Mountains, monsoons and mosquitoes: here are the highlights from amphibian biologist Dr Jodi Rowley's diary of her recent field trip to Central Vietnam. She was on the hunt for new and rare species of frogs...
For several hours after we woke up, we took photographs of the amphibians that we had captured last night. We then settled into a familiar routine of carefully documenting and preserving the scientific specimens- weighing the frogs, swabbing their skin (so that we can test if they have the amphibian disease chytridiomycosis), taking DNA samples, and finally, preserving scientific specimens. For each animal, we carefully record all the data in small waterproof notebooks.
After a meal of fried rice in the late afternoon (a really nice change from steamed rice!), we head back out, searching a stream a little further away from the hut. Not surprisingly, the amphibians at that stream are pretty much the same as the nearest stream, however, I’m more than happy - a type of frog that I’m slightly obsessed with is really common here (small, brown frogs in the genus Leptolalax- two of which are in the image above)!
I spend most of the night recording the unique call of the tiny species and documenting the type of microenvironments it occurs in (mostly along the banks of medium-sized, rocky streams).
Interested in why I do what I do? Read more here.