For Immediate Release: May 19, 2015
Contact: Patricia Turley – email@example.com – 303-969-2701
Science Café: Effects of Salinity on Amphibians in the Big Thicket
Kountze, Texas - The Big Thicket National Preserve Science Café program series continues this May with a presentation from U.S. Geologic Survey researcher Brad Glorioso on Wednesday, May 13th, at 6 pm at the Logon Café in Beaumont, Texas.
Mr. Glorioso is an ecologist with the USGS at the National Wetlands Research Center in Lafayette, LA. His current research focuses on long-term amphibian monitoring in the Atchafalaya Basin of south- central Louisiana and in Big Thicket National Preserve, as part of the USGS Amphibian Research and Monitoring Initiative, led by principal investigator Hardin Waddle. They have over 50 sampling locations along bayous and other waterways in the lower part of the Beaumont Unit in Big Thicket National Preserve, where they have so far identified 14 species of frogs, as well as over 22 species of reptiles.
Increased water salinity in these wetlands, due to storms, sea level rise, and loss of freshwater from upstream, can have very damaging impacts on amphibian populations. Frogs and toads are particularly vulnerable to increased water salinity due to their water-permeable skin and, in the case of tadpoles, their inability to escape excessively saline water. These factors make it important for us to understand the abundance and distribution of amphibians in our coastal wetlands, and how they may be affected by future management decisions.
The Science Café is free and open to the public. This program will be held at Logon Café, 3805 Calder St, in Beaumont at 6 pm on Wednesday, May 13th. For more information, contact Park Ranger Mary Kay Manning at 409-951-6720.
For general information about Big Thicket National Preserve, visit www.nps.gov/bith or call the preserve visitor center at 409-951-6700.
Big Thicket National Preserve News Release
As a co-investigator who collects for numerous Big Thicket National Preserve primary investigators, I often scoop, net, and trap additional species other than my target. Yesterday morning I was checking a crayfish trap and found it full of other water animalia, one of which was a very long, eel-like creature. After removing the 5 catfish, 1 small perch and 2 crayfish, I attempted to remove the curious creature with a leather glove (I use a leather glove to remove catfish from traps because of their nasty spikes hidden in their fins). If you have ever had a cow or bison try to lick your face or hand you will understand the slime this thing produced. It slimed my glove so thoroughly I couldn't get a firm grasp on the slippery, foot-long, writhing creature. I finally had to remove my protective, leather glove and held my breath, hoped for the best and grabbed near its head to pull it through the very small opening of the crayfish trap.