Kansas Herpetological Society Logo

The official state turtle (Ornate Box Turtle) and amphibian (Barred Tiger Salamander) of Kansas


Photographs © courtesy of Suzanne L. Collins

The Official Web Site of the Kansas Herpetological Society

The Kansas Herpetological Society

The KHS is a non-profit 501c3 organization founded in Lawrence, Kansas, in 1974 by Joseph T. Collins and colleagues, designed to encourage scholarship, research, and dissemination of scientific information through the facilities of the Society; to encourage conservation of wildlife in general and of the herpetofauna of Kansas in particular; and to achieve closer cooperation and understanding between herpetologists, so that they may work together in common cause. The KHS is not a herpetocultural organization, but encourages individuals to keep and maintain native Kansas herpetofauna for educational and research purposes.



KHS Membership

All interested persons are invited to become members in the Society. Membership dues per calendar year are $15.00 (U.S., Regular), $20.00 (outside North America, Regular), and $20.00 (Contributing) payable to the KHS. Send all dues to: Dr. Eva A. Horne, KHS Secretary, Division of Biology, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas 66506, USA.

All members are entitled to participate in Society functions and have voting privileges. They receive copies of Society publications, which include Collinsorum, as well as other publications of interest or those co-sponsored by the Society. To be eligible for KHS grants and scholarships, individuals must be KHS members.



KHS Meetings

The KHS holds an annual meeting in the fall of each year. The meeting is, minimally, a two day event with lectures and presentations by herpetologists. All interested individuals are invited to make presentations. The annual meeting is also the time of the Saturday night social and fund-raising auction. All are invited to bid on herpetologically oriented items (except for live animals or parts thereof) donated by a variety of sources including members.

KHS Annual Meeting



KHS Field Trips

The KHS hosts two or more field trips each year, one in the spring and one in the fall. Field trips serve to broaden understanding of the distribution and abundance of various species in Kansas. In addition, field trips are an enjoyable educational experience for everyone. All interested persons are invited to attend.

While most specimens observed and counted during the KHS field trip will be released, selected specimens also will be collected by individuals with current Kansas Scientific Collecting Permits and kept for deposition in research collections at accredited institutions, where they (and their tissues) will be available for research use by any qualified investigators. Field trip participants wishing to assist in this research effort are encouraged to donate their specimens to those individuals qualified to receive them.

KHS Spring Field Trip

KHS Summer Field Trip

KHS Fall Field Trip



KHS Herpetofaunal Counts

The KHS encourages individuals to conduct herpetofaunal counts each spring (during April and May only), similar to the Audubon Society's winter bird counts. All interested persons are invited to participate. Counts made should be submitted directly to the Editor or Associate Editor of Collinsorum (see below), and should include the location of the count, date(s), names of participants, list of species observed (standard common names only) and the number of each, and the complete name and address of the individual submitting the count. All counts must be submitted by 15 July, and will be published each year in the September issue of Collinsorum.

Download the KHS Herpetofaunal Survey Form Here


KHS Distinguished Life Members

Robert F. Clarke
1919-2008
Department of Biology, Emporia State University, Kansas

Joseph T. Collins
1939-2012
Museum of Natural History, University of Kansas, Lawrence

Henry S. Fitch
1909-2009
Fitch Natural History Reservation, The University of Kansas, Lawrence

Eugene D. Fleharty
Sternberg Museum of Natural History, Fort Hays State University, Hays

Howard K. Gloyd
1902-1978
Department of Zoology, The University of Arizona, Tucson

Larry L. Miller
Southwestern College, Winfield, Kansas

George R. Pisani
Kansas Biological Survey, The University of Kansas, Lawrence

Dwight R. Platt
Department of Biology, Bethel College, North Newton, Kansas

Hobart M. Smith
1912-2013
Department of EPO Biology, The University of Colorado, Boulder

Edward H. Taylor
1889-1978
Museum of Natural History, The University of Kansas, Lawrence



KHS Bronze Salamander Award

Established in 1987, this Award is presented to those individuals whose efforts and dedication to the Kansas Herpetological Society go far beyond the normal bounds. The recipients of this Award have given exemplary service to the KHS, and are presented with an elegant bronze sculpture of a Barred Tiger Salamander (our official state amphibian). The statue, created by artist Errol D. Hooper, Jr., is currently poured and finished by Heartland Art Bronze of Lawrence, and is mounted on an attractive wooden base, with the recipient's name on a plate above the words For Distinguished Service. Candidates for the Award are chosen by the KHS Executive Council. Previous recipients are as follows:

Former Recipients:
1987 John E. Simmons Lawrence
1988 Larry L. Miller Caldwell
1989 Joseph T. Collins Lawrence
1990 Janice J. Perry Lawrence
1993 Martin B. Capron Oxford
1998 Hank Guarisco Lawrence
1998 Kelly J. Irwin Topeka
2000 Eric M. Rundquist Lawrence
2002 Karen Toepfer Olathe
2010 Travis W. Taggart Hays
2011 Mary Kate Baldwin Topeka
2011 Eric Kessler Kansas City, Missouri



The Suzanne L. & Joseph T. Collins Award for Excellence in Kansas Herpetology

The Collins Award was established in 1997 by The Center for North American Herpetology in recognition of the scientific and artistic achievements of Suzanne L. Collins and Joseph T. Collins, whose life-long study and conservation of the native herpetofauna of Kansas is amply demonstrated in their extensive and excellent writings and photography, both academic and popular, about these animals. The Collins Award, established by an initial generous contribution to CNAH from Westar Energy, is a trust in perpetuity controlled exclusively by CNAH, and will increase in amount through reinvestment. The award is minimally $1000.00, making it the largest annual state award for any biological, wildlife, or conservation organization in Kansas. It is also the largest national award given annually for research on or photography of amphibians, turtles, and reptiles. The recipient of The Collins Award, at the request of CNAH, is chosen by the KHS Awards Committee, which is appointed by and serves at the pleasure of the KHS Executive Council; it is presented on the occasion of the annual meeting before the assembled membership. The recipient must be present to receive The Collins Award or another recipient will be selected.

Specifications of The Collins Award:

In even-numbered years, The Collins Award shall be bestowed upon that member of the KHS who, in the preceding two calendar years, accomplished the following: Had published a paper of academic excellence on the systematics, ecology, or conservation of a native species of Kansas amphibian, turtle, and/or reptile in the Journal of Kansas Herpetology, Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science, Herpetological Review, or the Journal of Herpetology, and/or presented a lecture of excellence on the systematics, ecology, or conservation of a native species of Kansas amphibian(s) and/or reptile(s). To qualify for The Collins Award, a portion of the field work or observations must have occurred in Kansas, or the systematic data must have been based in part on Kansas specimens. Individuals eligible for The Collins Award must be KHS members when they do the research, when the paper is published, or when the talk is given. Further, the KHS requires individuals who present papers to signify they are eligible for The Collins Award when they submit the title of the talk to the KHS Meeting Chairperson or just prior to giving the talk at the annual meeting; those individuals that publish a paper that meets the criteria must submit three copies of the published version to the Chair of the KHS Awards Committee in order to be considered for The Collins Award.

In odd-numbered years, The Collins Award shall be bestowed upon an individual who accomplished the following: Was chosen the best in a juried competition featuring the art of photography in portraying amphibians, turtles, and/or reptiles, said competition to take place under the auspices and on the occasion of the primary meeting of an appropriate organization or society in Kansas. To qualify for the The Collins Award, the art work must portray or be based on those species native to Kansas. The KHS is looking for striking images of Kansas herpetofauna that depict interesting behavior or include portraits of species in a natural habitat or setting. Images will be judged on originality, technical excellence, composition, color, action, drama, and overall impact. Entry to the competition constitutes agreement by the photographer to allow the winning photograph to be published by CNAH/KHS on its web site or in publicity releases. Entrants retain all other rights to the future use of their winning photograph. A total of up to five photographs may be submitted as prints. Prints must be mounted for display purposes. The back of each photograph must bear the photographer's name, address, telephone number, and entry number (1-5). The identity of the photographer will not be revealed to the members of the KHS Awards Committee. All entries must be delivered and set up by the photographer in the judging room by 10:00 am on Saturday of the KHS annual meeting. Photographers are responsible for their entries at all times. The KHS assumes no responsibility or liability for any photographic entries.

The Collins Award Judging Criteria

Former Recipients:
1998 Travis W. Taggart The University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, Kansas
1999 Gregory A. Sievert Emporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2000 Emily C. Moriarty The University of Texas, Austin, Texas
2001 Daniel D. Fogell The University of Nebraska, Omaha, Nebraska
2002 John F. Cavitt Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas
2003 Larry L. Miller Northern Hills Junior High School, Topeka, Kansas
2004 Dwight R. Platt Bethel College, North Newton, Kansas
2005 Larry L. Miller Northern Hills Junior High School, Topeka, Kansas
2006 Henry S. Fitch The University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas
2007 J. Daren Riedle West Texas A&M University, Canyon, Texas
2008 Dustin J. Wilgers Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas
2009 Paul Rodriguez The University of Nebraska, Omaha, Nebraska
2010 George R. Pisani Kansas Biological Survey, Lawrence, Kansas
2011 Gregory A. Sievert Emporia State University, Emporia, Kansas



Howard Kay Gloyd-Edward Harrison Taylor Scholarship

The KHS annually grants a scholarship named for Howard K. Gloyd and Edward H. Taylor, two distinguished Kansas herpetologists.

Nominations for the award ($300.00) are open to any KHS member enrolled in an accredited educational institution. The scholarship is awarded on the basis of potential for contributing to the science of herpetology. Students from high school through university are eligible. Self-nomination is encouraged.

If self-nominated, a letter of reference from an academician is required. Nominations should include typewritten details of the nominee's qualifications, plus name and address of the nominee and nominator.

Nominations should include, but are not limited to, academic record, herpetological activities, and future plans in herpetology. Academic record should address schools attended and an indication of academic performance in each (e.g., grade point average, teacher evaluations, courses completed, etc.). Herpetological activities should include a brief narrative that details experiences and activities that demonstrate a long-term interest in herpetology, and documents accomplishments in herpetological study. Future plans in herpetology should include a statement, not to exceed one-page, written by the student about his/her future interests and plans.

Applicants may include an optional appendix with photographs, awards, newspaper articles, reports written by the student, or other documents relevant to herpetological activities.

Nominations should be sent to the KHS Awards Committee Chair, and must be postmarked by 25 September. The scholarship winner will be announced at the KHS annual meeting in November. New applications will be accepted after 1 January of the following year.

Former Recipients

1993Daren Riedle Emporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
1994Paul Shipman Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, Oklahoma
1995Kembra HowdeshellEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
1996Emily C. MoriartySt. Mary's College, Notre Dame, Indiana
1998Lani BurressEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
1999John TollefsonEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2000Kevin AldrichEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas.
2001Megan KearneyEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2002Nicole PalenskeEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2003Sean M. DalyEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2004Daphne JonesEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2005Lynett BontragerEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2006David BenderFort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas
2007Melissa BoetigWashburn University, Topeka, Kansas
2008Ashley InsleeFort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas
2009J. Kent DanielPittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas
2010Jodie HearlsonEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2011Jennifer M. SingletonEmporia State University, Emporia, Kansas



Alan H. Kamb Grant for Research on Kansas Snakes

The KHS annually awards a grant ($300.00) in honor and memory of Alan H. Kamb, longtime supporter and member of the Kansas Herpetological Society.

KHS members are eligible to apply for The Alan H. Kamb Grant for Research on Kansas Snakes. The winner will be announced at the annual meeting in November. If no qualified proposals are submitted, no award will be made for that year.

The KHS Awards Committee will entertain proposals for research on Kansas snakes. The proposal must be limited to ten typed pages, and should include, but not be limited to the following: title, name of researcher, contact information, abstract, introduction and justification, objectives or hypotheses, materials and methods, significance of research and possible results, literature cited, timetable, and proposed budget. The research must be conducted on one or more native Kansas snake species. Additionally, a majority of the field work or observations must be proposed to occur in Kansas, or the data must be proposed to be collected, at least in part, on Kansas specimens.

Proposals for this grant should be sent to the KHS Awards Committee Chair, and must be postmarked by 25 September. The grant recipient will be announced at the KHS annual meeting in November. New applications will be accepted after 1 January of the following year.

Former Recipients

2001Curtis Schmidt Fort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas
2002Chris Hutson Tabor College, Hillsboro, Kansas
2003Dustin Wilgers Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas
2003J. Kent Daniel Pittsburg State University, Pittsburg, Kansas
2004Erik Bartholomew Fort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas
2005George R. Pisani Kansas Biological Survey, Lawrence, Kansas
2006George R. Pisani Kansas Biological Survey, Lawrence, Kansas
2007Page Klug Kansas State University, Manhatttan, Kansas
2008Page Klug Kansas State University, Manhatttan, Kansas
2009Mindy Walker Rockhurst University, Kansas City, Missouri
2010Prashant Deshmukh Emporia State University, Emporia, Kansas
2011Dexter Mardis Friends University, Wichita, Kansas



George Toland Award for Ecological Research on North American Herpetofauna

The George Toland Award for Ecological Research on North American Herpetofauna was established in 2006 by the Board of Directors of The Center for North American Herpetology (CNAH) as a trust in perpetuity in recognition of the distinguished teaching career of the late George Fredrick Toland (1915-1992), a Salina (Kansas) biology teacher whose life-long field work with young folks in search of amphibians, chelonians, and reptiles was amply demonstrated in his extensive mentoring of the many students whose lives he so profoundly influenced. George was born in St. John, Kansas, on 25 September 1915. He received his Bachelor's Degree from McPherson College (Kansas) and his Master's Degree from Northern Colorado University. George taught school in the following Kansas communities: Canton, Turner, Caldwell, Minneapolis, and Salina. He was a horseman, a teacher, a poet, a writer, an author, a naturalist, a dramatics coach, a football coach, a statistician, a craftsman, a romantic, a photographer, but most of all he was a legend. He died on 15 March 1992 and is buried at his birthplace. By agreement with CNAH, the KHS annually makes an award ($200.00) in honor and memory of George Toland, a longtime supporter and member of the Kansas Herpetological Society. All students presenting papers on the ecology of North American herpetofauna at the KHS annual meeting are eligible for the George Toland Award. The winner will be announced at the conclusion of each annual meeting in November. The KHS Awards Committee will select the recipient of the George Toland Award. The recipient must be present to receive The Toland Award or another recipient will be selected.

Former Recipients

2008Steve D. Grant West Texas A&M University, Canyon, Texas
2009Emilie Blevins Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas
2010Katie Talbott Fort Hays State University, Hays, Kansas
2011Denise M. Thompson Missouri State University, Springfield, Missouri



Henry S. Fitch-Dwight R. Platt Award for Excellence in Field Herpetology

The Henry S. Fitch-Dwight R. Platt Award for Excellence in Field Herpetology was established in 2010 by the Executive Council of the Kansas Herpetological Society as a trust in perpetuity in recognition of the distinguished careers in ecological herpetology of the late Henry Sheldon Fitch (1909-2009), a faculty member in the Divison of Biological Sciences at the University of Kansas, Lawrence, and KHS Distinguished Life Member Dwight R. Platt, biology faculty emeritus at Bethel College, North Newton, Kansas. Both of these herpetologists distinguished themselves by their research excellence in the study of amphibians, chelonians, and reptiles, research amply demonstrated in their voluminous published works. For the Fitch-Platt Award, the KHS annually makes an award ($200.00) to a KHS member that, in the recent past, made a significant herpetological discovery in the field or conducted significant herpetological field work that contributed to our knowledge of these creatures. The winner will be announced at each annual KHS meeting in November. The KHS Awards Committee will select the recipient of the Fitch Platt-Award. The recipient must be present to receive The Fitch-Platt Award or another recipient will be selected.

Former Recipients

2010Stanley Roth Kansas Biological Survey, Lawrence
2011Eddie Stegall Sedgwick County Zoo, Wichita, Kansas
2011Joseph T. Collins The Center for North American Herpetology, Lawrence, Kansas
2012Joseph T. Collins The Center for North American Herpetology, Lawrence, Kansas



Publications

Collinsorum is the official publication of KHS. Issued quarterly, Collinsorum publishes manuscripts and notes of interest dealing with the biology of herpetofauna. Collinsorum also contains information and reports of Society activities. All interested persons are invited to submit items for publication as well. Manuscripts should be submitted to the Editor no later than the 15th of the month prior to the month of issuance. All manuscripts become the sole possession of the Society, and will not be returned unless special arrangements are made with the Editor. Pen and ink illustrations and photographs are also welcomed. These should be sized accordingly as no reductions can be made. Illustrations and photographs will be returned to the author only upon request.

All back issues of Collinsorum are available gratis for downloading as pdfs. The KHS is pleased to offer gratis back issues of a dues-based herpetological periodical for the first time in the history of our profession.

KHS Publications Back Issues



KHS CHECKLIST OF KANSAS AMPHIBIANS, REPTILES, AND TURTLES



Kansas Herpetofaunal Atlas



KHS Herpetological Resources



Other Kansas Resources



KHS Position Paper Regarding Rattlesnake Roundups



Former Presidents of the Kansas Herpetological Society



Former Secretaries & Treasurers of the Kansas Herpetological Society



Former Editors of the Kansas Herpetological Society



Former Keynote Speakers of the Kansas Herpetological Society



Past Annual Meeting Programs of the Kansas Herpetological Society



Past Field Trips Sponsored by the Kansas Herpetological Society



KHS Constitution



Kansas Herpetological Society Officers for 2013



Elected Members of the KHS Executive Council

President
DANIEL D. FOGELL
Academic Education Division
Southeast Community College
Lincoln, Nebraska 68520
(402-437-2870)

President-Elect
DR. WALTER E. MESHAKA, JR.
State Museum of Pennsylvania
300 North Street
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17120-0024
(717-783-9901)

Past President
DANIEL G. MURROW
1606 North Plum Street
Hutchinson, Kansas 67501
(620-314-8783)

Treasurer
DAVID OLDHAM
Department of Graphics & Imaging Technologies
Pittsburg State University
Pittsburg, Kansas 66762
(620-235-6147)

Secretary
EVA A. HORNE
Division of Biology
Kansas State University
Manhattan, Kansas 66506
(785-532-5929)



Appointed Members of the KHS Executive Council

Historian
SUZANNE L. COLLINS
The Center for North American Herpetology
1502 Medinah Circle
Lawrence, Kansas 66047
(785-393-2392)

Editor
CURTIS J. SCHMIDT
Sternberg Museum of Natural History
Fort Hays State University
Hays, Kansas 67601-2006
(785-650-2447)



KHS STANDING COMMITTEE CHAIRPERSONS

Awards
DANIEL D. FOGELL
Academic Education Division
Southeast Community College
Lincoln, Nebraska 68520
(402-437-2870)
Committee Members: George R. Pisani & Dr. Walter E. Meshaka, Jr.

Field Trips
TRAVIS W. TAGGART
Sternberg Museum of Natural History
Fort Hays State University
Hays, Kansas 67601
(785-650-2445)

Media and Publicity
ROBIN OLDHAM
716 Michigan Street
Oswego, Kansas 67356
(620-795-2293)

Nominating
DAN CARPENTER
13321 Flatland Trail
Derby, Kansas 67037
(316-776-1221)
Committee Member: David Oldham



Please advise of additions and corrections