Hocking Hills Herping with High School Students
The last weekend in April I accompanied the Independence High School Biology Society on their annual Spring Trip. The destination was Hocking Hills, located in south-central Ohio. This year the club is celebrating 50 years of exploring nature's wonders. "Back in the day" when I was a high school student, I was a member of this club. It's been a cool, rainy Spring, but that didn't stop 18 students from making the trip and checking things out.
Along the way Redbud was in bloom and easy to see from quite some distance.
After checking in, I took a quick walk behind our cabin and several types of wildflowers were in bloom as well, like Spring Beauty.
Common Blue Violet.
And Ohio's State Wildflower, White Trillium.
I checked out this little creek.
Two-lined Salamanders can be found on a pretty reliable basis in this area.
Slimy Salamanders were present as well.
In the evening the students went on a night hike and found these species, as well as Dusky and Longtail Salamanders.
On the following day I checked out this lake.
A Bullfrog that apparently didn't like the available natural habitat and decided to live in a canoe.
There were lots of Midland Painted Turtles out basking; the temperatures for the trip were in the 60s and 70s in the daytime.
This Snapping Turtle was kickin' it with the other turtles, enjoying the sunny weather.