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The first months of 2011 has seen much needed rains on the reserve. And with rain comes the emergence of multiple amphibians. During the winter, or dry season, they are not as present as amphibians and reptiles go through a process called aestivation. (In cold habitats some animals go through hibernation while in drier habitats wildlife that needs moisture will go through a similar type slumber – aestivation.) As the sun goes down after drive during the summer, or wet season, one will hear a symphony of excited amphibians chorusing into the night in celebration of territory, calling to a prospective mate, or squeaking out an alarm call.
One poignant and distractive call is that of the Banded Rubber Frog. The constant “brrrrrrrrr” like that of an old telephone can be heard in amongst the “plop-plop” of the Bubbling Cassinas. The Banded Rubber Frog is one of South Africa’s poisonous, or toxic, Frogs. But do not be alarmed, the only way this toxin can get into the body is if one were to eat it. It has distinctive black and red coloration known as Aposmatic Coloration, or Warning Colors. As guests go to bed, after a day filled with wildlife and good food, these frogs lull one to sleep, as the African night sky twinkles above.

By: Noelle DiLorenzo – River Lodge Ranger

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