The Atlantic Rainforest is what could be called « The Forgotten Rainforest ». This piece of rainforest is one of the most threatened forests in the world. Very few herpers have heard about the Atlantic Rainforest and let alone explored it!
Our team was asked to set up a 7-day exploratory trip for Bob Ferguson to know firsthand some of the most biodiverse reserves located south of São Paulo. The Intervales State Park and the Carlos Botelho State Park were the two major highlights from the herping trip. We eventually stayed 2 nights at a bird lodge to add some fun birdwatching and do some extra herping outings.
February is yet a good time to hit the southeastern Atlantic Rainforest, so we kept our expectations high. We definitely wanted to see some of the most iconic – and poorly known – species from these locations: Macrogenioglottus alipoi, Dendrophryniscus brevopillicatus, Procertatophrys boiei, Phylomedusa distincta, and many other hoppy creatures.
Each park we explored delivered a reasonable amount of herps, mostly amphibians. We found 18 herps at the Intervales State Park, and 13 herps at the Carlos Botelho State Park. We also spotted 5 species of herps at the bird lodge.
Although conditions weren’t optimal for snakes, we still found some cool, rare and very hard to find critters, including the Macrogenioglottus alipoi, the Leptodactylus flavopictus, the Gastrotheca microdiscus, and the Phasmahyla cochranae! That was all about quality, not quantity. Bob Ferguson spent a good deal of time photographing the different reptiles and amphibians we came across. He also enjoyed the bird diversity that the southeastern Atlantic Rainforest has to offer.
The Expedition wasn’t easy as we hiked hard, sometimes up to 7 miles a day, but eventually that was a helluva trip. It delivered incredible amphibians, beautiful habitats, and pristine environments!