Category Archives: Episode Post

Episode 60: A Conversation with Noah Fields (NKF Herping)



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Sixty!  I hope all of you remain safe and healthy out there as we move into spring here in the northern hemisphere.

As always I want to thank all of the patrons of the show – I appreciate your support, there are expenses associated with every entertainment channel, and you really do keep things rolling along.  And if you are listening and would like to kick in a few bucks and become a patron of the show, you can do that easy-peasy via Patreon, just go to patreon dot com slash somuchpingle and somuchpingle is all one word.  You can also make one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo, just drop me an email to somuchpingle at gmail dot com for more details.

I have another related request – if you enjoy the show, please take a minute to leave a rating on whatever podcatcher you use, and if you have a couple minutes please consider posting a review.  Both of those actions go a long way to promote the show and to help new people discover So Much Pingle.  And for those of you who have done these things already, thank you very much.

Thanks to the folks who have responded to my request for weird/unusual/spooky stories from the field, and I still need a few more so if you’re sitting on something like that, please get in touch.  And as you’ve heard in the intro for this episode, we’ll be scheduling an AMA show for the near future, so if you have questions for the host of the show please send them in via the show email which is somuchpingle@gmail.com.  Thanks in advance!

This week’s guest is Noah Fields, the host of the popular NKF Herping channel on YouTube, where he has built up quite a following with his content, which takes viewers along into the field in search of amphibians and reptiles..  Noah is someone I’ve been wanting to talk with since the show’s beginning, and after a fun day in the field near Atlanta, Georgia, we sat down at a picnic table and recorded the interview.  I also got to make a guest appearance in one of Noah’s videos and that was a lot of fun.  In addition to NKF Herping, Noah is also on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Thanks for coming on the show, Noah!  So much fun.  And thanks for listening everyone! And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers! Mike


Episode 59: Asclepius Snakebite Foundation with Drs. Brandehoff and Folt



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Nine!  I hope all of you remain safe and healthy out there.  Spring has finally sprung here in central Illinois, and we’ve had a nice run of warm and sunny days. My furnace isn’t running and we’ve had the windows open, there’s a nice breeze and I can hear the birds chirping as I put these notes together.

So the frog call teaser before the intro is in honor of World Frog Day, which today is, and a happy WFD to all frogs everywhere. Those calls were recorded this past Friday night here in central Illinois.  It had been raining for most of the day and into the night, so I met up with my buddy Justin Michels and we visited a few ponds over in the Illinois River country, in search of the elusive Illinois Chorus Frog, Pseudacris illinoensis.  We did not see any, but we did hear one lone male calling, which you can hear in the teaser.  And there were plenty of peepers and regular chorus frogs calling and we also observed four tiger salamanders as well.  A pretty good night.

Now before we get to the show notes portion of the show notes, I want to take a minute to thank all of the show’s patrons, including our newest Patreon supporter, Will McManus. Thank you, Will!  Much appreciated!  And thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty-plus episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

My guests this week are two physicians, Dr. Nick Brandehoff and Dr. Jason Folt, representing the Asclepius Snakebite Foundation.  The ASF is a 501c3 non-profit organization, dedicated to reversing the outcomes of venomous snakebites, and they are currently working in a number of countries in Africa.  It seems like most of the people I talk to are giving back in some way, and Nick and Jason and the other members of ASF are giving their time and expertise in a most meaningful way.

Be sure to check out the ASF’s home page – you can support this worth cause by direct donation and / or making a purchase from the ASF merch store.  Please help if you can and thanks in advance.  Also, you can follow the ASF on Facebook, and on Instagram as well.

Thank you Nick and Jason for coming on the show, and best of luck with the ASF project!  And thanks for listening everyone! And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, snakes on an inclined plane, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers! Mike

 

 


Episode 58: Origin Stories IV (Christoph Meyer and Susan Myers)



Christoph & Violeta Meyer (left) and Susan Myers (right)

Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Eight!  I hope all of you remain safe and healthy out there.  This show is a couple weeks late, thanks to some software issues and me jumping in the car and heading for Georgia and Florida for a week.  Thanks for your patience, and the good news is that I recorded another show while down in the southeast, which I will add to the queue of pending episodes.

Now before we get to this week’s episode, I want to thank the patrons of the show, including Dave Weber, our newest member who made a one-time contribution via PayPal.  Thanks Dave, and thank you for all of your kind comments, much appreciated.  I also want to thank JJ Apodaca for contributing via Patreon, thanks JJ and folks we will be hearing more from JJ soon, hint hint. And last but not least, a big shout out to Kevin, Ryan, and Hayley Urbanek for their one-time donation, and it was good to see you guys this past week.  The Urbaneks are a herping family and they get after it! And thank you as always to all of the people who support the show and help it roll forward.  To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

For this week’s episode we return once again to the Origin Stories format, and talk with two remarkable people – Christoph Meyer, and Susan Myers.  I talked with both of them in Peru, Christoph one day and Susan the next, so I have them in that order to maintain the continuity of some subjects we covered.  Just to paint the scene a little bit – we’re at the Santa Cruz field station, in a small cleared area in the rainforest, and which is situated on the edge of a small lagoon.  There are six huts, which we call tambos, scattered along the edge of the lagoon, and all of them have shaded back decks facing the water.  Our guests can sit on their decks and watch birds and caiman and occasionally an arapaima will break the surface of the lagoon.  The decks are a perfect spot for me to record interviews, especially on hot afternoons after lunch when there’s no pressing business at hand.

Thank you Christoph and Susan for talking with me out on the deck!  Folks, be sure to check out Christoph’s Facebook page for Wildlife Tours Peru. And you may consider a birding tour with Susan through Wings Birding Tours, and I will be watching and waiting for the printing of her latest writing project, The Bird Name Book!

Thanks for listening, everyone!  And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, herp name origins, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers! Mike


Episode 57: Alligator Snappers with Ben Stegenga



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Seven!  I hope all of you remain safe and healthy out there.  Like many of you out there, I am so ready for winter to be over, or at least, the return of temperatures above the freezing mark!  It’s been a rough one here in central Illinois.

Now before we get to the show, I want to take a minute to thank all of the show’s patrons!  I appreciate all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty-plus episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

My guest this week is Ben Stegenga, a biologist who lives and works in Georgia,  on a number of projects for the Orianne Society. Ben gets to work with some very charismatic herps, including indigo snakes and spotted turtles and of course the stars of this episode, Suwannee alligator snapping turtles. Ben is very busy with his field work, and I was lucky to get an interview with him just before his survey season ramped up and put him out of touch.

Thanks for coming on the show, Ben!  And folks, be sure to check out the Orianne Society and please consider supporting them and their worthy conservation efforts.  Additionally, check out this research update on the Suwannee Alligator Snapping Turtle on the Orianne website, written by Houston Chandler.

Thanks for listening, everyone!  And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, broomstick bite patterns, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers! Mike


Episode 56: Pioneer Daze with John Sullivan



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Six!  I hope all of you remain safe and healthy out there.  It’s Super Bowl Sunday, and I’m back in the US after a couple weeks of herping in Peru.  It was great to get back to the rain forest after a two year absence.  Our group had a great time and we saw some cool amphibians and reptiles, despite a rather dry start to the rainy season.

Now before we get to the show, I want to take a minute to thank all of the show’s patrons!  I appreciate all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty-plus episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

This week’s show features my long-time friend, John Sullivan.  John and I go way back to the mid nineteen nineties, when the internet was still new and shiny and we were pioneers of a sort. We were among a small group of early adopters when the world wide web was actually called the world wide web, and it was fun to talk with John about those days, and about the many places he’s traveled to in search of herps.  John’s one of the OG internet herpers, and his trip reports and herp photos from around the world can be found at WildHerps.com, be sure to check it out!  John has also posted on the original Field Herp Forum in the past, and for a good example, here’s his Thorny Devil Dreaming post – enjoy!

Thanks so much for coming on the show, John!  And thanks for listening, everyone!  And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, shingleback hat photos, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers! Mike


Episode 55: Whiskey Stones & Making Your Bones: An Open Discussion



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Five!  I hope all of you remain safe and healthy out there as we move into the new year.  Here ‘s the first episode of 2022 and I’m squeezing it in before I leave for Peru later this week.  I’m looking forward to returning to the rainforest after a two-year hiatus, and of course I will be recording some interviews while I’m down there.

Now before we get to the show, I want to take a minute to thank all of the show’s patrons!  I appreciate all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty-plus episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

For this week’s show I am joined by Justin Michels, Andy O’Connor, and Joshua Wallace for a free-floating, open format discussion – something a little different. I didn’t have any agenda for this discussion, and really I didn’t want one going in, so I didn’t know what we would be talking about.  Kind of a different format for the show and I had to edit a bit for continuity and for people talking over each other, and to remove a few expletives.  Just a few.

Thanks to Josh, Andy, and Justin for coming on the show, and thanks for listening everyone!  Also, Hollywood Squares frame courtesy of ‘FromEquestria2LA’. And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, monkey horror stories, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers! Mike


Episode 54: Paul-Erik Bakland and the Herpetology Club



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Four!  I hope all of you remain safe and healthy out there, and I wish you the best of this holiday season and a Happy New Year.  I’m putting this together on New Year’s Eve, so this is the last show of the year. 2022 is looking good, and just to give you an update I have a couple recorded episodes in the edit process, and a half dozen interviews that I classify as “agreed to but not yet scheduled”, so January looks to be a busy month. And I’m hoping to record more episodes from Peru when I return there in a few weeks. And of course, I’m just looking forward to getting back to Peru after almost a two-year hiatus.

Now before we get to the show, I want to take a minute to thank all of the show’s patrons, including our newest Patreon supporter, Kam Delahoz. Thank you, Kam!  Much appreciated!  And thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty-plus episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

One more thank you to all of the folks who have reached out to me about the show – I appreciate your comments and suggestions, and your ideas for guests, and so forth.  Feedback is important and it keeps me from feeling like I’m operating in a giant bubble.  Feel free to drop me an email.

Our guest this week is Paul-Erik Bakland.  Paul-Erik teaches high school in the Chattanooga Tennessee area, and he has a master’s degree in the biological sciences from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. So Paul-Erik and I are friends on social media and we know each other a little bit, and I happened to see a post he made about the herpetology club that he started at the high school where he teaches.  I knew I wanted to hear more about the Herpetology Club, and of course we talked about other things as well.

Thanks for coming on the show, Paul-Erik, and thanks for listening everyone! And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, the optimal number of strings on a banjo, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers! Mike

 


Episode 53: Tony Daly-Crews and the Rattlesnake Conservancy



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Three!  Things are good here in central Illinois, and I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there.  I wish you safe travels if you are journeying for the upcoming Christmas holiday season.

Patrons!  I want to give a shout-out to new Patreon member Ben Stegenga!  Thank you Ben, much appreciated!  And thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty-plus episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

Calendars – if you listened to the Bob is Back episode a few weeks back and then bought a calendar from Bob Fersuon,, I want to say thank you very much! Bob broke last year’s record for calendar orders, by more than three hundred! He received over 1100 calendar orders and as most of you know, all of the proceeds go to preserving rainforest habitat for herps and birds and jaguars and so forth. Great work, Bob, and thanks again everyone who participated..

Our guest this week is Tony Daly-Crews. I was on a conference call a few weeks ago with Tony and some other folks, and he was representing the Rattlesnake Conservancy. And while we were talking a little bell went ding somewhere in my brain, and at the end of the call I asked Tony if he would come on the show and talk about the Rattlesnake Conservancy and he graciously said yes. I knew a little but not a lot about this non-profit organization, so I learned quite a bit from my conversation with Tony, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.  And folks, be sure to check out the Rattlesnake Conservancy webpage and you can also follow them on Facebook and Instagram. You can also buy some merch and/or make a donation to support the organization ( I just did! ).

Thanks for coming on the show, Tony, and thanks for listening everyone!  And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike

 


Episode 52: Fun with Dick and Jake (and Patti)



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty Two!  Things are good here in central Illinois, and I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there.  Safe travels if you are journeying for the Thanksgiving holiday this week.

Patrons!  I want to give a shout-out to new Patreon member Alicia Ballard!  Thank you Alicia, much appreciated!  And thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

Now let’s get to this week’s episode. I made a trip to Florida in October, ostensibly to do some herping, and I had a great time with that, but I also scheduled an interview while I was down there, and so I spent one very fun evening with Dick Bartlett and his wife Patti, along with Jake Scott. Now if you’ve spent any time at all in the world of amphibians and reptiles, you know about Dick Bartlett, and many of you have at least one of the many books put out by Dick and Patti over the years.

While I was dreaming up this podcast back in 2019, I knew I wanted to get Dick and Patti on the show as guests, and I wanted to get Jake involved as well, since he and Dick travel a lot together and I felt the three of them would play off each other during the conversation. I think you’ll agree that my intuition was spot-on in that regard. Sitting at the kitchen table and talking herps with Dick and Patti and Jake for a couple hours was an amazing experience, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

Thanks for coming on the show Dick, Patti and Jake, it was fun talking with all of you!  And thanks for listening everyone!  And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, how to tell if you are a placental lizard, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike

 


Episode 51: Bob is Back! Another Conversation with Bob Ferguson



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Fifty One!  Things are good here in central Illinois, and I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there. It’s good to be back, I’ve been a bit busy over the past few weeks, first there was my usual fall visit to Snake Road, which for me at this point is a chance to see old friends and make some new ones. After that I headed down to Florida to do a little herping, and  I managed to get some cool lifers, including Blue-striped Ribbons and Blue-striped Garters, which I had only previously seen DORs. Oh, and my first swamp snake Liodytes pygaea, which got me more than a little excited. I also got to observe a couple Florida softshells foraging in shallow water, and I got some nice photos of that. Elevated boardwalks can be so good for turtle watching. I also got to see several Florida scrub lizards, Sceloporus woodi. There were also Suwannee cooters and gopher tortoises and corn snakes and rat snakes and an Eastern Diamondback, so a pretty good trip, and of course I also recorded some material for the show and I can’t wait to get that out to you all.

Patrons!  I want to give a shout-out to new Patreon member Sal Scibetta!  Thank you Sal, much appreciated!  And thanks to Michael Moffat, who increased his monthly contribution – thanks Michael!  And thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going and to reach fifty episodes!. To others in the listening audience, if you like the show, please consider supporting it via the So Much Pingle Patreon page. You can also support the show via one-time contributions via PayPal or Venmo (please contact me via email to somuchpingle@gmail.com).

I’m very happy to have Bob Ferguson back on the show, many of you will recall that Bob was featured on Episode 7 way back in the day. So I brought Bob back on to talk about his calendar project which I think is amazing. If you know Bob even a little, you’re aware he’s a very passionate person, with a lot of energy. Bob’s been producing and selling calendars for ten years now and he’s raising a ton of dough for some worthwhile causes that support herps and other wildlife, and I’m just in awe of what he’s accomplished with it.

Getting Calendars – you can contact Bob directly via social media, or you can visit his Fascinature Etsy shop for easy-peasy ordering.  If you use the Etsy option, there’s a coupon code for 5 dollars off a calendar, and that code is PINGLE5. If you order two calendars, use the code PINGLE10 for five bucks off each. Three calendars, PINGLE15, and if you want to order more than three, contact Bob and he’ll give you the details on some bulk discounts and remember folks, all the proceeds go to a good cause.

Thanks for coming on the show Bob, it was fun talking with you again!  And thanks for listening everyone!  And as always, please keep the comments and suggestions coming, and please take time to rate the show on your podcast platform! The show email is somuchpingle@gmail.com, and there’s also a So Much Pingle group on Facebook, for discussion, comments, feedback, suggestions, herp confessions, how to tell if you are a placental lizard, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike