Big news! Apparently a researcher at James Madison University has isolated a bacteria that may combat and inoculate against the chytrid fungus. This fungus is contributing greatly to the decline of amphibians worldwide, and it is also the reason why I need to swab the toads when I catch them. Combating the fungus has hitherto been considered unlikely. Good luck to him! Here is a link if you are interested in reading more.
Also, today I accidentally kicked a duck in the head. I was looking for frogs in some marshy grass and as I was walking I hit something small and alive with my boot. It was a duck that was hiding. I stared at it for a while and it pretend not to exist. Seeing how frightened and helpless it was, I really ALMOST reached down to pick it up. I wanted to take it home. I rationalized this by telling myself that my boot-strike had permanently damaged its brain. I decided against capturing it when I came around to the fact that it would never treat me with respect. When I stepped back a little, it ran away and flapped its wings frantically, expressing its desire to not be my pet/food.
Later on, as I was walking to a pond I stepped over a clump of grass and heard the telltale rattle of a pit viper (Crotalus viridis viridis (the prairie rattlesnake)). Hearing this, I leaped a few feet away and spun around to see if it was going to strike me, but it was just a dead flower that had some rattly seeds in it.
5 years ago