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Catching technique?

This is a discussion on Catching technique? within the Field Herping Discussion forums, part of the Fieldwork / Fieldherping category; I was wondering how members here caught aquatic species of caudates such as notos or larvae in lakes and ponds. ...

Field Herping Discussion Discuss Field Herping and ask questions about techniques, how to observe certain animals, what kind of habitats they inhabit, etc. Do not post field herping accounts in this sub-topic.

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Old 27th August 2008   #1 (permalink)
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Default Catching technique?

I was wondering how members here caught aquatic species of caudates such as notos or larvae in lakes and ponds. Is it just a dip net in a hope for the best or are there any tricks and tips to being sucessful?



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Old 28th August 2008   #2 (permalink)
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Arrow Re: Catching technique?

Well I don't want to brag,,, but I recently caught some larvae in france from a pond bank with nothing but my bare hands. You can't use speed though, its a slow, gradual scooping of the larva from below and raising it slowly out of the water. Nets are going to be an easy option though, I'm just showing off.
Then I took photos of them in my polarizing filter case, which brings me onto the use of polarizing sunglasses for seeing through water, or camera filters for shooting through water..



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Old 28th August 2008   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Catching technique?

Good strong dipnet with a flat edge on the end.



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Old 28th August 2008   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Catching technique?

It is forbidden for us to catch local newts, but years ago I sometimes went out to catch Lissotriton vulgaris with my friends, and we'd just sit at the pond edge, staring at the surface. When a newt went to gulp some air, you'd see a slight bulge in the water surface. Then, we'd quickly put a net (something like John described) about 10 to 20 cm underneath the water surface, pull it up et voila...worked 9 out of 10 times.



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Old 28th August 2008   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Catching technique?

For some larvae, grabbing a few handfulls (handsfull?) of wet leaf litter and putting it in a shallow pan of water for sorting works well. This is a common technique for sampling aquatic insects, but works great for caudates too (Pseudotriton, Eurycea, Hemidactylium, Gyrinophilus, Desmognathus, etc.).

-Tim



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Old 28th August 2008   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Catching technique?

I usually use just my hands, because i tend to be un-prepared xDD Otherwise i use a jar and scare them into it, or a net.
In particularly deep water or with a difficult access i use a stick. It takes a lot of pacience but you can actually lift the newt with the stick up to the surface and catch it.

The easiest way is always the net though.



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Old 28th August 2008   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Catching technique?

I find dip-netting the leaflitter off the bottom of sloughs in the winter here in GA produces a bucket load of notos.



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Old 30th August 2008   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Catching technique?

Thanks for all of the replies, sorry I could't post sooner as I was away.

And to all of you who have caught them with your hands, thats intense.



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Old 30th September 2008   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Catching technique?

I know this threads a little old but I thought I would add that I have had great luck using the cone style minnow traps. The trick with it seems to be the correctly placing it where you would anticipate the larvae to be, along undercut banks, submerged logs, leaf piles, etc. I also throw in a couple of salmon pellets and that seems to help too.



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