New Updates 7-1-2020

We are always aiming to make PARS a better user experience, and are often making small changes behind the scenes to improve the website. Some of our recent changes may be more noticeable, and require a brief news post to highlight these changes.

Threatened and Endangered Species (T&E)

To better protect sensitive species we have implemented some changes to T&E species. T&E species are hidden on the front page recent records section, recent observed page, and recent submitted page. When Searching T&E species the date of observation is hidden.  When viewing a T&E species, Date and Time of Observation and Date and Time Created are hidden. 

Block and Quad Maps

A block or quad that previously had both a species and a subspecies of the same species will now only show and count the subspecies. A block or quad that does not have a subspecies and only a species-level identification will still be counted, until a subspecies for that block or quad is verified. Eastern Ribbonsnakes (comprised of Common and Northern subspecies) will now only count as Ribbonsnakes and no subspecies of Ribbonsnakes will show, but you can still enter the subspecies as an observation. 

Short form and Voucher Upload 

A new short form option for adding a record can be found on the add a record page. This option will eliminate many fields for a more simplistic form. You can still add more detailed data in the regular reporting form.

Also, a new modern file upload field has been implemented to make multiple file selections and drag and drop files uploads available. 

Front Page Recent Records

The front page recent records section will now only include records that have an attached voucher. Records without a voucher are still recorded and show up throughout the database but will not be visible on the front page. 

2020 PARS MEETING CANCELED

Due to the ongoing threat of the 2019 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 Pandemic (SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19), the 2020 PARS Annual Meeting scheduled for April 25th in Bellefonte has been canceled. As with many others around the world we are watching the situation closely with both concern and hope that these uncertain times pass quickly. We plan to reschedule the meeting for the fall of 2020 but this will, of course, depend on what transpires in the coming months. On behalf of our board, staff, and partners, we want to take the opportunity to tell all of you how greatly we appreciate your efforts and ongoing support. We look forward to seeing old friends and new at the annual meetings and it was with heavy hearts that we made this decision. But it was an obvious choice and likely not surprising to most. The last thing we want is to jeopardize the health of PARSers. We hope April 25th can be a day of individual field observations and block-busting around the state in lieu of meeting attendance. If you venture into the field, make sure it is consistent with suggested recommendations regarding shelter-in-place orders and social distancing. Do not risk your health and safety or that of loved ones. Please follow the guidance of the Pennsylvania Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at the following links:

https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/disease/coronavirus/Pages/Coronavirus.aspx?fbclid=IwAR0RtVFeJKQcaUTNT9i8i4Fu4fhDm-FxLmU7QV1btcvAHp_hz3S-u5Xe92M

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/travel-in-the-us.html?fbclid=IwAR12rnkTW2FkTtk1LEdPoxYbdtAhpNSz2T1a5HCBfQk8bePa0Tbc4pvVipQ

Don’t forget to submit your amphibian and reptile observations to paherpsurvey.org. And remember, even common species like the Eastern Red-backed Salamander and Eastern Gartersnake are important for the PARS project. We look forward to seeing your collective observations from around Pennsylvania. If you can’t venture far afield, perhaps enjoy the daily record submissions vicariously.

As with all trials in life, find comfort in the Persian aphorism, this too shall pass. We look forward to the day when PARSers around Pennsylvania can once again join together en masse to share the passion and joy of field herpetology. Until that day, stay healthy and be safe. And happy herping!

Mudpuppy Distribution in Pennsylvania

The Mid-Atlantic Center for Herpetology and Conservation in partnership with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resource’s Wild Resource Conservation Program and the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, is conducting a Mudpuppy distribution study in Pennsylvania. The Common Mudpuppy is regularly found by anglers, often caught accidentally on fishing hooks or in minnow traps. Anglers and citizen-scientist have a great opportunity to help herpetologists figure out the distribution and status of these species by simply taking a picture of any specimens encountered and emailing a picture, date, time, and location of the observation to . To find out more visit: http://machac.org. You can also download our printable flyer at https://paherpsurvey.org/doc/PARS-Hellbender-and-Mudpuppy-Alert-Flyer.pdf

Mobile Mapper users update to services url

If you are using Mobile Mapper, please go to your “Services” settings tab, and update the “Configuration URL” to https://paherpsurvey.org/mobile from the original http://paherpsurvey.org/mobile

This will eleminate the Error 3 that some people have been experiencing while trying to Sync Records.

New & Improved Quad and Block Search

Greetings PARSers! We have rolled out a new and improved version of the Quad and Block Map Search that includes: Color-coded blocks and quads based on species count as well as multiple county search. The URL in the Search Dropdown has been updated to the new map, the old version will be deprecated. Be sure to update your bookmarks. We hope you have a great field season. Happy Herping!

3rd Annual Photography Contest

Since the launch of PARS we have received thousands upon thousands of voucher photos, many of which are outstanding examples of wildlife photography. Among these, certain photos always stand out; either for outstanding clarity, composition, behavior of the subject, or other possible reasons. We would like to start showcasing the quality of our best photographers with an annual photography contest. Entrants in of the categories listed below will compete for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards, and winning photographs will appear in the last newsletter issue of each year until 2022. First place winners may see their winning photographs in, or on the cover of a future PARS newsletter, or possibly in the final publication for the PARS project. One photograph will be chosen as the ‘Best of Show’ grand prize winner each year. Photographs will be judged on composition, creativity and clarity of the shot.

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2nd Annual Photography Contest

Since the launch of PARS we have received thousands upon thousands of voucher photos, many of which are outstanding examples of wildlife photography. Among these, certain photos always stand out; either for outstanding clarity, composition, behavior of the subject, or other possible reasons. We would like to start showcasing the quality of our best photographers with an annual photography contest. Entrants in of the categories listed below will compete for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards, and winning photographs will appear in the last newsletter issue of each year until 2022. First place winners may see their winning photographs in, or on the cover of a future PARS newsletter, or possibly in the final publication for the PARS project. One photograph will be chosen as the ‘Best of Show’ grand prize winner each year. Photographs will be judged on composition, creativity and clarity of the shot.

Read More

PARS 3rd ANNUAL MEETING

The third Annual PARS Membership Meeting is scheduled for March 25,2017 and will be held in Annville, PA. Featured speakers will include David McNaughton – Fort Indiantown Gap Office of Wildlife & Conservation,
Nathan Nazdrowicz – University of Delaware, and Kurt Regester – Clarion University.

Pre-registration is required. Members login to RSVP.