Tag Archives: amphibians

Episode 50: Herp Science Sunday with Dr. Alex Krohn



Hello everyone, I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there, and welcome to Episode Fifty!  Yay!  It feels good to make it to half-a-hundred shows.  It’s a nice milestone to reach!.  And this episode features another installment of Herp Science Sunday with Dr. Alex Krohn, and I’m very excited about that and I hope you are too.

Patrons!  I want to give a shout-out to Peter Berg for his one-time contribution.  Thanks Pete!  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 excited to put out another installment of Herp Science Sunday, as I received some encouraging feedback and comments about the first show Alex and I did.  Plus I just enjoy talking to Alex, his enthusiasm is contagious and I love hearing his perspective on all things herpetological.  We will be talking once again about two different papers, but the conversation also veers off on an unexpected and totally cool tangent and I will attempt to tie it all up in a neat and tidy package in the epilog after our conversation.

First paper up for discussion:

Bromeliad Sampling: A Passive Technique for Arboreal Amphibians across Ecosystems in the Neotropics
Yonatan Aguilar-Cruz, Marıa de los Angeles Arenas-Cruz, Leticia M. Ochoa-Ochoa, and Gerhard Zotz
Ichthyology & Herpetology 109, No. 1, 2021, 211–218

Second paper:

Frequency modulation of rattlesnake acoustic display affects acoustic distance perception in humans
Michael Forsthofer, Michael Schutte, Harald Luksch, Tobias Kohl, Lutz Wiegrebe, Boris P. Chagnaud
Current Biology 31, 1–6, October 11 2021

For this rattlesnake acoustics paper, be sure to check out the associated YouTube video that provides insight into how the experiments were run.

Bonus paper!

Homoplasy: The Result of Natural Selection, or Evidence of Design Limitations?
David B. Wake
The American Naturalist, Vol. 138, No. 3 (Sep., 1991), pp. 543-567
(see page 560 for miniaturization discussion)

You can get all three papers from the SciHub repository, or you can drop me an email and I will send you a PDF.

And as always, thanks for listening everyone!  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, how to see your own genome using this one weird trick, herp confessions, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike

 

 


Episode 49: Never Too Tired (To Talk About Rattlesnakes)



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Forty Nine!  Things are good here in central Illinois, and I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there. Here we go with another midweek episode because once again I will be out and about this weekend. A lot of folks say that May is THE month for finding amphibians and reptiles, here in the Northern Hemisphere. But I have to say that I am nearly as busy in October as I am in May, and I see herps in comparable numbers. So I have a big block of away-time coming up in mid-October so I will be working in new episodes as I can. And as always, I will be bringing my mobile recording rig on my journeys in order to talk with people, because those opportunities are too good to pass up. And I’m looking forward to some long hikes on warm October afternoons, and cool nights around a campfire. And I’m looking forward to seeing some old friends and maybe making some new ones.

Patrons!  Thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going. 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).

So this week’s show features another one of those rambling around-the-room discussions that I occasionally capture. And one was recorded this past June, in Mexico City. To be more precise, in a hotel next to the airport in Mexico City, and I had to do some fancy filtering to remove most of the sounds of jet engines taking off and landing. This was at the tail end of a herping adventure in Puebla and Veracruz, mostly Veracruz, and about half of our group had already flown home and the rest of us were waiting our turns. This was a long trip, two full weeks plus travel days, and everyone was very tired when I turned on the recorder. So you can tell from the show’s opening minutes that the energy level in the room was lower than low, but as the discussion progressed you can hear folks getting a little more animated about the subject material and their brains were getting fully engaged, just proving that many of us are never too tired to talk about rattlesnakes.

I want to thank Mack, Andy, John, Bryan, Tim, Armin, Andrew, Pat, and Max for pulling themselves up on one elbow and joining in the discussion.  And as always, thanks for listening everyone!  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 48: Sidenecks and Placental Lizards with Dr. James Van Dyke



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Forty Eight!  I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there.  We’re edging towards fall here and that means that a trip to southern Illinois is looming – time for another visit to Snake Road, to visit with friends and walk the road and maybe see a serpent or twenty.  I’m looking forward to it as I always do.

SMP Patrons!  I want to thank our latest Patreon member, Pearson McGovern!  Thank you so much for supporting the show, Pearson!  I also want to thank Tom Eles for his recent one-time PayPal contribution. Much appreciated, Pearson and Tom, nd thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going. And folks, 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 you to the continent of Australia, and Dr. James Van Dyke is our guest. Van as he likes to be called, is a Senior Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences at La Trobe University’s Wodonga Campus, in Victoria, Australia (Van’s professional page is here). Now some of you may remember Van from the old Field Herp Forum where his handle was VanAR. As Dr. Van Dyke he has been living, working, and studying in Australia since 2012, and he’s been involved with a number of very interesting projects, and I talked with him about sideneck turtles and placental lizards and a few other interesting topics.

Areas of interest connected to Van’s work with sideneck include the TurtleSat Community Mapping Project, off to a great start with over 10K turtles mapped to date, and the One Million Turtles community conservation program which seeks to involve local communities in releasing a million baby turtles into Southeast Australian river drainages each year.

Thanks Van for coming on the show!  It’s cool that we could have a conversation from opposite sides of the planet, and hopefully the world will get better soon and travel becomes a possibility 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


Episode 47: Deep Thoughts with Andrew DuBois



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Forty Seven!  I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there.  I’m back in SMP World Headquarters after a brief hiatus (AKA herping) in Mexico of all places.  I went down to Baja California with a group of folks and we dipped all the way down to the northern portions of Baja Sur, and I can now claim to have traveled every inch of Mexico’s highway one. I’m thinking there should be a patch or a merit badge for that. So a couple thousand miles in a little Chevy Spark and here’s a shout-out to Jake Scott for being an excellent companion in that tiny car’s close quarters. One step above a clown car and yet it only held two clowns and their luggage.

PATRONS:  I want to thank all of the show’s patrons who contribute to keep this show rolling.  It goes without saying that I appreciate each and every one of you.  And here together for the first time is a list of all the show’s supoorters to date: Justin Michels, Jason Jones of Herp MX, Smetlogik AKA Rob Kreutzer, Ryan Borgmann, Joshua Wallace, Jill Rials, Marty Whalin, Chris Smith, Dr. Emily Taylor, John Burris, Kamil Scepanski, Brandon Kong, Issac Chellman, Dr James van Dyke, Brandon Ballard, Mike Rochford, Josef Thompson, Dr. Alex Krohn, Matt Ratcliffe, Jeroen Speybroek, Bryan Hughes, Brandon Bourassa, Josh Holbrook, James McGhee, Michael Moffat, Andy O’Connor, Jake Scott, Deb Krohn, Duane McDermott, John Sullivan, Josh Emms, Justin Elden, Matt Cage, Patrick Connolly, Chris McMartin, Michael Cravenss, Ana Ware, Tim Warfel, David Burkart, Adam Cooner, Dr. Bill Peterman, Cynthia Samake, Paul-Erik Bakland, William Bone, Jeremiah Easter, Richard Legere, Tom Eles, Jeremy Schumacher, Neill Jones, Alec Gordon, Martin Habecker, Daniel Dye, Clint Henke, Ross Maynard, Nick Sobel, Moses Michelsohn, Myles Masterson, and Ben Genter. Now THAT is quite a list, and some of the coolest people I know. Thank you all.

Andrew DuBois is our featured guest for this episode.  Andrew and I have been friends for a number of years and we’ve been to a number of amazing herp spots across the planet in that time.  Andrew is a senior natural resources specialist (and a wildlife ecologist) with Jefferson County Open Space in Colorado and part of our conversation centered on the work he does there with leopard frogs, prairie rattlesnakes, and other interesting critters.  Microphone or not, I enjoy talking to Andrew, he is a deep thinker, and I always come away from our conversations having learned something new or seeing something from a different perspective.  Aside from collecting data and managing the herps and other flora and fauna that live on the 55K acres across JCOS, Andrew and other colleagues also engage with the general public who recreate on these lands, and I’ve included some related links, including Jefferson County Open Space Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.  Andrew also took part in a rattlesnake education video produced by JCOS which provides an excellent overview of the single species of rattlesnake that can be found within JCOS, how to tell it apart from harmless snakes, and where and under what conditions rattlesnakes might be encountered.  Very useful for Coloradans who may encounter snakes within JCOS.

Backpack ‘Clip Card’ mentioned in the show.

As always I enjoyed talking with Andrew, not only about the work he’s engaged in, but also about herpetofauna and herping as well.  You can find Andrew on Instagram and Twitter, his email is adubois@jeffco.us and his professional profile is on Weebly.

Thanks for coming on the show again, Andrew! 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 46: Training on Venomous with Joe Ehrenberger



Matt and Joe

Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Forty Six!  I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there. It’s the dog days of summer here at So Much Pingle world headquarters and the afternoons are plenty hot and humid. The flower garden still looks pretty good, but the tomato plants are scraggly and tired. But in my general area it’s also the time of year when female copperheads and rattlesnakes are close to giving birth. I got to see a couple gravid timber rattlesnakes last weekend while out with some friends, and the snakes looked ready to pop and I expect they will do so in just a few short weeks. And of course when gravid snakes are encountered, I prefer just to hang back and observe them without any real disturbance, just let them do their thing and I’m grateful just to see them.

SMP Patrons!  I want to thank our latest Patreon member, Benjamin Genter!  Thank you so much for supporting the show, Ben!  And thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going. And folks, 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 episode features a conversation with Joe Ehrenberger, and while the main thrust of the interview concerns the venomous snake training that Joe provides to first responders and other professionals, we talk about much, much more. Joe and I have been friends for quite a while, and we’ve shared some cool adventures over the years, including trips to Mexico and Cuba. Joe and his wife Kelly are new parents to a little cutie bug named Emma, and they are quite busy as you might imagine, so I was happy to get a little chunk of time with Joe for this interview. Joe has environmental consulting company out in the Denver area, and we talked about some of the projects the company is involved with, including one in particular. And there is a bonus guest appearance by Matt Cage, friend of the show and my Peruvian herping buddy. Matt works with Joe doing venomous snake training modules and so we’re getting two perspectives on that important work.

Thanks Joe and Matt for coming on the show!  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 best gloves for wrangling caterpillars, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike

 


Episode 45: Origin Stories III



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Forty Five!  I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there.  I myself have been a little bit under the weather and the show is about a week behind schedule, so thanks for your patience with regard to new episodes.

SMP Patrons!  I want to thank our latest Patreon member, Myles Masterson!  Thank you so much for supporting the show, Myles!  And thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going. 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 to the Origin Stories format, for which I’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback.  There are four segments featuring Maximiliano Monroy Sánchez, Brandon Curtis, Jeff Dragon, and Kyran Leeker.  I interviewed Max at the tail-end of a recent trip to Mexico, and I talked with Brandon and Jeff together at about the mid-point of that trip, in a small hotel precariously perched on the side of a mountain.  Kyran’s segment is a more formal interview, which was done more recently.  I hope you enjoy these four segments as much as I did!  And of course, we talk about much, much more than the central question of how everyone came to be interested in amphibians and reptiles….

Thank you Max, Brandon, Jeff, and Kyran, it was great to hang out and chat with you all, and to get your origin stories!  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 best gloves for wrangling caterpillars, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike


Episode 44: Human-Snake Interactions with Dr. Heather Bateman



Hello again, everyone, and welcome to Episode Forty Four!  I hope you all remain safe and healthy out there!  It’s hot, humid, and full-bore summer here at the SMP world headquarters, so I took a little time off yesterday for some creek walking and queen-snaking.  The cold water felt great and there were plenty of Nerodia sipedon and Regina septemvittata to observe.  I like the fact that when it’s miserably hot, I can change my game a little and still get some herp-time in.

Patrons!  Thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going. 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 guest is Dr. Heather Bateman, an associate professor at at Arizona State University’s College of Integrative Science and Arts, and a wildlife ecologist as well as an educator.  Heather is the recent co-author of the paper “Unwanted Residential Wildlife: Evaluating Social-Ecological Patterns for Snake Removals” published in Global Ecology and Conservation earlier this year  It’s an interesting paper and a little complicated, and I’m grateful to Dr. Bateman for unpacking the publication and breaking it down for me.  Also, ASU put together a short 3 min video that gives a little back story to the Bateman et al. paper – it’s very well done and it features Heather and Bryan Hughes and some cute buzztails, so be sure to check it out!

Thanks for coming on the show, Heather!  I thoroughly enjoyed our conversation and we also chatted about some of her other projects (she is a busy person!). And as always, thanks for listening everyone!  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 43: The Brothers Martineau



Hello again, everyone, and welcome to Episode Forty Three!  I hope you all remain safe and healthy as we move through July and into the peak of summer (sort of, it’s been very rainy and mild where I live for the past few weeks).

Patrons!  Thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going. 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 episode, I talked with Jeff and Berk Martineau from Mesa, Arizona, and I appreciate them giving me some of their time in the middle of peak herping season out their way. I recently got acquainted with these two herp enthusiasts, and I missed a chance to record with them in person earlier this spring (the wind in the desert was howling that night).

Berk and Jeff have a channel called ‘Catch It’ on YouTube, and we discussed how that got started, and how their content, style, and delivery have changed over time.  A healthy set of subscribers means that extra care must be taken with the show’s content and I appreciated our discussion about this, and the brothers’ thoughtful approach.  We also talked about field herping in various places and I really enjoyed their energy and enthusiasm.

The brothers are both on Instagram as @JB_Martineau (Berk) and @WJMartineau (Jeff), and be sure to check out their Catch It channel on YouTube.  Jeff also does some herp-related artwork in various media, including t-shirts and decals, so be sure to check that out, lots of awesome designs.

Thank you Jeff and Berk, really great to hang out and chat with you two!  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, MEMs, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike

 

 


Episode 41: Postcards from Paraguay



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Forty One!  It is the Memorial Day weekend here in the United States, and this weekend also marks the one year anniversary for the So Much Pingle podcast!  And that makes this episode the last of Season One!  Who knows where Season Two will take us?  It’s a mystery to me too.

Patrons!  I want to take the time to thank all of the folks who help to support the show, either through Patreon or other means – I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your generosity.  You really do keep this thing rolling.

I also want to thank all of my guests!  So many folks to thank for agreeing to come on the show and talk with me, it’s been a real pleasure talking with each and every one of you.  And also appreciate all of the folks who have taken the time to give me feedback about the show, and suggestions for topics and future guests.  Very important to me and to the show.

This episode comes to you from Paraguay, more precisely from the airport Holiday Inn in downtown Asunción, at the end of a difficult and challenging herp expedition.  I sat down with Devon, Tim, Jake, Dermot, Matt, and our new friend Jose to break down the experience, and thanks to all of those folks for their participation.  And I want to give a shout-out to Josh, Becca, and Rachel, we missed you!

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 correct lyrics for La Bamba, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike

 


Episode 40: Carrizo Campfire Tales



Hello everyone and welcome to Episode Forty!  I hope you all remain safe and healthy here in this fine month of May, the busiest of months for those of us in North America who enjoy getting out and seeing amphibians and reptiles. I just got back from a trip out west where John, Tim and I drove all over Nevada, California, Arizona and Utah, and we saw a bunch of cool herps, including a dozen or so species that were new to me.  As per usual I bring my mobile recording studio along, in the hopes of recording something interesting, and this trip did not disappoint.

But first, PATRONS!  Here’s a shout-out to new supporter Nick Scobel!  Thank you so much, Nick, for supporting the show, and thanks as always to all of the folks who help keep the show going. 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 episode, I was fortunate enough to spend a little time on California’s Carrizo Plain with a group doing research and conservation work with the blunt-nosed leopard lizard (Gambelia sila).  After a long day of lizard looking, and lizard lassoing, and lizard processing, I sat around a campfire on a chilly evening and recorded a conversation with Robert Hansen, Emily Taylor, Katie Rock, and Savanna Weaver (They’re all under the lizard in the photo). Bob of course is of course the long-time editor of Herp Review, and you will remember Emily Taylor from Episode Twelve recorded last summer.  I also spoke with Katie Rock about “Quantifying the Gender Gap in Authorship in Herpetology”, an interesting paper that she and her coauthors published in the March 2021 volume of Herpetologica (and is featured on the cover!).  NOTE:  If you don’t have access to the paper, drop me an email to somuchpingle@gmail.com and I will send it to you.  And last but not least, Savannah Weaver gave us the lowdown on the blunt-nosed leopard lizard and her ongoing research project.

Thanks Bob, Emily, Katie and Savannah!  I had such a great time talking with all of you!  Now of course, after listening to the show you’ll want to follow these folks on Twitter:  Emily (@snakeymama), Katie (@KatietheeRock), and Savannah (@ScienceWithSav).

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, lizard lasso techniques, tips for herping better, etc.

Cheers!  Mike