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West Coast Herping Trip

This is a discussion on West Coast Herping Trip within the Field Herping Accounts forums, part of the Fieldwork / Fieldherping category; I recently went on a trip down the coast from Seattle to San Jose, to do some herping and meetup ...

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Old 21st March 2017   #1 (permalink)
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Talking West Coast Herping Trip

I recently went on a trip down the coast from Seattle to San Jose, to do some herping and meetup with a few friends (AdvythAF being one).
I wasn't able to do as much herping as originally planned, as unexpected snow prevented me from going to two of the major parks i was hoping to visit.

Nonetheless, i was able to find some cool herps, and several lifers/new species for me!

Batrachoseps attenuatus
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Aneides flavipuncatus flavipunctatus juvenile, first one for me! These guys are amazing, tons of little gold and blue flecks.
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Ensatina eschscholtzii oregonensis/xanthoptica hybrid juvenile. Again, this guy was really pretty. Nicer than the pure oregonensis i find here
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Ensatina eschscholtzii xanthoptica male, found right next to a female (next pic) under a tarp
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Heres the female
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And here, here is something i've been wanting to see for 5 years, and put dozens of hours searching into. Finally, i was able to find breeding Taricha granulosa (with the help of a friend!). And a mating ball, at that! I should note however that i did actually see breeding newts before this herping with Advyth, but my pictures are in the wrong order and i don't feel like fixing it so i'll just leave it haha
Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.
Ambystoma gracile egg masses, found in a very unusual spot! Usually they breed in larger and deeper bodies of water than this (habitat shot below)
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Habitat shot
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And here is another lifer, two juvenile Plethodon elongatus. Very similar to the Plethodon vehiculum that i find, but a bit different and very cool none the less
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Habitat shot for the elongatus
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More Batrachoseps attenuatus
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And more attentuatus, 3 under one rock, and a scorpion!
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This was a very cool find as well. I had seen some aquatic males before this, but this was my first terrestrial Taricha torosa find ever (i like the terrestrial females a lot). This thing was HUGE. By far the biggest female Taricha i've seen. Length wise it was probably around 5 1/2 inches but its girth and build were way bigger than the granulosa i find
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And heres the first i'd ever found, a male in breeding condition. He was pretty awesome, and a decent size
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Heres another T. torosa but this one is a juvenile. It had way more granulated skin than the female i found
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Here are two shots of an abberant male T. granulosa i found
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Male granulosa in breeding condition. Look at those swollen legs!
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Heres an interesting one. This male granulosa had half his tail missing! Poor dude couldn't swim and had to walk along the bottom of the pond. Whatever bit his tail off won't get the chance to apologize, that's for sure
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Click the image to open in full size.


And that's it! I've got loads more photos but most of them are pretty similar to these.
It was a blast finding new species and so much stuff, as well as meeting up with some new people (2 of which are Caudata.org members).
Thanks to AdvythAF (Advyth) for helping me find some torosa and xanthoptica!

Hopefully my next trip will take me to Idaho

-Seth
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Old 21st March 2017   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: West Coast Herping Trip

haha, going to tag on to Seth's post, here are some more pics of the stuff we found herping.

Yellow-Eyed Ensatina
Click the image to open in full size.P1060556 by Advyth Ramachandran, on Flickr

Click the image to open in full size.P1060578 by Advyth Ramachandran, on Flickr

Click the image to open in full size.P1060579 by Advyth Ramachandran, on Flickr

Click the image to open in full size.P1060586 by Advyth Ramachandran, on Flickr


Habitat shot
Click the image to open in full size.P1060604 by Advyth Ramachandran, on Flickr

T. granulosa caught in the water.
Click the image to open in full size.P1060613 by Advyth Ramachandran, on Flickr
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Old 21st March 2017   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: West Coast Herping Trip

[/QUOTE]T. granulosa caught in the water.
Click the image to open in full size.P1060613 by Advyth Ramachandran, on Flickr[/QUOTE]

Oh wow I didn't see you caught a female, wish I would've noticed that
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Old 21st March 2017   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: West Coast Herping Trip

Nice stuff, guys! Great Ensatinas and Newts, especially. I've got to make out to the West Coast one of these days to do some serious herping! Nice stuff, and if you ever make it out east to Appalachia, shoot me a message.
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Old 21st March 2017   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: West Coast Herping Trip

Nice thread! I do wonder what made that one newt loose its tail, maybe a garter snake had bitten it's tail, but the newt managed to escape? Still nice herps anyways
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