samedi 18 août 2018

Amphibians in the dry summer

When temperatures exceed 40 C° in the heart of the dry Alentejano summer, we don't immediately think about amphibians. Yet, this summer has given us the opportunity to come across four species at the farm, out of the 10 that we have had the chance to observe so far. Some of them take advantage of the irrigation and mulching of our fruit tree basis. It was the first time that I got the chance to observe mature individuals of Western Spadefoot (Pelobates cultripes, above) - we had identified tadpoles earlier this year. Incredible eye, and unexpected back legs. And then, while mulching the fruit tree basis with straw at the horta, I found a small Iberian painted frog (Discoglossus galganoi, below), that we had never observed at the farm so far.

Add to this a few Natterjack toads (Epidalea calamita), the most observed amphibian at the farm, and the delicate mediterranean tree frog (Hyla meridionalis, below), and you get the perfect summer that any farming herpetologist can dream of!

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