the Panhandle’s amphibians. When it rains, they get to emerge from the depths of the soil and make their way to a temporary water source like a playa, flooded field, or even a ditch. Andrew Carrano and I traveled to Carson County on the night of the 16th to look and listen for amphibians following several days of rain. Things started a little slowly but the activity and the noise from thousands of frogs calling was deafening – in a delightful sort of way. We found 4 species of frogs and heard several others. I will include a few photographs below. As beautiful as these animals are, they pale in comparison to standing in the middle of nowhere, listening to them sing for prospective mates. The late night was well worth the lack of sleep. It was yet another of those magical moments in the outdoors that I enjoy so much. I have spent much of my life in the outdoors and yet I am continually surprised by the spectacles that unfold before me. New adventures and experiences seem to be waiting for me on almost every trip to the field. I wish each of you these “moments” of your own. Get outside and look and listen for them.
Frog chorus Carson County Click this link for a Wav file of the chorus
New Mexico spadefoot
Great Plains toad