Calling Frog Survey, Report 2

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The Calling Frog Survey utilizes the help of educated volunteers each spring to collect and submit data on amphibian populations in northern Illinois. In 2014, the Chicago Academy of Sciences and its Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum became home to the program. The Lincoln Park Conservancy is excited to contribute a small team of volunteers and 2023 marks the first time data has been collected in the Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool. It will also be exciting to observe frog population changes at North Pond as restoration work there continues.

The report below is from our second frog monitoring foray. Stay tuned for reports from future monitoring sessions in upcoming newsletters.

Survey Notes:

Thursday, May 11, 2023. Overcast, light winds, cool. Listening began one half hour after sunset at 8:30 p.m. 


Amelia Pollock, Manager of Docent Programs, Maeve Callaghan, Manager of Park Stewardship, Heather Bond, Conservatory and Lily Pool Docent 


One listening point at Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool. Three listening points at North Pond Nature Sanctuary

This evening’s atmosphere was magical. We could feel the weather wanting to turn into summer and the wildlife was out on patrol. There were plenty of black-crowned night herons and one great blue heron flying over the Lily Pool. We also saw a large mystery creature dunk under the water, with a big splash and a flash of white, and never resurface. We heard one lone banjo twang of a green frog, even though we know there are both green and bullfrogs present in the Pool. They will probably begin to call more later in the season. At North Pond, we saw a pair of Canada Geese with their goslings going for an evening swim, as well as mallards—who still pursued us for snacks in the dark—along with plenty of bats, rats, and the brand-new baby beaver, also out for an evening dip. Mom must have been close by. At the north end of North Pond, we may have seen two green frogs hopping away from us in the marshy area near North Pond Restaurant, but by the time we had lights on them they were out of sight. No luck with any other frog calls.

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