Another Arizona EOY Post

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ThamnElegans24
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Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by ThamnElegans24 » October 20th, 2013, 6:45 pm

I know that 2013 is nowhere near over yet, but it's time for me to start saving and planning for next year. I doubt I'll make anymore trips into the field until then. So here's a general account of how my year went. As always I'll skip the narrative and get right to the photos. If anyone has any questions, feel free to ask.

Toads:

Red-spotted Toad (Anaxyrus punctatus)

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Great Plains Toad (Anaxyrus cognatus)

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Woodhouse’s Toad (Anaxyrus woodhousii)

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Sonoran Desert Toad (Incilius/Ollotis alvarius)

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Couch's Spadefoot (Scaphiopus couchii)

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Frogs:

American Bullfrog (Lithobates catesbeiana)

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Lowland Leopard Frog (Lthobates yavapaiensis)

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Chiricahua Leopard Frog (Lithobates chiricahuensis)

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Turtles & Tortoises:

Desert Tortoises (Gopherus agassizii)

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Sonoran Mud Turtles (Kinosternon sonoriense)

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Ornate Box Turtles (Terrapene ornata)

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Lizards:

Western Banded Gecko (Coleonyx variegatus)

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Great Basin Collared Lizard (Crotaphytus bicinctores)

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Colorado Desert Fringe-toed Lizard (Uma notata)

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Desert Iguanas (Dipsosaurus dorsalis)

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Desert Horned Lizards (Phrynosoma platyrhinos)

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Greater Short-horned Lizards (Phrynosoma hernandesi)

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Elegant Earless Lizard (Holbrookia elegans)

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Yarrow's Spiny Lizard (Sceloporus yarrovii)

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Tiger Whiptails (Aspidoscelis tigris)

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Gila Spotted Whiptails (Aspidoscelis flagellicauda)

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Desert Grasslands Whiptail (Aspidoscelis uniparens)

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Sonoran Spotted Whiptail (Aspidoscelis sonorae)

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Madrean Alligator Lizard (Elgaria kingii)

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San Diego Alligator Lizard (Elgaria multicarinata webbii)

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Long-nosed Leopard Lizards (Gambelia wislizenii)

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Gila Monster (Heloderma suspectum)

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Flat-tailed Horned Lizard (Phrynosoma mcallii)

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Snakes:

Desert Nightsnake (Hypsiglena chlorophaea)

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San Diego Nightsnakes (Hypsiglena ochrorhyncha klauberi)

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Western Long-nosed Snakes (Rhinocheilus lecontei)

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Sonoran Gophersnakes (Pituophis catenifer affinis)

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Sonoran Lyresnake (Trimorphodon lambda)

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Desert Patch-nose Snake (Salvadora hexalepis hexalepis)

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Big Bend Patch-nosed Snake (Salvadora hexalepis deserticola)

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Checkered Gartersnake (Thamnophis cyrtopsis)

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Spotted Leaf-nosed Snake (Phyllorhynchus decurtatus)

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Striped Whipsnake (Coluber taeniatus)

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Arizona Glossy Snake (Arizona elegans noctivaga)

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Desert Kingsnake (Lampropeltis getula splendida)

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California Kingsnake (Lampropeltis getula californiae)

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Green Ratsnake (Senticolis triaspis)

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Mexican Hog-nosed Snakes (Heterodon kennerlyi)

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Desert Rosy Boas (Lichanura trivirgata gracia)

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Coastal Rosy Boas

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Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes (Crotalus atrox)

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Mohave Rattlesnakes (Crotalus scutulatus)

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Sonoran Sidewinder (Crotalus cerastes cercobombus)

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Northern Black-tailed Rattlesnakes (Crotalus molossus molossus)

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Southwestern Speckled Rattlesnakes (Crotalus mitchellii pyrrhus)

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Red Diamond Rattlesnake (Crotalus ruber)

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Tiger Rattlesnakes (Crotalus tigris)

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Arizona Black Rattlesnakes (Crotalus cerberus)

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Banded Rock Rattlesnakes (Crotalus lepidus klauberi)

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Arizona Ridge-nosed Rattlesnakes (Crotalus willardi willardi)

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That does it for the reptiles and amphibians. Here are some other things for those who are into more than just herps.

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Inverts:

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Birds:

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Mammals:

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Well that pretty much sums up my year. I didn't see nearly as much diversity as I did last year, but it was still freaking awesome. And big thanks to anyone and everyone who aided in making it so.

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Norman D
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by Norman D » October 20th, 2013, 9:02 pm

Nice Ben!

I loved the phrynosoma shots....mccalli in AZ? I need shots of AZ platyrhinos... wasn't able to photo the only one I saw this year.

Also, as you know I enjoyed the speck, tiger, and cerb shots.

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ThamnElegans24
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by ThamnElegans24 » October 20th, 2013, 10:16 pm

Thanks Norm. But since when do you care about lizards lol. I'm glad you like the phrynosoma shots. And while that mcalli was my favorite find of the year, it was actually found while walking the perimeter of some dunes in Cali.

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The fact that it wasn't found in AZ is my only regret of the year. Which is why an AZ mcalli is high on my list of things to find next year.

Oh and while we are on the subject here's another phrynosoma species from this year.

Texas Horned Lizard (Phrynosoma cornutum)

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The weird thing is that I saw about a dozen Regals last year, but not a single one this year.

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Norman D
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by Norman D » October 20th, 2013, 10:44 pm

ThamnElegans24 wrote:Thanks Norm. But since when do you care about lizards lol.
Phrynosoma and Heloderma are the only lizards are care about! lol. I still do like chuckwallas, but don't photo them. I have seen lots of lifer "cool lizards", but Phrynosoma and Heloderma are the only ones that I photograph. CA is also where I got my lifer mccalli; never tried for them in AZ. My AZ phrynosoma list is modestum, mccalli, and platyrhinos in that order. Horned lizards would be about the only lizard I would look for... when the rattlesnake hunting isn't ideal.

Cornutum is always nice. They are very easy down in those areas. I rarely see high numbers of solare, but I did see 2 in city limits this year and my father found 2 on a very busy major street in town as well. He moved them off the road.

Take care

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BillMcGighan
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by BillMcGighan » October 21st, 2013, 6:08 am

Great cross-section of SW herps.
Thanks for that.

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AndyO'Connor
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by AndyO'Connor » October 21st, 2013, 6:24 am

Nice post. What's the story with the totaled new chevy?

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reptilist
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by reptilist » October 21st, 2013, 8:03 am

Boy, there's some neat shots in there!
CONGRATS!

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ThamnElegans24
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Joined: November 23rd, 2010, 6:44 pm
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by ThamnElegans24 » October 21st, 2013, 1:49 pm

Thanks guys.

Andy, There is actually a pretty good story behind that truck photo. My friend Chris and I were driving home from a night of herping. We were on a long straight section of road and noticed some headlights about a mile behind us. A few momments later as the road begain to curve that truck came flying up on us trying to pass in the curve. He was going so fast that he lost control and starting sliding sideways on the sholder next to us. He plowed over a street sign and a couple of bushes before coming to a stop in the position in the photo. As we were calling 911 we saw what could only be discribed as a zombie stumbling towards us through the dirt fog in the headlights. I looked over to see my friend pull out his handgun and chamber a round. We had no clue what this idiot was about to do. When he finally limped up to the driverside window it was obvious that he had way too much to drink. He tried to convince us that he was fine and we should continue on our way. But we weren't having it. He stumbled back to his truck and disappeared. So we decided to get out and check on him. It was at that point that we noticed two other vehicles sitting off the side of the road that he had just drifted his truck on. Turns out that these two older ladies were moving somewhere and decided to pull off of the highway and catch some zs. The other trucks tracks missed those incredibly lucky ladies by about a foot. We tried to find the driver but he made his way off into the desert somewhere. the police arrived about a half an hour later , took our info, and started looking for the guy.

Later in the week a detective called my friend to interview him. Apparently the guy had been drinking at a bar and tried to get a ride home. When no one would give him a ride he decided to take some keys off of the bar counter and tried the vehicles in the parking lot until he found the right one. The best, or worst, part of the story is that the owner of the truck left his 4 or 5 year old son in the backseat of his truck while he went in for some drinks. When the truck thief notice the child in the backseat a few mile down the road he thought it would be a good idea to drop the poor kid off on the side of a remote desert road in the middle of a moonless night. Had we known that part of the story when we met later down the road we might have actually shot him.

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rosy-man
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by rosy-man » October 21st, 2013, 8:39 pm

GOOD STUFF LOVE THE BOAS

Verhoodled
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by Verhoodled » October 21st, 2013, 10:12 pm

Wow, Ben! Simply Wow!

One could print out an annual AZ field guide based on your posts alone.

You've truly had a fine year. Thanks for sharing and taking us along for the ride! I hope we cross paths in the near future. I had the privilege of meeting Dave at the Tucson show, and Terry earlier in the year. Are you going to the show up in Mesa? I'll likely be working the AHA booth.

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AndyO'Connor
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by AndyO'Connor » October 22nd, 2013, 6:15 am

Wow, that story is crazy. The idiot that left his kid in the truck while he went in the bar is worse than the guy who stole the truck in my opinion and is lucky he got to see his son alive again. Anyways, thanks for sharing, and great post again!

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azatrox
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by azatrox » October 22nd, 2013, 6:37 am

Great stuff Ben...I've really noticed a difference in your photography lately. Keep up the good work!

I'm not usually much for "road shots", but you've succeeded in creating some visually interesting perspectives on quite a few of yours.

Really enjoyed this post.

-Kris

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justinm
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by justinm » October 22nd, 2013, 1:23 pm

I really enjoyed this. The rattlers are of course awesome, loved that Tiger with the big rattle. The mcalli is so cool, I can't wait to see one of those.

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ThamnElegans24
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by ThamnElegans24 » October 22nd, 2013, 7:28 pm

Thanks again everyone.

Kris, I'm glad you noticed an improvement. When I first got into herp photography 4 years ago, I was all about seeing as many snakes as possible, and would rush from one to the next. Now I'm getting to a point where I would rather take my time and get great shots of one subject, rather than rushing to get crappy shots of three. As far as the road photos go, I try my best to capture that rush of the first sight. That way I can relive that moment later every time I see the photo. And while they might not be everyones idea of an ideal insitu photo, I still love them. I'd much rather get a great in road insitu photo than a posed on the sholder shot.

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azatrox
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by azatrox » October 23rd, 2013, 6:07 am

Kris, I'm glad you noticed an improvement. When I first got into herp photography 4 years ago, I was all about seeing as many snakes as possible, and would rush from one to the next. Now I'm getting to a point where I would rather take my time and get great shots of one subject, rather than rushing to get crappy shots of three. As far as the road photos go, I try my best to capture that rush of the first sight. That way I can relive that moment later every time I see the photo. And while they might not be everyones idea of an ideal insitu photo, I still love them. I'd much rather get a great in road insitu photo than a posed on the sholder shot.

I'm the same way dude...I'd much rather get stellar shots of one animal than a bunch of mediocre shots of a bunch of them...I often catch a bunch of crap because I take so many pics and spend my time on it...LOL

Some of your road shots make the viewer feel as though they were there too...Road shots can work if the photographer gives contextual clues as to what the environment looks like....background, lighting, etc. Too often there are pics of a snake sitting on pavement, and these never really did anything for me because it's just a photo of a snake sitting on pavement...Not a whole lot going on...With the contextual clues, you're almost transporting the viewer into the area with you, and I think it does a lot for the photo. I've noticed quite the improvement with your photos in the past few years, and this is but one observation.

Keep it up man! :)

-Kris

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ThamnElegans24
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by ThamnElegans24 » October 23rd, 2013, 3:23 pm

Thanks again Kris.

Monty, when is the Mesa show?

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Will Wells
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by Will Wells » October 26th, 2013, 6:25 am

Nice work Ben! You saw some really cool herps!!!

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MattSullivan
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Re: Another Arizona EOY Post

Post by MattSullivan » October 31st, 2013, 6:02 pm

awesome. very jealous of all the horned lizards, sidewinder, and hog noses

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