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Pyllomedusa Bicolor Photo Shoot

15th November 2015

Set deep in the Peruvian Amazon,located in the region of Madre de Dios in a small logging concession, I (Mark Fernley) set out with a team of Fauna Forever biologists, my aim, to photograph the vast array of amphibians in all their shapes sizes and colours. A week into our trip, one of my encounters was particularly memorable. I came across a sound, a very distinctive one, one that would excite any biologist. The sound came from the canopy, a very bold sound of “Bra!, Brararararararara”  This meant one thing a Giant Monkey Frog (Phyllomedusa Bicolor). I walked for several hours off trail with my slowly fading torch that lit very little of the canopy from below, the sound of the “Bra!, brararararararara”  getting closer. Then I looked up and there the green diamond sat about six meters above the ground. I got a small fallen tree of a diameter of three inches and trimmed the branches off. I then used it to loop around the legs of the frog and as gentle as a feather, the stunning frog latched onto my tree/pole and down he came.

I put the green gem onto a low vine and set my Canon 70D up with my fish eye lens attached. The aperture was set f/13, shutter speed as 1/60th of a second and iso at 160, I was ready to shoot.  At a focal length of 15mm I tapped the frog on his bottom and off he walked down the vine. As he approached the camera he came into frame and I pressed the remote trigger to capture the frog in motion. When the frog passed, I returned him to the starting point and it would then continue to walk past the camera again and again while I captured multiple different shots of this monstrous creature.

After the shoot, I returned him to the canopy and I returned to the camp with a feeling of satisfaction.

Story written by Mark Fernley