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Back to the Klein Swartberg

20 June 2019

Winter Outings listening for frogs

Those of you with long enough blog memories will recall Debra Stark, and her work on the Rough Moss Frog (Arthroleptella rugosa) on the Klein Swartberg near Caledon (see blog post here). Debra's work was to assess the entire population of Rough Moss Frogs, a feat only possible as they occur there and nowhere else. Debra's work is now in press as a chapter in a book (see Stark et al here), but the frogs continue to call every winter on the mountain.

As one of the projects for Alessandra to learn the aSCR technique (see here), we decided that another estimate of how A. rugosa are doing on the Klein Swartberg was in order. So today we set out to explore the mountain again.

The march of pines over the mountain has been horrific since we were last there. And that's not all. In this picture below you'll see eucalyptus, pines and hakea all taking over the mountainside, with just a small amount of fynbos visible.

The numbers of frogs we heard were probably the lowest on any trip that I've made. A combination of poor winter rains and invading alien species drinking up all of the ground water. We'll be back soon assessing the total population again.

  aSCR  Frogs  Lab

Welcome Alessandra

04 June 2019

Welcome to Alessandra

The MeaseyLab welcomes Alessandra Maria Bissantini, who starts her 6 month visit to Stellenbosch today!

Alessandra comes from the lab of Leonardo Vignoli at Tre University, Roma. She plans to work on aSCR methodology while here in Stellenbosch, adding to our monitoring of Arthroleptella lightfooti on the Cape peninsula and A. rugosa on the Klein Swartberg near Caledon.

  aSCR  Frogs  Lab

Congratulations Jennica!

16 May 2019

Congratulations Jennica!

Jennica Poongavanan just received her marks back from her MSc dissertation, to find that she's passed with a distinction!

You may remember that Jennica was working on the data from Marike's aSCR project. Marike defended her MSc in March last year (see blog post here). But Jennica carried on working to place all of that data into a model that could predict the presence of the Peninsula Moss Frog, Arthroleptella lightfooti

Jennica's thesis was supervised by Res Altwegg, and co-supervised by Ian Durbach and myself.

Poongavanan, J. (2019) Modelling the range-wide density patterns of the Arthroleptella lightfooti using acoustic monitoring data. MSc thesis. University of Cape Town. 

  aSCR  Frogs  Lab

African Acoustics is as easy as ABC

06 December 2018

The African Bioacoustics Community's first ever meeting: ABC

It was a fatastic full week of revealing and fascinating talks on ecological acoustics. The event had lots of representation of aSCR.

I got to show my animation video of how aSCR locates frog calls. If you haven't seen it yet, it's worth a look:

Posters:

Kearns, R., Louw, M., Turner, A., Slingsby, J., Altwegg, R. Borches, D., Stevenson, B.C. & Measey, J. No more singin’ in the rain? As acoustic assessment of changing calling densities of the Cape peninsula moss frog (Athroleptella lightfooti). African Bioacoustics Community Conference, UCT December 2018.

Poongavanan, J., Altwegg, R., Durbach, I. & Measey, J. Modelling range-wide density patters of Lightfoot’s Moss Frog (Athroleptella lightfooti) using acoustic monitoring data: Do the same factors affect occurrence and density? African Bioacoustics Community Conference, UCT December 2018.

Talks:

Poongavanan, J., Altwegg, R., Durbach, I. & Measey, J. Modelling range-wide density patters of Lightfoot’s Moss Frog (Athroleptella lightfooti) using acoustic monitoring data: Do the same factors affect occurrence and density? African Bioacoustics Community Conference, UCT December 2018

Altwegg, R., Measey, J., Borches, D. & Stevenson, B. Estimating density, occupancy and species richness from acoustic data. African Bioacoustics Community Conference, UCT December 2018

Measey, J., Stevenson, B., Scott, T., Altwegg, R. & Borches, D. Counting chirps: acoustic monitoring of cryptic frogs. African Bioacoustics Community Conference, UCT December 2018.

 

  aSCR  Lab  meetings

Talk on invasions at UFRGS

11 May 2018

A talk to the Department of Zoology at Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, Brazil

It was a pleasure to address an enthusiastic group of zoologists in their weekly seminar slot. My host, Prof Marcio Borges-Martins, was a post doc at PUCRS when I worked there in 2001. Now he runs a herpetology group at the university with lots of exciting projects. I think my presentation may have just tipped over the hour long allocated slot, but thanks to you all for sticking with it!

Talking to a bunch of Brazilians about South African amphibian diversity is tough, but I hope I convinced them that there's lots of interesting stuff going on at the CIB in Stellenbosch University.

Title: "South African frogs: invaders and invaded."

  aSCR  Frogs  Lab  meetings  Xenopus
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