Our first instalment for Focus on Frogs in November is a good news story. So often we hear about the desperate plight of frogs, which is confronting and sometimes paralysing. While we still need to act, it is nice to know that some frogs have been able to survive the onslaught of habitat loss, disease, introduced predators, competitors and the myriad of pollutants in our waterways. In suburban Melbourne, some frogs have survived in little pockets of habitat, refuges in the urban jungle. Even Melbourne's CBD has frogs and more local to me is the highly urbanised City of Glen Eira. There are no waterways, but there is one park which has an area that holds water after heavy rain,. After this fabulous spring rain, I recently recorded Eastern Banjo Frogs (Pobblebonks), Common Froglets and Southern Brown Tree Frogs!
Eastern Banjo Frogs are a large, robust frog. They can move large distances if needed and burrow to find shelter and refuge, which may help them survive the drier periods. Southern Brown Tree Frogs and Common Froglets, will breed all year round, I have recorded both species calling in 4 degrees Celsius in the middle of winter! This allows them an advantage to make the most of an ephemeral pond over winter for breeding, when others are sleeping the winter away.
I have spent a lot of time looking for frogs in urban areas, so I know they are out there, nonetheless it is always exciting to hear them within the inner Melbourne suburbs. I hope you can find frogs in your local area and enjoy the evening chorus of frogs, which is such an iconic sound of the Aussie bush, but one we can hear in the suburbs too.