sábado, 16 de noviembre de 2013

A rediscovery of one critically endangered frog

Psychrophrynella illimani a critically endangered species
Psychrophrynella Illimani is one critically endangered species that is present just in Bolivia, it was found in 2002 and described in 2009 with just a couple of individuals, since 2002 were different attempts to find more individuals in the area, but it was not possible to find more individuals. In 2013 Jampatu project with Bolivian amphibian initiative together with the Museo de Historia Natural Alcide d’Orbigny organized an strategy to try to find this species and also to try to obtain new locations and also information about natural history of this very poorly known species.
a male taking care of the offspring
For this purpose in August we went for the first time to the area to talk with local communities and to present the project, since then we were able to go back every month and now after a couple of months working in the area with a joint team we have news!
variation in coloration of the species
We found the species in the area! Not just that, we found more locations where the species is present and also we got a lot of data about the natural history of the species.

Now after some work with the species we have more data but also more questions and we plan to keep working with this joint project to try to understand and to work with local communities for the threatened amphibians of Bolivia.

P. illimani in the type locality

domingo, 20 de octubre de 2013

High Andean Amphibian Course

Activities in groups for the course

Just one week ago finished the 3rd high Andean amphibian course in Sorata, Bolivia. This was a great opportunity to join enthusiastic people working and with the desire to work with amphibians. It was a great experience where we did not just shared our knowledge together with the Jampatu project, but also it was an opportunity to talk and to start a network of people working for amphibians in different parts not just from Bolivia but also from other countries such as Peru and Argentina.
Activities outside
We had this time the support for different amphibian researchers with a lot of experience working in Bolivia, they helped us with very interesting lectures that gave the participants a wide idea of the amphibian work.
working with frogs
learning new tools for amphibian work

We also learned a lot from the people that were able to participate in this course and of course it was an experience that charged our batteries to work with amphibian conservation.

Learning about water quality
and more activities to learn about conservation work
This kind of courses we are developing once a year and we are looking forward to join more new people that want to work with amphibians.

The 3rd High Andean Amphibian Conservation course participants

lunes, 26 de agosto de 2013

field work with amphibians

Visit to the area of a critically endangered frog (Psychrophrynella illimani)
Obtaining data in different seasons is important to understand the natural history and habitat requirements of the different species of amphibians. These changes can have an important effect in amphibians, not just temperature change but also water quality during the rainy season can change a lot, structure of water bodies or presence of water also can change. 
Habitat of Psychrophrynella illimani a critically endangered frog

The strategies of the different species are also different and those things we want to study. We are already going to several sites in Bolivia to understand better these changes.

obtaining data of the habitat of one aquatic frog (Telmatobius sp.)
We found that some of the streams can change a lot in the hardness and alkalinity but some others do not change at all. In some areas one can find streams covered with ice, but tadpoles and frogs still active in the bottom of the stream. We also are starting to use some tools to understand better the species using underwater cameras, data loggers and others that provide us information that will be very useful for the future.

Tadpoles of Telmatobius sp. in one stream of the Bolivian Andes

sábado, 15 de junio de 2013

High Andean Amphibian Conservation Course 2013

Now we organize for October 2013 the High Andean Amphibian Conservation Course that will be carried out in Sorata Bolivia. for more information please visit us at: http://bolivianamphibianinitiative.org/curso

Do not forget the deadline is July 10.

lunes, 28 de enero de 2013

Problems with a critically endangered frog

A Titicaca water frog (Telmatobius culeus) in the rocks

Once again we went back to Titicaca Lake to work, This time to monitor the critically endangered Titicaca Water frog Telmatobius culeus and to take samples of Chytridium  for the project that we are involved and to obtain data about this species. We worked with our team of students and volunteers during several days, this allowed us to obtain more data from different sites. We found some sites with very few individuals but also other with several. With this research we try to obtain data about where are the best populations in the lake.

trapping frogs in the lake to take Chytrid samples

A very shocking finding was that in some localities we found several dead individuals, in one locality we found almost 50% of the individuals dead; it was impressing to find just dead frogs and several individuals that were dying.
one of our sites with dead frogs

We would like to know what is the problem. For this reason we request the help from people, universities or laboratories that can help us with this, to try to find out the cause, to be able to act now in a correct way to avoid more problems.
more dead frogs in the lake
We hope that this is an isolated case and that the problem will not expand. We have some time, we can do things and we can try to work with this problem together.

Conservation projects together

Meeting of different projects 
To share experiences with different projects from different places of Bolivia and Peru was one of our last activities, this time with the Rufford Small Grants, our main supporter that organized a meeting of their different projects in both countries, it was a great opportunity to learn about other projects and also to learn how can we improve our work to have a better impact. Due that this meeting was carried out in Titicaca lake we took the advantage to take the group to one of our study sites and we were able to show them the work that we carry out and also one of the species we work with.
Visit of different projects to our studysite

It was also an opportunity to involve more the local community in the project and also in that way they realize that there are more conservationists working with endangered animals and that their role as local communities is very important.
Members of the different projects in Sicuani, one of our sites where we work