A creek running through Larry and Amanda Andersons property in Oregon was the focal point of a letter sent out to the homeowners from the Oregon Department of Fish and Game. Conservation strategy implementation biologist Steve Neimela sent the letter to the couple asking for permission to survey the creek on their property in an on-going research project surrounding the declining population of foothill yellow-legged frogs.
The letter itself is what many would expect, friendly, to the point and concise in laying out planned objectives of the survey and project.
What Neimela received in response to his letter was likely far from both what he expected and what he usually receives with similar requests. Although the Anderson’s did agree to grant access to the biologists, their response came with a few terms of their own.
Here’s the transcribed response:
Dear Mr. Niemela:
Thank you for your inquiry regarding accessing our property to survey for the yellow-legged frog. We may be able to help you out with this matter.
We have divided our 2.26 acres into 75 equal survey units with a draw tag for each unit. Application fees are only $8.00 per unit after you purchase the “Frog Survey License” ($120.00 resident / $180.00 Non-Resident). You will also need to obtain a “Frog Habitat” parking permit ($10.00 per vehicle). You will also need an “Invasive Species” stamp ($15.00 for the first vehicle and $5.00 for each add’l vehicle) You will also want to register at the Check Station to have your vehicle inspected for non-native plant life prior to entering our property. There is also a Day Use fee, $5.00 per vehicle.
If you are successful in the Draw you will be notified two weeks in advance so you can make necessary plans and purchase your “Creek Habitat” stamp. ($18.00 Resident / $140.00 Non-Resident). Survey units open between 8am and 3pm but you cannot commence survey until 9am and must cease all survey activity by 1pm.
Survey Gear can only include a net with a 2″ diameter made of 100% organic cotton netting with no longer than an 18″ handle, non-weighted and no deeper than 6′ from net frame to bottom of net. Handles can only be made of BPA-free plastics or wooden handles. After 1pm you can use a net with a 3″ diameter if you purchase the “Frog Net Endorsement” ($75.00 Resident / $250 Non-Resident). Any frogs captured that are released will need to be released with an approved release device back into the environment unharmed.
As of June 1, we are offering draw tags for our “Premium Survey” units and application is again only $8.00 per application. However, all fees can be waives if you can verify “Native Indian Tribal rights and status.
You will also need to provide evidence of successful completion of “Frog Surveys and You” comprehensive course on frog identification, safe handling practices, and self-defense strategies for frog attacks. This course is offered online through an accredited program for a nominal fee of $750.00.
Please let us know if we can be of assistance to you. Otherwise, we decline access to our property but appreciate your inquiry.
Larry & Amanda Anderson
According to the Anderson’s, their response was all in good fun and they did not set out to offend Mr. Neimela or anyone else at the department. Larry Anderson told TheBlaze that he had yet to hear back from the biologist.
“I don’t know, I better give him a call on Monday,” he told TheBlaze.