My real 2014 year in review...

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frogfish
Posts: 57
Joined: June 28th, 2013, 6:10 pm

My real 2014 year in review...

Post by frogfish » December 12th, 2014, 10:35 am

...and what a year it was! Full of both highs and lows, I've met some amazing people, traveled to some stunning places, and seen some absolutely incredible animals.

I was able to herp 12 states this year (From AZ to FL to NJ to MI) and finally figured out my (ex)home state of North Carolina. Overall, I saw 71 different species of snake alive this year (and many more dead, including 5 DOR rainbow snakes), 46 species of salamander (40 from the state of NC itself), 33 species of frog/toads, 19 species of turtles/tortoises, and an untold amount of lizards (due to whiptails/scelops of AZ and exotics of FL). The best part definitely was being able to spend time with good friends!

I am just going to post a photo review, but feel free to look at my previous posts this year for a more detailed write-up of my adventures:
http://www.fieldherpforum.com/forum/vie ... =2&t=20395
http://www.fieldherpforum.com/forum/vie ... =2&t=20199
http://www.fieldherpforum.com/forum/vie ... =2&t=20076
http://www.fieldherpforum.com/forum/vie ... =2&t=19938
http://www.fieldherpforum.com/forum/vie ... 11&t=19760

I'll start with my Florida trip from last December

ImageGopher Tortoise and Habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageCorn Snake portrait by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageGopher Frogs at home by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageStarry Night in Central Florida by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSand Skink by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageHemidactylus portrait by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageDay Gecko on a palm by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageStriped Crayfish Snake portrait by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageTokay portrait by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageGolden Gecko portrait by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageStars over Picayune by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageDusky Pygmy Rattlesnake in situ by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEverglades Racer in situ by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageDusky Pygmy Rattlesnake in situ by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageOustalet's Chameleon by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

My FOY Snake of 2014 was a lifer to boot...Queen Snake in NC
ImageQueen Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

Some early spring amphibs
ImageMarbled Salamander and Vernal Pool by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSpring Peeper by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

My friend and I then made a few trips down to GA in March, and we were treated with these jewels

ImageEastern Indigo Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Indigo Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageJawga Gator by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Hognose crossing the road by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Hognose by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

We then focused heavily on NC later in the spring and summer

ImageNC Gator by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Coachwhip Periscoping by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageOuter Banks Kingsnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePine Barrens Treefrog by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageCarolina Pygmy Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageCanebrake Rattlesnake crossing the road by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePair of Northern Pine Snakes by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSouthern Hognosed Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageTop-down of a Carolina Pygmy Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageScarlet Kingsnake and habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageTop-down of a Southern Hognosed Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSouthern Hognosed Snake and habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageYonahlossee Salamander by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageCanebrake Rattlesnake crossing a road by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageRed-phase Carolina Pygmy Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

After that was a summer roadtrip to Arizona

ImagePortrait of a Speckled Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSouthwestern Speckled Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageWestern Diamondback Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSouthwestern Speckled Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageTiger Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePortrait of a Sonoran Lyresnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePortrait of a Spotted Leaf-nosed Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageVariable Sandsnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageTiger Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageMilky Way over Tonto National Forest by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageMohave Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePajarito Mountains by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageMohave Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSaddled Leaf-nosed Snake in threat posture by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageMohave Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageBanded Rock Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageBanded Rock Rattlesnake in ambush by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageGreen Rat Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePortrait of a Sonoran Coral Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSonoran Coral Snake on the crawl by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePortrait of a Sonoran Lyresnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

Following AZ, I went home to Michigan to visit the family and was able to sneak in some herping

ImagePrairie Fen in Southeast Michigan by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageBlue Spotted Salamander by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Massasauga Rattlesnake in situ by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Massasauga Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Fox Snake in habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageBlue Racer by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageBlue Racer in habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Fox Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePortrait of an Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Massasauga Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Massasauga Rattlesnake in habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

After that, I moved to Maryland for school, so of course I had to make some herp trips to PA and NJ.

ImageLong-tailed Salamander and habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePortrait of a Black-phase Timber Rattlesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageSpring Salamander and habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageTimber Rattlesnake on a trail by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageTimber Rattlesnake in a Mountain Stream by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageEastern Milk Snake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageBlack-phase Timber Rattlesnake in situ by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

Image"Pinebrake" in situ by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImagePortrait of a "Pinebrake" by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageNorthern Pinesnake by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageNorthern Pinesnake in habitat by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

After that, I made a quick trip back to NC for the Orianne PYNH5

ImageNorth Carolina "Cloud Forest" by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageWeller's Salamander by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageGreen Salamander by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

ImageGreen Salamander climbing a mossy rock face by santosh_shanmuga, on Flickr

That has pretty much been my herp year...can't wait for next year!

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Crazins
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by Crazins » December 12th, 2014, 10:40 am

Screw you and your Saddled leaf.

Great shots, Santosh. Very very well done. I like your use of shadows.

-M

chad ks
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by chad ks » December 12th, 2014, 10:44 am

If there was still a picture of the week...I would nominate your eastern coachwhip periscope shot in a heart beat. Great series, outstanding photography.

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Mike Pingleton
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by Mike Pingleton » December 12th, 2014, 10:50 am

chad ks wrote:If there was still a picture of the week...I would nominate your eastern coachwhip periscope shot in a heart beat. Great series, outstanding photography.
I am right there with you. That shot is sick.

Great work, Santosh.

-Mike

hellihooks
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by hellihooks » December 12th, 2014, 11:25 am

Wow... what a year! some great shots of iconic herps. And now I know (hopefully) what to call the dor king I found just inland in SC... an outer banks king? :) I find myself intrigued by the Sand Skink... can you elaborate and hopefully post more pics? again... great post...jim

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chris_mcmartin
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by chris_mcmartin » December 12th, 2014, 12:07 pm

Very, very nice.

:thumb:

frogfish
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by frogfish » December 12th, 2014, 4:40 pm

Thanks everyone! The coachwhip shot was probably my favorite capture of the year
hellihooks wrote:Wow... what a year! some great shots of iconic herps. And now I know (hopefully) what to call the dor king I found just inland in SC... an outer banks king? :) I find myself intrigued by the Sand Skink... can you elaborate and hopefully post more pics? again... great post...jim
The Outer Banks Kingsnake (L. g. sticticeps) is a subspecies found on Hatteras Island from Oregon Inlet Bridge south. A getula from SC is most likely just a regular eastern kingsnake (L. getula).

As for the Sand Skink (Neoseps reynoldsi, but I think it has recently been reclassified) is an Federally Threatened species endemic to the Lakes Wales, Winter Haven, and Mount Dora ridges of central FL. It is primarily adapted to spending its life a few inches under the sand. These guys are super neat and can disappear into the sand in a heart beat. We found two, but were only able to catch one...along with a blue-tailed mole skink.

Now to focus on feathered "herps" until its warm enough to herp again!

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pjfishpa
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by pjfishpa » December 12th, 2014, 5:40 pm

Agree w the coach pic! Great year for sure. Thanks for posting.

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Cole Grover
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by Cole Grover » December 12th, 2014, 6:00 pm

Nice spread!

Your first "Hemidactylus" is unquestionably a Tarentola. Better find, actually.

Cole

Rman
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by Rman » December 12th, 2014, 6:33 pm

Very nice! Thank you!

frogfish
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by frogfish » December 12th, 2014, 7:07 pm

Cole Grover wrote:Nice spread!

Your first "Hemidactylus" is unquestionably a Tarentola. Better find, actually.

Cole
Awesome thanks. My lizard ID skills are not the best lol

hellihooks
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by hellihooks » December 13th, 2014, 6:59 am

Thx for the info... I love skinks and the idea of one adapted to life in sand is way cool. only saw some small brown ones, on my one herping excursion through that general area... although I did find a Tx horned Lizard on the Isle of Palms, which was a surprize. The DOR king I found was on a bridge to some sort of 'Pirate themed amusement park'... i always just figured Eastern King... it sure looks a lot like the outer banks one you posted. actual different sub-species you say? interesting... thought they were all just differing morphs of the same species... :shock: jim

frogfish
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by frogfish » December 13th, 2014, 8:27 am

hellihooks wrote:Thx for the info... I love skinks and the idea of one adapted to life in sand is way cool. only saw some small brown ones, on my one herping excursion through that general area... although I did find a Tx horned Lizard on the Isle of Palms, which was a surprize. The DOR king I found was on a bridge to some sort of 'Pirate themed amusement park'... i always just figured Eastern King... it sure looks a lot like the outer banks one you posted. actual different sub-species you say? interesting... thought they were all just differing morphs of the same species... :shock: jim
Yea the OBX kings are a subspecies of their own, and found only on Hatteras Island. Many look very similar to their mainland eastern king compatriots but exhibit broken "chains links" in their pattern. The stunner OBX kings look nothing like a regular getula though! I found 8 OBX kings this past spring and here is one of the prettier ones

Image

Here is what a mainland king from just across pamlico sound looks like...notice the unbroken chain pattern. That is salt marsh in the background and one of my rainbow snake roads. I wonder how many rainbows this king has eaten over the course of its lifetime???
Image

hellihooks
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by hellihooks » December 13th, 2014, 2:48 pm

Wow... that obk is pretty trip...like a X tween a speckled and chain (from what little i know of eastern forms :roll: ) here's what I saw...I'll just go by what you say it is... :thumb:
Image
Image

NACairns
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by NACairns » December 13th, 2014, 7:46 pm

Wow what great shots. That is a diverse year. Did that Micruroides make you work for that portrait? Great stuff all round.
Thanks for sharing
Nick

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walk-about
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by walk-about » December 14th, 2014, 12:39 am

That Massasauga in the grass shot is just perfect! Also love the rock rattlers within their cryptic domain. Beautiful work indeed. I noticed you go with some fat ISO's and little 'flash on'. Interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Dave

frogfish
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Re: My real 2014 year in review...

Post by frogfish » December 14th, 2014, 10:05 am

NACairns wrote:Wow what great shots. That is a diverse year. Did that Micruroides make you work for that portrait? Great stuff all round.
Thanks for sharing
Nick
Thanks :) That Micruroides was a bitch to photograph haha
walk-about wrote:That Massasauga in the grass shot is just perfect! Also love the rock rattlers within their cryptic domain. Beautiful work indeed. I noticed you go with some fat ISO's and little 'flash on'. Interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Dave
Thanks so much! I loved the klaubs too, definitely my favorite finds from AZ.

The D610 is full frame so I don't mind pushing the ISO. I usually start getting discernible noise around ISO 1600. As for flash, I try to shoot with natural light as much as possible...but sometimes that just doesnt work haha.

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