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Herpetofauna: Season by Season Compiled by the Davidson College Herpetology Laboratory Eastern Hognose Snake Green Tree Frog Photos by J.D. Willson, K.

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Presentation on theme: "Herpetofauna: Season by Season Compiled by the Davidson College Herpetology Laboratory Eastern Hognose Snake Green Tree Frog Photos by J.D. Willson, K."— Presentation transcript:

1 Herpetofauna: Season by Season Compiled by the Davidson College Herpetology Laboratory Eastern Hognose Snake Green Tree Frog Photos by J.D. Willson, K Cecala, M.E. Dorcas, Pierson Hill, A. Heupel, Eric Stein, Wayne Van Devender, Tom Luhring, John White

2 What do amphibians and reptiles do during the winter? Some Hibernate Some Hibernate Spend part of the cold season in an inactive state Spend part of the cold season in an inactive state Who Hibernates? Who Hibernates? Snakes Snakes Turtles Turtles Frogs Frogs Salamanders Salamanders Common Garter Snake Eastern Box Turtle

3 Why hibernate? Protection from cold Protection from cold Less food resources Less food resources Low energy requirements Low energy requirements Eastern Mud Turtle Bullfrog Worm Snake

4 Where do they hibernate? Frogs: Bottom of ponds, under leaves, burrow under ground Frogs: Bottom of ponds, under leaves, burrow under ground Snakes: Alone or in groups Snakes: Alone or in groups Use holes, burrows, termite mounds, cracks in rock walls, etc. Use holes, burrows, termite mounds, cracks in rock walls, etc. Turtles: Burrow into dirt or mud Turtles: Burrow into dirt or mud Salamanders: Under logs, leaves or in burrows Salamanders: Under logs, leaves or in burrows Ringneck Snakes Marbled Salamander

5 But some species are active in winter Frogs can be winter breeders Frogs can be winter breeders Spring Peeper Spring Peeper Call on warmer, wetter nights and during the day starting in January Call on warmer, wetter nights and during the day starting in January Stream Salamanders can be active Stream Salamanders can be active Water temps can be warmer than air Water temps can be warmer than air Dusky Salamander Dusky Salamander Very common and can be found year round Very common and can be found year round Spring Peeper calling Dusky Salamander

6 Spring means breeding season! Many Frogs breed Many Frogs breed Pickerel Frog, Southern Leopard Frog, Green Tree Frog etc. Pickerel Frog, Southern Leopard Frog, Green Tree Frog etc. Salamanders breed Salamanders breed Reptiles come out of hibernation and breed Reptiles come out of hibernation and breed Southern Leopard Frog Egg Mass Southern Leopard Frog Glossy Crayfish Snake

7 Bull Frog Common in ponds and lakes Common in ponds and lakes Males call after heavy rains Males call after heavy rains Largest frog in the NC Piedmont area Largest frog in the NC Piedmont area What do they eat? What do they eat?

8 Life cycle of a frog Upland Chorus FrogEgg Mass Cricket Frog calling Cricket Frog River Frog Metamorph Pine Woods Tree Frog Tadpole

9 Spotted Salamanders Wetland salamanders Wetland salamanders Breed in temporary ponds and wetlands Breed in temporary ponds and wetlands Warm early spring rains bring many salamanders to the ponds Warm early spring rains bring many salamanders to the ponds Lay 200 eggs! Lay 200 eggs!

10 Eastern Hognose Snake Mate in Spring Mate in Spring Lays eggs in June or July Lays eggs in June or July Eggs hatch in 2 months and look just like smaller adults Eggs hatch in 2 months and look just like smaller adults Hognose Snakes have the upturned nose to dig for their favorite food… toads! Hognose Snakes have the upturned nose to dig for their favorite food… toads!

11 Many reptiles and amphibians are active in the summer! Summer is the warmest season Summer is the warmest season Sun provides warmth Sun provides warmth Other animals provide food Other animals provide food Some frogs are still breeding Some frogs are still breeding Bullfrogs, Spadefoot toads, Grey Tree Frogs Bullfrogs, Spadefoot toads, Grey Tree Frogs Reptiles are most active Reptiles are most active Eastern King Snake Spadefoot Toads Grey Tree Frog

12 Worm Snake Very common and abundant Very common and abundant Lays eggs in early summer Lays eggs in early summer Hatch in late summer Hatch in late summer Usually found when digging or under logs or mulch Usually found when digging or under logs or mulch

13 Black Rat Snake One of the BIGGEST snakes in the U.S. One of the BIGGEST snakes in the U.S. Largest are over 8 feet Largest are over 8 feet Live near humans Live near humans Non-venomous and non-threatening Non-venomous and non-threatening Active during the day Active during the day Eat rats, birds, and squirrels Eat rats, birds, and squirrels How do they kill and eat their prey? How do they kill and eat their prey? Squeeze prey to death by constricting it and then swallow it whole Squeeze prey to death by constricting it and then swallow it whole

14 Box Turtle Common residents of the woods in the Southeastern U.S. Common residents of the woods in the Southeastern U.S. Males have red eyes, females have brown eyes Males have red eyes, females have brown eyes Eat a variety of plants and animals Eat a variety of plants and animals Live for a very long time – for 50 years or more! Live for a very long time – for 50 years or more! Box turtles

15 In fall some salamanders breed Marbled Salamanders Marbled Salamanders Females lay eggs in areas that become puddles when it rains Females lay eggs in areas that become puddles when it rains Guard eggs until they get covered by water and hatch Guard eggs until they get covered by water and hatch Give juvenile salamanders a head start on growing so they can be bigger than other salamanders in the spring! Give juvenile salamanders a head start on growing so they can be bigger than other salamanders in the spring! Marbled Salamanders

16 Snakes are most abundant in the fall! Snakes are more common in the fall than in any other season Snakes are more common in the fall than in any other season Most snakes are born between July and September Most snakes are born between July and September Many baby snakes are around and going to find their first meals Many baby snakes are around and going to find their first meals Adults move around looking for good places to hibernate Adults move around looking for good places to hibernate Ringneck Snake Juvenile Black Rat Snake

17 The year ends… and starts over again In the fall many amphibians and reptiles find their homes to hibernate for the winter. In the fall many amphibians and reptiles find their homes to hibernate for the winter. And then the whole process starts over again! And then the whole process starts over again! Smooth Earth SnakeFowlers ToadGreen Anole

18 Any Questions? Spring Salamander


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