Amphibians spend part of their lives on land and part in the water, which means they are essential for both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. Juvenile amphibians cycle nutrients in aquatic environments by consuming plant matter and small invertebrates. Adults provide natural pest control and are important food sources for larger critters as well. Learn about some of the #amazingamphibians native to North Carolina on CWEP’s social media:
Did you know that many amphibians breathe through their skin? (Imagine if you could do that!) This makes amphibians more sensitive to changes in their environment than many other animals, so scientists can use changes in amphibian populations to assess environmental impacts. This is just one of many reasons we want to keep stormwater clean. Stormwater washes anything on the ground into our waterways, where it can affect amphibians and other critters.
If you want to learn to identify amphibians (and other animals, plus plants and fungi), try using the free iNaturalist mobile app! Just take a photo, and iNaturalist will identify the organism in front of you, and geo-tag the location for other app users to identify. You can even upload sound recordings, and fellow naturalists can identify the species for you! For a step-by-step guide to iNaturalist, click here or see below.
Happy exploring, and remember to keep stormwater clean for the critters downstream!