Sunday, 16 March 2014

Panama: January 2010 (part 10)

Part 1 - Gamboa lowlands and Pipeline Road
Part 2 - Road-cruising and night-hiking at El Valle de Anton
Part 3 - More from El Valle de Anton
Part 4 - Creek-walking in El Valle de Anton
Part 5 - A brand new species for science!
Part 6 - Snakes and interesting frogs at El Valle de Anton
Part 7 - Night-hiking at El Valle de Anton
Part 8 - El Cope
Part 9 - El Cope, again
Part 10 - Back to El Valle de Anton
Part 11 - Night-hiking at Pipeline Road

As our trip neared its finale, Jon and I left El Cope and made our way back to El Valle and a few other areas for a last day or two of hiking.

One area we checked out was located on the road into El Valle. It was lower in elevation and consisted of the fairly dry riparian corridor flanking a moderately sized stream. It was here that we found two species of parrot snake.

There are three species of parrot snake in Panama and two found in this part of the country. The Satiny Parrot Snake (Leptophis depressirostrus) and the Green Parrot Snake (Leptophis ahaetulla) can both be found in the same habitat. We ended up seeing a total of five parrot snake in a few hours!

Leptophis ahaetulla - Green Parrot Snake

Comparison shot of the two very similar species. Note the six sub-ocular (below the eye) scales from the eye forward to the rostrum in the larger L. ahaetulla, compared to only five in L. depressirostrus. It gives the latter the appearance of a shorter head, with the eye located closer towards the front.

Leptophis ahaetulla on left, L. depressirostrus on right

Leptophis ahaetulla - Green Parrot Snake

Leptophis scalation

One afternoon, Jon and I checked out a stream in an area that we hadn't thoroughly herped yet.  It was just a quick stop as we traveled from El Cope back towards El Valle if I recall, and we were only going to check a few hundred meters of stream. That is, until we found some salamanders! The below species is Oedipena complex, the common species of that genus found in this part of Panama.

Oedipena complex - Gamboa Worm Salamander

Oedipena complex - Gamboa Worm Salamander

Towards the end of the trip, Jon and I were invited to the wedding of a herper that we both knew. While at the wedding we met some of the other guests, including two herpers from the southern US (Arkansas, I think?). We invited them out to a place that we had visited earlier in the trip, a.k.a. Jon's Green-and-back Dart Frog locale. We had also seen a False Fer-de-lance and Speckled Racer here.

The visit was a success and we saw a wide diversity of species, though no snakes of any kind.

Norops oxylophus - Stream Anole


Engystomops pustulosus - Tungara Frog

Norops limifrons - Slender Anole

Norops limifrons - Slender Anole

Basiliscus basiliscus - Brown Basilisk

1 comment:

Corey said...

Looks like you had a great time Josh, I look foreword to seeing the herps you turn up in Ontario this year.