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Frog Blog

Dr. Carlos C. Martínez Rivera

Dr. Carlos C. Martínez Rivera takes a break from measuring frogs at Cachote, one of our coastal cloud forest sites on eastern Sierra de Bahoruco in the Dominican Republic.
As we continue our mission to save critically endangered amphibians and their habitat, Dr. Carlos Martínez Rivera, Philadelphia Zoo's Amphibian Conservation Biologist, is based in Haiti and the Dominican Republic to conduct field research, build capacity and manage existing populations.
 
Back in 2010, the zoo began a long-term conservation program for some of the world's most endangered amphibians, found only in Haiti. A team of amphibian biologists, professional nature photographers and other enthusiasts from various backgrounds rescued these endangered amphibians and documented the collapse of biodiversity in Haiti. Since then, Philadelphia Zoo’s amphibian conservation has focused on how to save the many critically endangered frogs of Haiti and the neighboring Dominican Republic. 
 
Dr. Martínez Rivera is back in the field, this time focused on  educating our next generation of conservationists and ecologists. First stop is Jacksonville, FL for the Zoos and Aquariums Committed to Conservation Conference (ZACC), where conservationists from zoos and aquariums meet with conservationists working in the field. At this conference ideas are exchanged, conservation projects are created and all work together to save endangered species.

Immediately after ZACC, Dr. Martínez Rivera is traveling to Costa Rica to teach as a guest professor at the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS). There he will meet with students from 12 different countries, all with different academic and professional background to talk about effective grant writing and grant report writing. The last stop of the trip is a visit to Ecuador with four seniors from the Zoo’s youth program, ZooCREW. Together with our VP of Conservation and Education and the Zoo's Youth Programs Coordinator we will lead a week-long cultural immersion and field conservation experience.

02/16/2018 : The Importance of Conservation

Dr. Carlos Martinez Rivera addresses graduate students in Costa Rica visiting from nine different Latin American countries about the importance of conservation initiatives and brainstormed tactics they might utilize to save various species and ecosystems. 

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02/13/2018 : Returning to Costa Rica

Fifteen years after taking a Tropical Ecology and Conservation course in Costa Rica as a graduate student, Dr. Carlos Martinez Rivera returns - this time as a visiting professor. 

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01/26/2018 : Greetings from Zoos and Aquariums Committed to Conservation Conference

Philadelphia Zoo staff is in Jacksonville, FL at the Zoos and Aquariums Committed to Conservation meeting. The conference blends together the world of zoos and aquariums conservationists and educators with people working in the field with the idea of creating collaborations and solutions to Conservation problems.

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08/07/2017 : Necessary (Amphibian) Arrangements

Dr. Carlos Martinez Rivera is currently working with the Amphibian Conservation Center - Zoo Amaru in Ecuador to reintroduce critically endangered frogs back into the wild but first they must ensure these species can thrive on thier own in these protected habitats. 

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07/25/2017 : Returning Captive-Bred Frogs to the Wild

Philadlphia Zoo's Amphibian Conservation Biologist, Dr. Carlos Martinez Rivera, is back in Ecuador gearing up for the exciting release of captive-bred frogs to their natural habitat.
 

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01/25/2017 : Surveying Haiti's Mountain Ranges

Dr. Carlos Martinez Rivera and his team are currently in Haiti, trying to assess the damages caused by Hurricane Matthew to some of the areas in the southern mountain range of Massif de la Hotte and Massif de la Selle.

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01/16/2017 : Assessment of Damage Caused by Hurricane Matthew

Following the destruction caused by Hurrican Matthew this past October, Dr. Carlos Martínez Rivera, Philadelphia Zoo's Amphibian Conservation Biologist, travels back to Haiti to assess Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs), survey wildlife populations, and further understand the damage caused by the storm. 

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03/03/2016 : Update from Cordillera del Condor, Ecuador

Last year, the Amphibian Conservation Center – Zoo Amaru (ACC-Zoo Amaru) received a grant from the Amphibian Ark to help us save populations of amphibian species from Cordillera del Condor in the southern corner of the Ecuadorian Amazon.

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02/22/2016 : Back to the Basics

The Philadelphia Zoo’s Amphibian Conservation Program began in 2009. Through our collaboration with the local Zoo Amaru in Ecuador, we established the Amphibian Conservation Center-Mazán Forest the city of Cuenca, Ecuador. Fast-forward seven years and here we are in Ecuador to start reaping the fruits of our project.

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02/03/2016 : Saving frogs of Southern Hispaniola

Although it seems like just yesterday, five years have passed since the Philadelphia Zoo embarked on its first mission to save Haitian frogs. It is exciting times and we have reached another new milestone on our conservation program.

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07/29/2015 : Phibi and her family of wampukrum harlequin toads get help

Some of our regular zoo visitors might remember the time the Zoo was overrun by a mob of concerned puppet animals carrying a conservation message. 

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06/19/2015 : Communicating Science

Communicating science is perhaps the most important thing we will do in our career as scientists and conservationists. But how do you do it?

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05/20/2015 : The black Cajas harlequin toad

The black Cajas harlequin toad, Atelopus nanay, is one of those species that was thought to be extinct. 

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04/25/2015 : Citizen Science

Citizen science, that blissful art by which we all realize that science is truly accessible, is a field that is growing and helps people from all walks of life make new discoveries every day.

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04/06/2015 : Colombia: A Biodiversity Hot Spot

Colombia ranks behind only Brazil in amphibian, bird and mammal diversity in the Americas; unfortunately, it is also one of the South American countries with the highest rate of environmental issues, with big problems due to rampant deforestation, pollution, crop fumigation and mining contamination.

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02/10/2015 : Atelopus wuampukrum

What is a wampukrum harlequin toad?

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01/16/2015 : Amphibian Conservation in the Tropical Andes of Ecuador

A new year brings new opportunities in the form of renewed ties with our old partners at the Amphibian Conservation Center - Zoo Amaru in Ecuador. 

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01/06/2015 : Empowering Locals

Our amphibian conservation project in Haiti and the Dominican Republic is not just field work and finding frogs.

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11/28/2014 : New Hope for Long Lost Frogs

One of the most gratifying moments in our daily life is finding a lost object, like your car keys or your phone. So imagine how it feels when you find a frog that was supposed to be extinct!

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09/12/2014 : Capacity-Building and Training

Amphibian conservation, like all conservation actions requires a positive change in human behavior to succeed. This behavioral change begins by educating those that are most likely to affect the species and ultimately the habitat that we strive to conserve.

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08/15/2014 : Project Update

Two years into trying to save Hispaniola's endangered amphibians, Santo Domingo has become like a second home to me.

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