05-12-11 Field Note: Cronartium Ribicola Aecia Collection, Tadpoles, Ring-necked Ducks, and Wildflowers

Lorinda Hunt's field note depicts the continued battle against Cronartium ribicola (blister rust), the growth stages of the Columbia spotted frog, and other signs of spring.

Posted on 5/12/2011 by Lorinda Bullington

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Field Guide Entries: 

Ring-necked Duck
Columbia Spotted Frog
 MPG North Field Note: Aecia collections, tadpoles, ring-necked ducks and spring violets. May 13, 2011 Lorinda Hunt
 We excised all evidence of infection from this white pine again this year, using a sterile scalpel (left). Canker excision methods should reduce mortality of infected pines and help manage blister rust disease.
olumbia spotted frogs, (Rana luteiventris), swam around the marsh as we fixed exclosures. A pile lodgepole cuttings from last year provide them with adequate shelter whenever they sense danger. 
Columbia spotted frogs typically lay their eggs in early spring, in a single location at the edge of ponds or marshy areas. Four masses of eggs outlined the north edge of the entrance pond. A more mature group of eggs just started to hatch and small tadpoles wriggle about at the surface (above). The young tadpoles feed off algae that has grown around the eggs. They will metamorphosize throughout the summer, and if lucky, reach adulthood in two to three years.
One female and two male ring-necked ducks, (Aytha collaris), occupy home pond. They feed on tubers, seeds and leaves of wetland plants such as sedges (image 7), and sometimes aquatic invertebrates as well.
 Last week’s rain brought new spring flowers to the property. Alpine marsh violet, (Viola palustris, top), and round-leaved yellow violet, (Viola orbiculata, bottom left), occurred throughout the property. Near the entrance marsh, many new field horsetails, (Equisetum arvense, bottom right), began to shoot up.