The Mary River Catchment Coordinating Committee (MRCCC) is embarking on a brand new program this February. ‘Find a Frog in February’ is a citizen science program that encourages all people to get outside, find frogs and send their information in to the MRCCC.
The area covered by the program is from Burrum Heads to Peregian, west to Mt Walsh and Kilkivan and east to the coast, including Fraser Island. This area includes the Mary, Noosa and Burrum River catchments and all the coastal streams and wetlands. It is supported by the Sunshine Coast, Noosa and Gympie Councils and the Burnet Mary Regional Group – a fantastic collective contribution.
We have over frog 40 species that live within this area and 10 of these are either extinct or threatened, mainly due to habitat loss and disease. Frogs can be the ‘canary in the coal mine’; telling us of changes in our ecosystems, from rainforests, to wallum and urban areas. We need to know more about the whereabouts of many species across this broad area so we can better look after them. ‘Initially we are aiming for 1000 sightings’ Eva Ford from the MRCCC said, ‘and then we can aim even higher!’
‘We can identify the frogs from photographs, recordings of calls or good descriptions’ Eva said. We need the information to be reliable so it can be used with great certainty. The information is all stored in the State Government’s WildNet database where it can be accessed by researchers, planners and members of the public.