Have you been on a nature trek recently… Have you wondered about the diverse variety of birds and insects seen in the forest… Have you realized that there are a lot many animals around us than we ever know about… Have you seen the different types of frogs living in our surroundings…
How about a mobile app to identify frogs!?!
Dr. K.V. Gururaja from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore has been studying frogs for the last 15 years. In 2012, Dr. Gururaja wrote a book called the “Pictorial Guide to Frogs and Toads of Western Ghats”. This book covers 73 of the 156 species of frogs and toads found in the Western Ghats. Soon after the book was published, two software developers approached him, wanting to develop an android app based on the book. After many lengthy conversations and emails sent back and forth, FrogFind was born.
FrogFind is India’s first ever mobile application to identify different species of frogs and is a delight to use. It contains information about the habitat, distribution, key identifying features, time of activity and ecological status of frogs and toads in a visual and intuitive manner. The next version will allow users to find frogs in a 10 kilometer radius around them and will be released on the iOS platform (Apple). The team will also be working with India Biodiversity Portal to enable the app to identify frogs based on their call, which is unique to each species.
Version 2 of the app will be used as a citizen science project. In such projects, wildlife enthusiasts and lay persons can identify frogs and capture the location of where they were found. This helps scientists to monitor and build distribution maps of different species, over large areas.
Invite Frogs to your Garden to Bid Goodbye to Pests
Frogs are an important link in the food chain as they control the population of pests like mosquitoes and moths. Dr. Gururaja tells me that there are hardly any frogs found in city due to unfavorable conditions. Keeping a small pond in your garden can help to attract them. Apart from being relieved of the mosquito population, you will also get a chance to study their behavior.
You can download FrogFind here