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In this instalment of In the Field, we’re taking a peek at the research of Patrick Kleeman and Gary Fellers of the US Geological Survey.
WHERE: Primarily in Pt. Reyes and Yosemite National Park
WHY: They are looking for possible causes of the decline of amphibian populations in Northern California. The study is intended to be a long-term look at how breeding periods may change over time, possibly due to changes in climate.
HOW: Patrick and Gary are looking at vocalizations of frogs and toads to better understand their breeding habits and ecology.
WHAT THEY USED: Among their arsenal of research tools, the two had Wildlife Acoustics Song Meters and hydrophones. In specific, they used:
The SM2+ units also had hydrophones attached to record red-legged frog vocalizations both above and below water.
The microphones and hydrophones allowed the team to compare the frequency and nature of the calls above versus below water.
WHAT THEY’VE SEEN SO FAR: