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Welcome to the first feature edition of FrogLog. With this issue, we wanted to highlight some of the amazing ways in which people are helping to spread the word about amphibian conservation and show what they are doing to assist with conservation efforts on the ground.
The success stories and the whole feel-good factor need greater exposure in the media. It’s about giving the frogs and newts a leading role. It’s about giving the people behind the conservation success stories center stage as well. Because there are a lot of success stories—we’re just not hearing about them. And this is exactly what this edition is about.
Once people have been inspired, they will then want to do what they can do to help amphibians. This might just prove to be the most powerful conservation tool at our disposal. The organizations featured in this edition are doing just that and it is our honor and pleasure to share their work with our readers.
In this edition you will read many inspiring stories including an article from Avalon Theisen, an 11 year old hero of amphibians, who started her own charity to help raise awareness of amphibian conservation issues. There are a number of articles that look at new and innovative ways of engaging the wider community including articles from ARKive, Meet Your Neighbours and ASG’s own Robin Moore who recently co-founded Frame of Mind, an initiative connecting people with their natural and cultural worlds through photography and visual storytelling. You will also see a few articles focused on the use of frogs in research and education.
As always we have also included a range of other updates from the Amphibian Conservation Community, including an article from the ASA announcing their new Executive Director, a call for submissions to Alytes, the latest news of the ASG/ARMI Seed Grant winners of 2012 and much, much more.
As the new Program Officer with the Amphibian Specialist Group, it is an honor for me to be writing the editorial for this edition of FrogLog. I bring to the ASG a bit of a different background than some might expect. I am not a biologist—I hold degrees in Geography and GIS. But having grown up in West Africa, Pakistan and India, as well as travelling throughout the world, I bring a lifelong passion for amphibians, creatures typically overlooked in mainstream media, to the ASG. I have taken every opportunity in life to inspire people to protect amphibians both in and beyond their own backyards. With this background, I look forward to assisting with the identification, development and management of communication strategies and media projects designed to build understanding and support for the ASG’s strategic priorities.
We hope that stories and features in this edition will inspire and motivate you in one way or another. Keep us posted on what you are doing and let us know how we can help you get the word out.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
NEWS FROM THE AMPHIBIAN COMMUNITY
4 ASA Partners with Global Wildlife Conservation to Drive Forward Global Collaborative Efforts to Save Amphibians
4 Alytes: A call for an increased batrachology forum
5 The Amphibian Red List Authority is Re-structuring
6 ASG/ARMI Seed Grant Winners 2012
10 Tapping in to Amphibian Conservation
12 Novel Biotechnologies Prove Winners in Giant Salamander Conservation
16 Hello Neighbour! Why Conservation Begins at Home
19 The Sticky Tongue Project—Sticking Amphibians To Your Screen
23 Biodiversity PEEK Photography Educating and Empowering Kids and their Communities
25 ARKIVE Inspiring the Conservationists of Tomorrow
28 Reconnecting with Nature in Haiti
34 Producing the Field Guides to the Yachana Reserve, in the Ecuadorian Amazon “Volunteering to Inspire Near and Far”
37 Froglife—Engaging Diverse Audiences in Amphibian Conservation
40 Conserve It Forward
42 Frog Education at the Student Level
44 Building Educator Capacity for Amphibian Conservation—The Houston Toad Teacher Workshop
47 Amphibian and Reptile Groups of the UK
49 Scientific School Work of Amphibian Monitoring in Patagonia
50 South Africa’s First National Awareness Day for Frogs: 1st December 2012
51 Arizona Leopard Frog Conservation as an Educational Outreach Tool
54 Western Toads as Wildlife Ambassadors
55 Educative and Participative Amphibian Monitoring For a Wider and More Effective Conservation
58 Amphibians in India and Their Role in Animal Science Teaching
59 The Cane Toad in Experimental Physiology and Pharmacology
61 Frogs Boom, but Bite the Dust
61 Thoughts on the Abolition of Dissections in Biological Science
62 Is Frog Dissection Essential for Life Science Teaching? The Dissection Controversy