Mountains, monsoons and mosquitoes: highlights from amphibian biologist Dr Jodi Rowley's diary of her recent field trip to Central Vietnam.

We spent most of the day recording data for the amphibians and reptiles that we collected, and preserving scientific specimens. After lunch, at about 2pm, a thunderstorm rolled over and it rained heavily most of the afternoon. However, thankfully by the time we headed out at about 6.30pm, it was only sprinkling.

We surveyed a swampy area downstream, finding some lovely tree frogs calling from about 10 m up trees, and a number more small brown frogs in the genus Leptolalax calling from an area of boulders, rocks, rotting wood, leaf-litter and vegetation- a perfect hiding spot for something so small and camouflaged! Lying in the mud, I recorded the call of a number of them, many of which I couldn’t find, even though they must have been right there! I think I kept the team there longer than they’d like, lying in the mud with my sound recorder.

One of the guides is a marksman with a home-made slingshot, and bagged a long-tailed rat for his after-survey snack!

long-tailed rat