Can Australian amphibians leapfrog Taylor Swift for the ARIA Christmas #1? Australian Frog Calls: Songs of Disappearance is hoping we all hop on board.
After endangered Australian bird calls were the surprise summer hit of last year, soaring above the likes of Ed Sheeran and Adele in the ARIA Chart and becoming a cultural phenomenon around the world, Songs of Disappearance this year turns its attention to frogs.
The Bowerbird Collective and the Australian Museum have teamed up to create a one-of-a-kind collection of native frog calls with Songs of Disappearance, and want help leapfrogging Taylor Swift into the #1 position on the Christmas ARIA Chart.
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The project brings attention to FrogID Week, an annual event where the public are encouraged to download the free FrogID app and record the frogs they hear calling around them. The project also highlights that one in six Australian native frog species are currently threatened, with four already sadly extinct.
Dr Jodi Rowley, Lead Scientist for FrogID and Curator of Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Biology at the Australian Museum and UNSW Sydney, stresses the importance of citizen science in helping our frogs.
“Frogs are one of the most threatened groups of animals on the planet – in Australia, at least four species have already been lost to extinction and many more are under threat. FrogID Week gives a snapshot of frogs calling across Australia, helping us understand where they are and how they are doing,” she says.
“Every species of frog makes a unique call. By recording frog calls with the free FrogID app, anyone with a smartphone can help us understand how frog populations are changing over time, and how we can better protect them and our environment.”
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Far from a hip-hop record (the puns keep coming) Songs of Disappearance contains over 50 ribbeting frog calls and features recordings made by FrogID app users from across the country. The croaks even include some extinct, like that of the Gastric Brooding Frog (Rheobatrachus silus), once found in tropical Queensland.
The album is a reminder of the frogs we have already lost and those we stand to lose. Once extinct, even the kiss from a princess won’t bring them back. Songs of Disappearance is a tribute to Australia’s unique frog species and a celebration of the thousands of FrogID contributions that help inform their conservation.
Songs of Disappearance: Australian Frog Calls is available as a digital download or physical CD, which features a 16-page booklet full of wonderful photography and liner notes. Proceeds from the album’s sales will go towards the Australian Museum’s national FrogID project, helping it continue to make giant leaps in frog research and conservation through public recordings.
Kermit to helping the native wildlife and head here to pre-order your copy of Songs of Disappearance now.