Herpetofauna Project: About

Press Coverage:

NBC News Article “Social Media Could Help Save Species on the Verge of Extinction”

Press Democrat News Article “Montgomery High Students Join Climate Change Research Project”

Publications:

  • The Use of Citizen Science Smartphone Technology in Herpetofauna Monitoring (expected publication: January 2018)

Awards:

  • Sonoma State University Science Symposium 2014: “Most Innovative Poster” Award
  • Santa Rosa City School District, MHS 2012: “Most Engaging Curriculum” Award

Past Presentations:

About the Research:

This research seeks to determine the impacts of microgeographic features and changing seasonal climate variables on the phenology of local herpetological species in San Francisco North Bay protected areas which are deemed critical to protect for conservation purposes.

This research also creates and implements a long-term herpetofauna survey protocol while supporting the development of methods to apply citizen science monitoring efforts. These two project sites provide substantial opportunity to establish a baseline herpetofaunal phenology data set while simultaneously incorporating existing and developing programs to support longer-term monitoring efforts. Herpetofauna data has been collected since February 2014 and will continue to be collected to establish baseline data.

Powered by coffee, apple crumb and blueberry muffins, the Sonoma State University Biology Club gets ready for a good workout in the name of science (December 2013).

Distributing 108 – 2’X4′ coverboards at two different sites within Fairfield Osborn Preserve on Sonoma Mountain is not a job for wimps.

Realizing the wheel chart is useless on the steep and narrow trails, the coverboards are hauled up on our back, on our head, or however possible.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dropping off coverboards at frozen Kelly Pond. Pfew!

An undergraduate researcher participating in this project finds an Ensatina near the Fairfield Osborn Preserve Education Center.

 

Herpetofauna Project coverboard labels inform the public about the research project while minimizing coverboard disturbance.

Herpetofauna Project coverboard labels inform non-participants about the research project while minimizing coverboard disturbance.

A mouse runs from underneath a pile of coverboards at Pepperwood' Preserve's Turtle Pond parking area.

A rodent runs from underneath a pile of coverboards stored at Pepperwood Preserve’s Turtle Pond parking area.

Jared and Aaron setting up a transect at Turtle Pond.

High school student researchers setting up a transect at Pepperwood Preserve. January 5, 2014.

Mary and Sam setting up a transect at Turtle Pond.

More high school student researchers setting up a transect at Pepperwood Preserve. January 5, 2014.

Redwood Pond transects.

Naturalist “Curious George” and the amazing IB high school group. Newly set Redwood Pond transects are in the background.

Just a friendly Jerusalem Cricket under an ancient coverboard at Double Ponds, Pepperwood Preserve. Not only are they not true crickets, they are not native to Jerusalem. These nocturnal insects feed primarily on dead organic matter but can also eat other insects.

Just a friendly Jerusalem Cricket under an ancient coverboard at Double Ponds, Pepperwood Preserve. Not only are they not true crickets, they are not native to Jerusalem. These nocturnal insects feed primarily on dead organic matter but can also eat other insects.

Finally some cold rain and wind to break up this terrible drought. Not everyone was lucky enough to remember their snow goggles. Feb. 2, 2014.

Dr Derek Girman, SSU Biology Club members and other SSU undergraduate students power through cold rain and wind in the middle of a terrible drought. Not everyone was lucky enough to remember their snow goggles.
Feb. 2, 2014.

Red-bellied Newt at Pepperwood Preserve. This species (unlike the other two Taricha species) tends to avoid coverboards.

Migrating Red-bellied Newts at Pepperwood Preserve. Feb. 27, 2014.

Migrating Red-bellied Newts at Pepperwood Preserve. Feb. 27, 2014.

Mating California Newts.

California Newt “newt ball”

Arboreal Salamander.

Snake Photo Bomb

Snake Photo Bomb!

Sonoma State University has a Naturalist Internship Program where undergraduate students learn to lead public hikes and share knowledge about the the university-owed Fairfield Osborn Preserve (FOP). During the Spring of 2014, twenty-two students participated in the Citizen Science Training at the FOP Environmental Education Center.

Sonoma State University has a Naturalist Internship Program where undergraduate students learn to lead public hikes and share knowledge about the university-owed Fairfield Osborn Preserve. During the Spring of 2014, twenty-two students participated in the Citizen Science Training at the FOP Environmental Education Center.

Dicamptodon ensatus is a climate-change indicator species normally not found under coverboards. This one may have taken advantage of a recent nest of a nursing deer mouse and her young recently found under the same coverboard.

Dicamptodon ensatus is a climate-change indicator species normally not found under coverboards. However, this one has taken advantage of prey commonly associated with coverboards: deer mice and her new offspring.

 

Julianne, a research intern with Sonoma State University visits coverboards during the first rain of fall 2015.

Julianne Bradbury, a research intern with Sonoma State University visits coverboards during the first rain of fall 2015.

 

 

 

HerpetofaunaProjectOrientation2015

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Participants get friendly with a fast-moving Arboreal Salamander and curled-up California Slender Salamander which Pepperwood Preserve Technician, Celeste Dodge finds near the Education Center. Herpetofauna Project Orientation, December 2015.

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Janet, an SSU undergraduate student documents two separate amphibian observations using her smartphone with the iNaturalist Android application.

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Makayla, another SSU undergraduate students uses her smartphone to document herpetofauna underneath a coverboard.

 

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Molly and Julianne get photogenic at the top of Sonoma Mountain.

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Speckled Black Salamander – First one ever observed within Pepperwood Preserve. February 2016.

iNaturalist Black Salamander Screen Shot

SSU undergraduate Eric Hardy uses citizen science smart phone technology to document this amazing observation of Black Salamander. Julianne Bradbury, SSU undergraduate Research Assistant Intern partnered with Eric for this coverboard survey.

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Conner Cimmiyotti, SSU biology undergraduate students continues collecting herpetofauna data for the 2016-2017 season.

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Conner enjoys a magical moment with the most commonly found anuran in Sonoma County, the Sierran Treefrog.

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2 responses to “Herpetofauna Project: About

  1. It is so cool to see your progress here!

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