Wicomico County is a great place to find Herps! -so what are they you ask? "Herps" is a short term for Herpetology which is the study of amphibians and reptiles. Herps use environmental temperatures to regulate their body temperatures in a process called ectothermy. Herps are a great indicator for ecosystem health- by finding a great variety, you can determine that the surrounding ecosystem is very healthy! Maryland Amphibians:
Salamanders & Newts
Turtles & Tortoises
You can learn more about the different kinds of Herps we have in Wicomico County as well as how to find them and where at the bottom of the page.
Do you enjoy finding Herps and want to help out the State of MD?
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources and the Maryland Natural History Society have a joint project called the The Maryland Amphibian and Reptile Atlas (MARA)- it is going on until December 2014. Volunteers are needed to help document the distribution of Maryland's herps. The goal of MARA is to document the current distributions in hopes of establishing a baseline for future efforts to determine if there are changes in the distribution of these herps across MD.
For more information, click the button below to get to MARA's home page.
Photo courtesy of the Lower Shore Herp Atlas Project
Did you know Wicomico County is involved with MARA too? The Lower Shore Herp Atlas is a project of MARA where community members get togethers to collaborare their findings. In the link below you can find ways to help out the State of Maryland and have fun with nature at the same time! In order to get started, follow the directions on the Lower Shore Herp Atlas' page below:
IMPORTANT INFORMATION: DANGER! It is better to go with an adult and/or someone who is experienced in Herping. We have Copperheads here in Wicomico County! A Copperhead is a venomous pit-viper that is easily mistakable or confused with other species. To ensure everyone's safety as they go looking for all the cool harmless species we have here, it is important to take note of the species to stay away from as well. After you handle any kind animal you should wash your hands or disinfect them using hand sanitizer.
Where can I find Herps in Wicomico?
There are many great places to find Herps here! Depending on what kind of species you are looking for, check here:
Salamanders & Newts: They like moist, dark places. Check under decaying logs, leaves and rocks.
Frogs & Toads: Frogs and Toads like moist places, They can be found on roads after a nice rainfall in the summer. Frogs like moist places near streams and creeks and can also be found on trees or even your screen door! Toads can camouflage very well with the fallen leaves-so watch your step!
Lizards & Snakes:can be found anywhere- bushes, on the ground, fences, under logs or big pieces of debris
Turtles:aquatic turtles like still water- like ponds. Often you can see them pop their head up to the surface to get a breath of air. Other turtles can be found on the ground in forests, or gardens.
For a full list of herps in Wicomico County, Print out the chart on the "Full County Lists" button below.