The Frog-monitoring Project
The aim of this monitoring project is to survey a segment of the Kuranda Tree frog (KTF) population and quantify other frogs present at these KTF breeding sites. From the surveys we may be able infer the health of the overall population in each catchments surveyed.
If we detect an increase or a large decrease we can investigate changes in the catchment conditions which may have caused these variations. Since the KTF is listed as critically endangered this becomes an important dataset over time to determine the factors leading to decline within the mosaic of land uses in the area.
Of course, frogs are just the iconic species that indicate unseen environmental decline in both habitat for wildlife and water quality that can eventually lead to decline in other species, including human health.
In October 2012, Kuranda Envirocare received funding from The Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund (MBZ) to monitor the KTF in conjunction with Dr Conrad Hoskin, the eveloutionary bioogist whose work from 2000 lead to the listing of the Kuranda Tree Frog (Litoria myola) as a species in 2008. When listed, the KTF status was endangered, but the status was upgraded to Critically endangered in 2018. .
Would you like to volunteer as a site monitor? Like to come and try it.
- Two hours of your time at night, once a month. Thirty minutes at each site, usually two sites per night
- Sturdy footwear
- A good head torch and a good pair of ears
- Do some practice on the calls of 3 frogs listed below (don't worry if you didn't have time, we give on the night training)
- A Kuranda Envirocare site monitor will provide the rest of the training on site
- Once a year FREE training / refresher session on the purpose and the frog calls for the project
Volunteers identify frogs, primarily by their calls. We also encourage YOU to listen out for the three target frogs we are particularly interested in - Litoria myola, Litoria serrata, Litoria dayii
Use the Frogs of Australia App (iPhone only, cost) to identify these calls or we'd love it if you recorded what your hearing through FrogID app, free, and a real human being will assess your recording and get back to you with a confirmed identification.
Kuranda Envirocare are coordinating the monitoring and collation of the data. Both Kuranda Envirocare and Dr Hoskin will collaborate on analysing trends in the data. The MBZ grant initiated the monitoring and funded the first 3 years and the project has been continued unfunded for a further 3 years to 2019. We expect we will be able to continue basically unfunded for 10 years to 2013.
Additional monitoring sites have been added to the original 6 so in 2020 we have 10 sites being monitored.
This will be the first long-term community frog-monitoring project that we know of in Australia and certainly northeast Queensland. Why are we focusing on Frogs rather than other species?