The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

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The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » February 14th, 2020, 11:01 am

PREFACE: I’m not gonna lie… This is going to be The most unentertaining thing you’ve ever seen. You’re better off watching your computer screensaver and starting an update ...Or charging your phone and staring at it until it's done. You’ll be left with the feeling of, “why did I waste the last 3 minutes of my life on this” ...urged to send me PMs with the heading, “I want my money back” ...and, the all-time classic “I thought this guy had something to offer, other than more disappointment...”

Readers choice says, “it just lacks the pizzazz..!”
Cisco & Ebert.. "two thumbs down!!"

So, without further ado, I present to you... The Mattress



Welcome to THE MATTRESS :thumb: The Field Herp Forums first ongoing vlog :sleep: Times have slowed down in the forum realm... We all miss the good ol' days where interesting subjects, fresh photog, and herpetological news was shared and discussed on a regular basis. Still, the forum thrives with viewers young and old. Along with a handful of authors, old and new. When life gets boring... "hmmm, maybe I'll check out the forum and see what's happening." A thought we all share! Over the last 10 years, I've found that what I enjoyed the most was video. Getting a close up look at the unique beauty of these strange creatures. As someone who couldn't take just one photo of any given individual, I commonly struggled to pick out the best four shots of what usually turned out to be an extensive photo session. With video, I can easily record everything I want to remember in just a few seconds :mrgreen: So, I'm returning back to my roots. The good thing about the mattress is you never know what you'll find... Or when you will find it...

To kick things off... Here are a few clips I've gotten so far this year. They're in 4k so make sure you click that setting on the vid for the crisp clearlity:
:beer:






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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » February 16th, 2020, 1:08 am

Ok, so I received some complements and encouragement on the mattress video by another videographer tonight :beer:
Also, wanted to say something.…

I got a little touch of the anxiety over the preface last couple days. Worried it would be taken out of context. I just want people to know that I’m not trying to be obnoxious and that it’s coming from a non-stressful humorously random standpoint. Not sure how that translates to some viewers, but my intentions with this ongoing thread are positive.

Also I just want to say that this is a huge Relief for me because I was already not looking forward to doing an end of the year video. They just take way too much time, I have to wait till the end of the year so I can try to figure out what direction to go with all the footage, and I already wasn’t looking forward to it. Not to mention the footage I already tossed out.

So, as a toast to non-stressful situations, the next vid I’ll be adding is an outtakes & b-sides. Then we should be pretty much caught up at that point...

Again, My intentions are good and I’m not trying to launch any type of attack on anyone. But I’m gonna warn you right now, shits about to get weird............ :lol:

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » February 17th, 2020, 10:10 am

ImageIMG_0208 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0200 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0181 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

ImageIMG_0183 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr




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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » February 26th, 2020, 9:29 am

Unfortunately YouTube has blocked my awesome usage of Kimbra's, The Build Up... :cry: I was however able to upload it into Flickr.

Flickr has a 3 minute limit to video uploads. So I had to devide it into 2 parts. Pretty bummed, but at least I can share the beautiful artistic footage of this native snail (and more). Something about a snail crawing across burnt woodland bark... An emotional and solemn display of survival against seemigly inescapable tragedy
:sleep:

Screenshot (37).png



PART 1:

ImageThe Wind Up - part 1 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr


PART 2:

ImageThe Wind Up - part 2 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by chris_mcmartin » February 26th, 2020, 6:49 pm

Porter wrote:
February 17th, 2020, 10:10 am
ImageIMG_0208 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr
That's a cool photo!

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » February 27th, 2020, 3:43 am

Thanks Chris :) I showed my friend the picture right after I took it and we were Trippin on how cool the clouds look. The tree branches on the left seem to mirror the cloud shapes. So, I incorporated that best the I could. The scattered broken light. Right place at the right time

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » March 1st, 2020, 6:47 am

The Adventure Begins... :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :sleep:



Imagez hook by The Singing Frog, on Flickr




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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » March 1st, 2020, 12:54 pm


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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Kelly Mc » March 2nd, 2020, 5:15 pm

Beautiful work.

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » March 4th, 2020, 11:08 pm

Kelly Mc wrote:
March 2nd, 2020, 5:15 pm
Beautiful work.
Thank you!

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » March 7th, 2020, 11:18 am

An artistic drive into the world of field herping...



Holy Jumping Juvi...


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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » March 18th, 2020, 11:01 am

Ok, Video re-uploaded... Now the 4k is working. I think it's best to leave the YouTube window up until processing is finished when uploading larger files. Added some comparison pics at the end. Enjoy.. :mrgreen:



Visited by an old friend during my ventures... He greeted me with some deep meaningful croakage. Then, by the time I started filming he had continued on with a high pitched tone of excitement. I spoke back, "You know the drill... take me to the snakes! Today I've brought ya half a peanut butter & jellyfish sandwich, 2 field pups, and a half-full bottle of Fiji artesian full of pebbles. Show me the dweezle boppin' delta boglins..?" And away we went...



4 flips... 3 boards... 3 kings... 1 snake under each board. Nice flippage :thumb:


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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » March 23rd, 2020, 7:30 pm

Turning over artificial cover to see what turns up. To reveal the hidden truth... the hidden beauty. Looking for love in all the wrong places..? Only time shall tell...




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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by dylan1422 » March 31st, 2020, 12:14 pm

Nice to see someone getting outside and enjoying the hobby during this stormy season of life. And refreshing to see activity on the forum. There are some rad shots in this thread, and my daughter and I think the videos are fun.

These questions might sound dumb, but are you in NorCal? And are those sharp tailed snakes? I've never seen so many herps under one piece of cover. Is that common where you're located?

Appreciate the shares. 💪🏻

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 3rd, 2020, 7:34 am

dylan1422 wrote:
March 31st, 2020, 12:14 pm
Nice to see someone getting outside and enjoying the hobby during this stormy season of life. And refreshing to see activity on the forum. There are some rad shots in this thread, and my daughter and I think the videos are fun.
Thanks Man ☺️ I appreciate that 🍻

I’m having fun just doing my own thing 🤙🏻 Glad there’s some people out there who like it
dylan1422 wrote:
March 31st, 2020, 12:14 pm
These questions might sound dumb, but are you in NorCal? And are those sharp tailed snakes? I've never seen so many herps under one piece of cover. Is that common where you're located?

Appreciate the shares. 💪🏻
No such thing as a dumb question. Yeah, I'm in the Roseville/Sacramento area. The common people call them rose boas out here, which I think is actually really sweet and fitting ...but yeah, they are sharptail, contia tenuis. From what I've experienced, they seem to have dense populations. Where you find one, there's a ton. Finding that many together under one surface cover is still not entirely common. I've only seen it twice. One time I was flipping a pile of dirt and broken cement chunks up in the Sierras and flipped 12-15 under one peice. It was on the side of the mound and they all just came spilling out. I grabbed a handful and put them in a nearby junk bucket before they could all get away. (pic below). It's more common to flip 2 or 4 together in early spring. A skink or gator with them is normal.

I think its a combination of the right conditions, right area, and cover that isn't flipped regularily. That peice of sheet metal I ripped up from the earth in the last vid, that had the 4 garters under it, is a good example. It literally had become part of the ground :lol: I flipped 4 large ringnecks in the Sierras under some similar sheetmetal that hadnt been touched in years. Same goes for large snakes. I've got some hidden spots that only I know about and we flipped 3 huge racer under one single ply last year. Then at my buddies spot he flipped a bunch of racers and gophers...maybe a king. I want to say it was 5 or 6 snakes but I cant remember what all was in the pic. Maybe he'll chime in if he reads this... but we flipped 4 racers and a gopher under the same board a couple weeks after that. But it really just has to be a spot that doesn't get hit constantly and left alone. I flipped something like 8-10 longtoed salamanders in Washington the first time I was there. and 4 more under a board next to it. They all started crawling away everywhere Lol it was pretty crazy. The board looked like it had never been flipped. Just some random large piece of plywood I found out in a field

Screenshot (191).jpg
Screenshot (154).jpg

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 3rd, 2020, 7:53 am

Welp...YouTube strikes again 😑 They blocked the usage of one of my favorite childhood songs, Rocky Raccoon (The Beatles). So, you'll have to listen to me baby-talking instead :lol: Pretty bummed but an Awesome raccoon experience nontheless. Best encounter I’ve had with one of these adorable little guys.



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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 3rd, 2020, 8:02 am

I want to point something out that I feel is important to address. There are some scenes in my past vids (and here) that might give the impression that I'm being careless or rough with the animals. Jerking them around and whipping them out of the scene. Most of these scene have been sped up into fast motion in order to fit more footage within the limitation of the theme song. So, what was originally filmed slow and smooth is now quick and jerky. I realized this after editing and I've been a little worried of inspiring improper handling...

I’m planning on getting a gimbal soon and hopefully that will smooth out the footage a little better for the fast motion edits :thumb:

I want to ensure all viewer these little guys were handled with care! I'm always aware of how much pressure I'm putting on them. They are delicate little creatures and you have to be mindful of their little bones and careful to not force bend them. Fragile little fingers and toes! Internet can be deceiving… So don’t allow the media between us to alter your perception of the truth.
Also, I did notice that the female skink in this vid was gravid after I snatched her up. I was careful not to press or squeeze the eggs inside of her. In fact upon noticing, I decided to stop filming. That's when she bit my knuckle and wouldn't let go :lol: I had to hold my hand to the ground for about 40 seconds and pet her off. So, just a heads up & reminder... it's that time of year. Try to be gentle when catching these critters. In most cases, especially with snakes, you might not know the gender until you already have ahold of em 🍻





I like how these pictures turned out so I figured I’d include them... :mrgreen:

ImageUntitled by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

ImageUntitled by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 5th, 2020, 12:44 am

dylan1422 wrote:
March 31st, 2020, 12:14 pm
These questions might sound dumb, but are you in NorCal? And are those sharp tailed snakes? I've never seen so many herps under one piece of cover. Is that common where you're located?

Appreciate the shares. 💪🏻
Porter wrote:
April 3rd, 2020, 7:34 am
Then at my buddies spot he flipped a bunch of racers and gophers...maybe a king. I want to say it was 5 or 6 snakes but I cant remember what all was in the pic. Maybe he'll chime in if he reads this... but we flipped 4 racers and a gopher under the same board a couple weeks after that.


I talked to my friend today and ask if he still had that pic...turns out he did :thumb: So, I had him txt to me show you. There are 7 in the picture, but he says there were like 10 when he first flipped it. By the time he got the camera aimed & shot, they already had started to scatter....
🐍💨💨💨 <---- 📸

ImageUntitled by The Singing Frog, on Flickr


Here's another shot he sent over from a different location (that unfortunately no longer exists). There were 3 garters and 3 gophers when he first flipped it...

ImageUntitled by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 6th, 2020, 7:29 am

🌧🌧🌧🌧
_💧💧💧
....📷
🐍 🦂 🐍



SquidGrip 🦑 :thumb:

ImageIMG_9627 by The Singing Frog, on Flickr







I normally don't point out aspects like this in my photography... but this is just too cool to not bring to light. Something anyone should be able to enjoy (and educational). Talk about hitting your vantage points & shape balance with precision 🎯 😎

ImageScreenshot (202) by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

ImageScreenshot (202) - marked by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by DylanMcDiarmid » April 8th, 2020, 7:23 pm

Those multiple snake flips are crazy! I've flipped a few ringnecks at a time under natural cover, but never anything like that. As of very recently, I am no longer privy to any AC sites that aren't accessed by others (as of recently when my all my spots were recklessly visited :cry: ). Gotta find somewhere private to do some board lines!

What an experience though to flip a bunch of snakes like that. Thanks for the response and the share.

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 13th, 2020, 1:41 am


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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 13th, 2020, 2:03 am

DylanMcDiarmid wrote:
April 8th, 2020, 7:23 pm
Those multiple snake flips are crazy! I've flipped a few ringnecks at a time under natural cover, but never anything like that. As of very recently, I am no longer privy to any AC sites that aren't accessed by others (as of recently when my all my spots were recklessly visited :cry: ). Gotta find somewhere private to do some board lines!

What an experience though to flip a bunch of snakes like that. Thanks for the response and the share.
Thanks man :beer: It's not easy... Which is why herpers take the issue so personal. A couple years ago, I made the mistake of revealing GPS on all my photos posted from Flickr. That same year, even before the season was good, everything I had was trashed... I had this huge TV cardboard box I set up under a tree next to where I found it dumped in December. It produced full-grown breeding Kings 3 months later. Following that, multiple kings and garters. One baby king was record-size small (sharp-tailed snake sized head and body width). These dudes ripped up the cardboard box, trying to flip it wet, thinking it was garbage 🤦🏻‍♂️🤷🏻‍♂️ I still found snake under the destroyed debris for that year and the next year. A road I never saw anyone herping EVER was flowing with hungry eyes of car-passer-bys. I even saw these dudes moving my AC to build their own spots. Thinking that the spot didn't produce because they were hitting it wrong time of day for that month. Thats why I only set garbage now. All the stuff I re-flipped back over from my Lost Roads vid had been flipped and not put back again :lol: They think it's worthlss cause they dont find anything... I woulda had a high-red Valley garter for this vid to share with everyone if they would have just put it back

Ethics is the most elemental aspect of field herping... you earn your year by your actions. Feel the earth and trust her guidence. Read her signs. She'll show you what she wants you to see :thumb: I rarely do anything at all... just respect the moral energy with a big heart.

Also, if something is not working... come up with your own ideas. Forcing a thought is as abusive as forcing an action. You'll be rewarded for your efforts (not saying you're guilty of any of this. Just sharing some mindset)

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by DylanMcDiarmid » April 13th, 2020, 8:45 pm

Man...I couldn't agree more. It's truly disheartening when I see signs of habitat destruction likely caused by herpers. We are supposed to be a community that honors and appreciates nature. And it's honestly devastating when it happens to a fruitful location you've frequented and taken care of for years.

Definitely a more productive piece of cardboard than I've ever found! I can think of so many times I've come across a piece or pile of natural or artificial cover - that looked so promising - but I've chosen not to touch it, because doing so would likely compromise the habitat (like tearing the wet box).

But hey the way I feel when I encounter the aftermath of reckless herpers has produced something positive at least within me - it encourages me to be even more respectful of animals and habitat.

Appreciate your said respect for nature, which I believe to be genuine, and your continued activity on this forum. Always fun to interact with peeps that enjoy the passion 💪🏻

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 13th, 2020, 10:39 pm

DylanMcDiarmid wrote:
April 13th, 2020, 8:45 pm
Man...I couldn't agree more. It's truly disheartening when I see signs of habitat destruction likely caused by herpers. We are supposed to be a community that honors and appreciates nature. And it's honestly devastating when it happens to a fruitful location you've frequented and taken care of for years.

Definitely a more productive piece of cardboard than I've ever found! I can think of so many times I've come across a piece or pile of natural or artificial cover - that looked so promising - but I've chosen not to touch it, because doing so would likely compromise the habitat (like tearing the wet box).

But hey the way I feel when I encounter the aftermath of reckless herpers has produced something positive at least within me - it encourages me to be even more respectful of animals and habitat.

Appreciate your said respect for nature, which I believe to be genuine, and your continued activity on this forum. Always fun to interact with peeps that enjoy the passion 💪🏻
True, there are times when I see logs that I know would be great to rip up or bark peel... or AC that looks like it could be a utilized incubator. Got to try to make your best decision based on the circumstances. That one log could be the only thing keeping that population thriving.

Well, I didn't just find it.. I did set it. So, I don't want to give the impression that I'm just strolling through lol It wouldn't have produced like that where it was dumped. When I said, "I rarely do anything at all..." I mean in regards to setting up trash. Trust me, we put in the work lol Last year was one of the best years for kingsnake. While everyone was hitting the blackbelly spot, we were exploring new terrain. We live so close to it we could hit it a couple times a week. We choose not to... its a sad experience.

I appreciate the comments! I figured the forum needs some life. Lol ...and I mean, who else in the world even wants to look at this kinda thing :lol: video, music, and art are past hobbies. The artistic quality and beauty of these animals is always fascinated me since I was a kid. So, It's fun to do and I'm Always waiting for that special girl to take notice (whoever she may be)... ⏰ :sleep: So, it’s coming from some good inspiration.

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by DylanMcDiarmid » April 14th, 2020, 9:48 pm

Last year was a good kingsnake year, huh? Could've fooled me, lol. Still got a ton of learning to do.

Lol! In my experience, the hobby has been attractive to women, especially those that value education/outdoors. However, finding a woman that enjoys to go out and participate on a regular basis is a different story. I am currently blessed with one, so they do exist. Prayers for patience and success in that search 💪🏻

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 16th, 2020, 2:02 am

DylanMcDiarmid wrote:
April 14th, 2020, 9:48 pm
Last year was a good kingsnake year, huh? Could've fooled me, lol. Still got a ton of learning to do.

Lol! In my experience, the hobby has been attractive to women, especially those that value education/outdoors. However, finding a woman that enjoys to go out and participate on a regular basis is a different story. I am currently blessed with one, so they do exist. Prayers for patience and success in that search 💪🏻
🍻

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 16th, 2020, 4:37 pm

Got together with a friend for some safe holiday herping... Egg hunting with the Dukes of the Delta
🐣🐰🐣 - Day before Easter





It was truly amazing to see this snake again after the original find, 6 years ago... Enough to make me drop the camera while filming apparently :lol: This snake was the most beautifully colored snake I had ever seen. 3rd or 4th striped morph found during 2014. Four stripers found that year. This was the prettiest of the bunch. There was a guy, I forget the name, on here who had Frank Zappa as his avatar. He told me, "Yeah, they're weird... I didn't see one for years (or he had never seen one, I don't remember now) and then one year I found like 5 of them (also, I could have the number wrong lol)." That following year (or same year..?), I found em...exactly like he said :thumb: I remember thinking, "dammit, why didn't I photograph that snake better before letting him go...!?" I rarely hold on to a snake to photograph the following day unless I'm out of town. Easter Sunday brought a perfect morning sunbreak lighting situation that lit up and enriched the colors. So thankful for the opportunity... :crazyeyes: 😇 Coolest snake I ever found.

I hope this can and will encourage Capture & Release! Even with rare and unique morphs such as this one... Let it be. You'll be rewarded later down the road :thumb:






Here's a link the original shots of this snake when I first road cruised him back in 2014: https://www.flickr.com/photos/137039835 ... 4089492116

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by DylanMcDiarmid » April 21st, 2020, 11:22 pm

That's a lot of snakes 🤓 those striped gophers are rad! Crazy you found that one so far from where you originally saw him.

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 22nd, 2020, 5:51 pm

DylanMcDiarmid wrote:
April 21st, 2020, 11:22 pm
That's a lot of snakes 🤓 those striped gophers are rad! Crazy you found that one so far from where you originally saw him.
The delta’s dukes shall prevail… even when the system has taken 90% of their habitat, they will adapt, evolve and survive 💪🏻

Go find some snakes!! Your Dukes are hiding out there somewhere..🍻

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 30th, 2020, 9:00 am


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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » April 30th, 2020, 9:01 am




Alright, I finally had some time to check the blotching on the ensatina… yep, sure enough. It's the Lilac morph I found in 2018 :thumb: I thought she looked familar... I wasn't too sure at first because the color looked light, but she was covered in dust. I recognized the tail first...then the eyes/head shape. There's a male who lives here too and I've seen 2 of there young. Curious to see what gender they are and if one of them lightens up with age. I've seen the male twice so far and one baby twice. This 2nd encounter earns her a name... Lil Tina - Lil(ac) (ensa)tina :mrgreen: Stoked!
Prettiest amphibian I've ever seen.

Here's some of the 2018 photography. It's hard to match up to the vid, but if you pause/freeze frame... it's easiest to match up the crowns of the left and right side blotches:

Imagedsc_0981-2_32557377258_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_0965-2_32557378038_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_0996-2_32557376568_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_1005-2_32557376478_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_1016-2_32557375918_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_0977-2_32557377428_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_1011-2_32557376358_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

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Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » May 2nd, 2020, 5:00 pm

Just went through an old SD card I had in a little Canon camcorder. Had a few decent clips on there of the lilac ensatina, in situ lateralis eating a bluebelly, freshly emerged morning basking gopher, and a beauty from Elk Grove. I'll add a few shot to accompany the footage. They will magically & gradually appear over the next 24 hrs... Clips are in 1080p so they should be ready to go




Imagedsc_0264-2aaa_41855766061_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_0264-2a_41855767041_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_0254-2_41812887422_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_0244-2_27987226038_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_0247-2_27987223248_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_1362-2a_45516503925_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

Imagedsc_1158-2_31489682087_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

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Imagedsc_1188-2_31489676077_o by The Singing Frog, on Flickr

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Porter
Posts: 2086
Joined: March 19th, 2011, 6:43 pm

Re: The Mattress - An ongoing thread of stories from the field

Post by Porter » May 3rd, 2020, 8:42 pm




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