Frog Whispering (kind of!!!!)
posted July 30th, 2012
Identifying local frogs by their calls is easy once you learn the calls. Making frogs call on command (sometimes!!!) takes some trickery. A male Blanchard's cricket frog (Acris blanchardi) makes a series of rapid clicks that sound like "gick, gick, gick ..." Duplicating this call is easily done by clicking a toy or dog training clicker.
The clicker is easily distinguished from the call of the frog as is illustrated in the first instance on the YouTube video of my clicking and the frog responding. The frog heard in the clip was not calling prior to my clicking of the dog training clicker. There are times when the cricket frog does not respond immediately. Towards the end of the clip, the frog and I synch very well. The longer duration between my clicks may give the frog a chance to "catch its breath." Actually since this is near the end of the cricket frog breeding season, males might be more reluctant to call and when they do respond they do not call for a long period of time. Thanks to the prompting of the dog clicker, I know that cricket frogs inhabit this lake. Any day that we detect a new population of this declining species is a good day.