The Columbia Gorge Ecology Institute and Henkle Middle School just completed our 5th annual Amphibian Surveys at Snowden Wetlands. Even though the mornings were chilly and the water downright freezing, the rain held off and everyone had a blast.
Students observed egg masses from Pacific Tree Frogs, Northern Red Legged Frogs, Long-Toed Salamanders, and Northwestern Salamanders.
The experience was succinctly summarized by a student on the final field trip. After pulled a Northwestern Salamander egg mass from a pond with great excitement and placing it in a student’s hands. “Wow!” said the student. “So this is why you love amphibians! I get it now!”
Actually, that moment pretty much sums up all of place-based education, the purpose of Gorge Ecology, and the reason why Gorge Ecology staff comes to work in the morning!