Gavin’s Frog Log

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Entertainment Column

I find myself at a bittersweet conclusion. What a year. I created the frog log for frog enthusiasts to have an interesting place to get reliable information and fun stories pertaining to these amphibians. While sad, something isn’t beautiful because it lasts. Love, loss, life, and death can all be learned from frogs, and observed in humans. With a heavy hand I mark these biweekly accounts, and I am forever grateful to have had residency in this publication. That being said, hello readers and fans alike! I hope all of you are enjoying the outdoors as we closely approach summer, and are eager to hear the alluring ambience of a pale summer night’s croaks.

Before we get into our species of the column, let’s find out more about frogs’ sound effects in the summer. Male frogs croak in the summer in order to woo females. While it may sound like singing, what is actually happening is very complex. As air from their lungs vibrates their vocal chords in the larynx, the resulting sounds are amplified in expandable vocal sacs in the mouth and throat that function like loudspeakers. What’s also fascinating is that the male specimens spread themselves out evenly amongst the breeding grounds near water to croak in choir. Females are able to pick out the specific call of their species without fail. So suffice it to say, hearing the summertimes means some frogs are going to get croaky.

With our closing issue, I would like to examine one of my favorite frogs of all time: The Vietnamese mossy frog. Easily mistaken for vegetation, these frogs blend in to look like 3.5 inch long clumps of moss. This texture looks as though it is consuming a frog underneath, a facade of the surrounding environment reflected on the creature. They find meals in crickets, cockroaches, and earthworms. Inhibiting various deep greens, these frogs definitely live up to their title.

In honor of Asian Pacific Islander Heritage month, we will also be learning about Zhao Ermi. He was from Chengdu, capital of the Sichuan Province in China, and graduated from Huaxi University in 1951. Ermi described and named 38 new series (or sub-series) of amphibians and reptiles and two new genera of amphibians. He was also one of the first amphibian and reptile scholars to enter Tibet for investigation purposes. As if he wasn’t enough of a trailblazer already, Ermi was also the first to add a new “sub-area of the south slope of the Himalayas” to the southwest area in animal geographic divisions, mainly according to the distribution of reptiles. 

Alas, we come to a conclusion. To make this sum supple, think about your future frog learning. Perhaps it doesn’t go further than glancing at a couple specimens in a zoo, perhaps you go into the wilderness and flip logs to find a Foothill yellow legged. Whatever the case may be, I implore you to keep frogs in your lives and hearts.