Shawn scanning for
We also saw plenty of the common birds of the coast, but we missed all of my other main goals - the Arctic and Roseate terns in the area, and the two salt sparrows - Seaside and Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed. We just hit the right places at the wrong time of day/tide, but those mistakes led us to sit around scanning for seabirds and spotting the shearwaters.
Willet (Tringa semipalmata)tried last year with no luck, but this year we did even worse and saw but a single species of herp... the Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana).
At a drying-up pond we discovered approximately a bajillion metamorph bullfrogs and dead tadpoles. I decided to take some panorama shots of the whole pond and attempt to get an exact count of them all - yes, I'm that strange. Here is my stitched-together panorama of the pond. I had to split it into two photos because I couldn't make them any wider:
In case you can't see, there are swarms of little metamorphs and dead tadpoles everywhere:
Here are my marked up panoramas:
I counted a total of 3817 bullfrogs, of which 1166 (30.5%) were alive, the rest were dead. I believe the live count to be accurate, although the dead count is a little less accurate because the bodies were stacked like cordwood. Basically this total is a very conservative underestimate, because I don't know how deep the piles of dead tadpoles were, and I missed portions of the pond in my pictures.
Here's a short, bad video of me walking around the pond:
I need to find something better to do with my time now. Who else can get to say they individually counted 3817 frogs?
One final find in the pine barrens was this dying moth. Anyone have an ID?