The bright colours of a Painted Turtle's plastron are aposematic. They are warning colours to fish that might try and eat young turtles. Small turtles react to being in a fish's mouth by violently scratching and scraping with their claws, causing damage to the fish's mouth. Fish learn to avoid eating these feisty mouthfuls. The bright colours and patterns on the turtle's underside signals to fish: "try and eat me at your own risk!"
Additional Herp Resources
The species accounts and other information provided in the MHA have been kept to a minimum. The focus of the MHA, after all, is to gather new information about the distribution and status of these species. However, recognizing that people may want more information about these cool critters, here are a variety of resources on Manitoba's herps, and herps in general. The information presented in the MHA was drawn from these and other resources.
If you know of any other resource materials that should be included here, please drop us a line: Email NatureNorth.
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Hardcopy Resources - Books
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Boyens, Ingeborg (Editor). 2007. The Encyclopedia of Manitoba.
Conant, R. and J. T. Collins. 1998. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians, Eastern and Central North America. Peterson Field Guide Series.
Elliot, L., C. Gerhardt and C. Davidson. 2009. The Frogs and Toads of North America.
Ernst, C. H. and E. M. Hernst. 2003. Snakes of the United States and Canada.
Heyer, W. R. et al. 1994. Measuring and Monitoring Biological Diversity: Standard Methods for Amphibians. Smithsonian Institution Press.
Petranka, J. W. 1998. Salamanders of the United States and Canada.
Preston, W. B. 1982. Amphibians and Reptiles of Manitoba.
Stebbins, C.S. 2003. A field guide to western reptiles and amphibians. Peterson Field Guides Series.
Wells, K. D. 2007. The Ecology and Behaviour of Amphibians.
Wyneken, J., M. H. Godfrey and V. Bels. 2008. Biology of Turtles.
Online Resources - Herp Links in NatureNorth.com
Amphibians of Manitoba
NatureNorth's presentation of the amphibians of Manitoba, prepared for a younger audience.
Assiniboine Park Zoo's Amphibian Panels
Digital versions of the interpretive panels found in Assiniboine Park Zoo and around the province.
An account of this cryptic critter in manitoba.
A record of the growth and development of wood frog tadpoles.
Frozen frogs in the forest; a column originally published in the Winnipeg Free Press.
Frog and Toad Calls
A one-page presentation of the calls of all Manitoba's frogs and toads.
An essay on freeze tolerance in amphibians and other animals.
Have you seen this snake?
The work of herpetologist, Neil Gushulak, in southwestern Manitoba.
Narcisse Snake Den Log
Our update page for action at the world-famous Narcisse Snake Dens. Take a virtual tour of the den site!
Save Our Skinks!
Our major feature on the Northern Prairie Skink!
Some background information on Red-sided Garter Snakes in Manitoba.
The Northern Prairie Skink
A personal account from biologist, Errol Bredin, of one of his favourite creatures.
Treefrogs change colour
Another Winnipeg Free Press Article, on the chamaeleon-like gray treefrogs.
The biology of one of Manitoba's and North America's most widespread amphibian.
Online Resources - External Websites
An online system that provides access to information on amphibian declines, conservation, natural history, and taxonomy.
Amphibian Specialist Group
The Amphibian Specialist Group is a global network of dedicated experts who donate their time and expertise to create a community from where practical amphibian conservation can be advanced based on a solid foundation of science.
Canadian Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Network
The Canadian Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Network (CARCNET)is devoted to conserving Canada's native species of amphibians and reptiles, and their ecological and evolutionary functions in perpetuity.
Center for North American Herpetology
The academic portal to North American herpetology.
FieldHerpForum, the Worldwide Community of Herpers, offers interesting links and observations.
Herpetological Conservation and Biology
An open-access international journal that publishes original peer-reviewed research, reviews, and perspectives on the ecology, natural history, management, and conservation biology of amphibians and reptiles.
HerpNation Media is a interesting resource for herp enthusiasts.
Manitoba Herpetocultural Society
Herp enthusiasts in Manitoba!
Scientific and Common Names of the Reptiles and Amphibians of North America
If you're interested in the origins of scientific names, check out this site.
Online Resources - Neighbouring Provinces and States
Have a look at the distributions of a number of reptiles and amphibians in our neighbouring states and provinces. There are some that come tantalizingly close to Manitoba's borders. Who knows what might turn up here once we really start looking?
Dakota Amphibian and Reptile Network
The best DARN amphibian and reptile network in the Dakotas.
Minnesota's Amphibians and Reptiles
Minnesota's Snakes, Lizards, Turtles, Frogs, Toads and Salamanders. ** A great source for images, videos and sounds! **
Minnesota DNR Reptiles and Amphibians
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Reptiles and Amphibians Information pages.
Minnesota's Amphibian and Reptile Distribution Maps
Distribution maps of Minnesota's amphibians and reptiles are being prepared for the revision of Amphibians and Reptiles Native to Minnesota.
North Dakota Herp Atlas
The North Dakota Herp Atlas was started in 2008.
North Dakota's Reptiles and Amphibians
USGS Northern Prairie Wildlife Center, Reptiles and Amphibians of North Dakota.
North Dakota Reptiles and Amphibians
University of North Dakota, Reptiles and Amphibians.
Nunavut - Amphibians CARCNET
Canadian Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Network, Nunavut Amphibians page.
Ontario Herpetofaunal Atlas
The Ontario Herpetofaunal Atlas (or Summary) (OHS) project began in 1984 as an attempt to consolidate existing information and gather new data on Ontario's amphibians and reptiles.
Ontario's Reptile and Amphibian Atlas
Ontario Nature has begun work on a new Ontario Reptile and Amphibian Atlas project in partnership with the Eastern Ontario Model Forest (EOMF), the Ministry of Natural Resources’ Natural Heritage Information Centre (NHIC), and other government agencies and nongovernmental organizations.
The Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan - Amphibians.
The Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan - Reptiles.
Saskatchewan Amphibians - CARCNET
Canadian Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Network, Saskatchewan Amphibians page.
If you can suggest any other resource materials, please drop us a line: Email NatureNorth.