Herpetology B/C

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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby Unome » September 16th, 2017, 1:03 pm

Hey everyone!

I was a little confused about how identification would work in Herpetology. I was an Invasive Main for two years, and identification in Invasives was simple enough as each species was separate. You were shown a picture of, say, Rock Snot, and that was that.
However, in Herpetology, if you were shown a picture of, say, a Box Turtle, you would only identify it as a "Box Turtle" and not Common Box Turtle, Spotted Box Turtle, Eastern Box Turtle, etc.

Which brings me to my question. How would one go about making a binder for this event? For Invasives, there'd be an entry for, say, Asian Citrus Psyllid, and then Brown Marmorated Stink Bug, and so on. However, for Herps, identification seems vastly different, and I am at a loss for how to correctly make a binder to account for all the different species.

Organizing by "Common Name" on the list (i.e. one entry for Box Turtles, then Western Pond Turtles, and so on) seems like it might make sense, other than the fact that there are a TON of different Box Turtles, each with their individual distributions, anatomy, repdroduction, etc., and one factsheet for Box Turtles would have to contain individual information for a bunch of different kinds of Box Turtles.

Any help, ideas, or wisdom are appreciated. Thanks!
I'd say to do all the ID stuff up to the level on the list (i.e. if there was a picture of a box turtle just put box turtle).
But I have no idea about the third paragraph. That's a good question.
For the last, I'd recommend focusing on the genera and making note of species-specific info only if there are some prominent species or a small number of them.
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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby gneissisnice » September 18th, 2017, 4:57 am


I noticed that it says "or" rather than "and" in reference to a binder and field guide. In previous taxonomy competitions I believe both have been allowed simultaneously; teams would be allowed to have a binder AND a field guide. Why the change?
I'm guessing the national committee wants to change the way ID events are done. I mean for biologic ID events it was always 1 sheet of notes and a field guide but they changed that with invasives because there was no field guide. I'm guessing they liked how the event turned out with the binder and want to change the strategy for ID events. The only events that used to have the field guide and binder were the geologic ID event and in 2017 they got rid of the field guide for rocks. Personally, I think it's a very interesting change to the rules because now teams have to decide which resource they want to use and how they are going to deal with the shortcomings of each resource.
Not always.

Back in my day, I believe they were full binder events. I did Forestry, Entomology, and Herpetology with binders. In my senior year (2009), Herpetology was changed to ONLY a field guide, no binder and no note sheet at all. Note sheets were added after that, and then Invasives was a binder because there aren't any field guides that have everything you need for that event.

So it's changed around a bunch of times. Personally, I think binders are always better because you have to decide what information goes into it and part of the difficult of the event is preparation. That being said, I know some of the Bio ID events will base themselves off of specific field guides and defer to that one in the case of conflicting information, so it's probably a good idea to get the field guide anyway to help make your binder.
2009 events:
Fossils: 1st @ reg. 3rd @ states (stupid dinosaurs...) 5th @ nats.
Dynamic: 1st @ reg. 19thish @ states, 18th @ nats
Herpetology (NOT the study of herpes): NA
Enviro Chem: 39th @ states =(
Cell Bio: 9th @ reg. 18th @ nats
Remote: 6th @ states 3rd @ Nats
Ecology: 5th @ Nats

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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby CVMSAvalacheStudent » September 23rd, 2017, 4:39 pm

Isn't herpetology the study of herpes? :D
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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby gavinnupp » September 25th, 2017, 5:37 am

Isn't herpetology the study of herpes? :D
No, It's the study of Her Pets, or human female-animal social dynamics.
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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby Froggie » September 25th, 2017, 2:52 pm

Question: Are torrent salamanders and seep salamanders the same? I can't find any information about seep salamanders.
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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby dvegadvol » September 25th, 2017, 7:49 pm

Yes they are: Rhyacotritonidae family. In Peterson Western Reptiles and Amphibians pages 161-2

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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby Froggie » September 30th, 2017, 7:34 am

Question #2: Let's say you get a picture of the milk snake on a test. If you put king snake would the proctors mark it correct? Because milk snake is a type of king snake.
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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby dvegadvol » September 30th, 2017, 3:03 pm

While they're both genus Lampropeltis, there are 69 sub-species (45 king & 24 milk, iirc) in that genus, so a "generic" milk snake is not a king snake or vice versa. However, if you identified it as Lampropeltis, and missed or left out the species, I think you'd at least get partial credit. A good question would be comparing certain Lampropeltis species to Elapidae species...

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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby Froggie » October 1st, 2017, 7:47 am

While they're both genus Lampropeltis, there are 69 sub-species (45 king & 24 milk, iirc) in that genus, so a "generic" milk snake is not a king snake or vice versa. However, if you identified it as Lampropeltis, and missed or left out the species, I think you'd at least get partial credit. A good question would be comparing certain Lampropeltis species to Elapidae species...
Oh I thought milk snake was a type of king snake...
That clears everything up, thanks. :)
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Re: Herpetology B/C

Postby Ravenclaw1 » October 14th, 2017, 12:14 pm

I know this was already asked by Kenshi, but I just want to ask for clarification. For some of the species it has the genus and then the common name, but for common name it has one of the many species in that genus. For example the genus Ramphotyphlops includes many different species such as the Palau blind snake and the southern blind snake. But for common name on the list it says brahminy blind snake. So when making my fact sheet should I just do one for the genus Ramphotyphlops, just for the brahminy blind snake, or does it mean it can ask about any Ramphotyphlops species but it'll focus on the brahminy blind snake?


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