mark scherz


Boophis anjanaharibeensis by Mark Scherz


A small selection of the frogs I photographed in Marojejy, NE Madagascar in 2016. Click the photo to see the species name.

Photos by Mark D. Scherz © 2016.


Gephyromantis striatus by Mark Scherz


Uroplatus phantasticus by Mark Scherz


Lycodryas cf. granuliceps by Mark Scherz

Do you wanna build a phylogram?
Mark Scherz
Do you wanna build a phylogram?

A scientific parody of Do you wanna build a snowman? from Disney’s Frozen. Lyrics by hyacynthus and myself. Vocals by me. A music video may be forthcoming.


Portia schultzi Karsch, 1878

This little spider is one of the most intelligent arthropods on the planet. Their behaviour is bizarrely familiar, and they show signs of reasoning, planning, and focus. I encourage you to read the wikipedia article about them.

I found this individual on the wall of a hotel in eastern central Madagascar, just outside the Anjaha Community Reserve. I have a deep love of salticids, and although I couldn’t identify it initially, I immediately knew it was something special. The result was the most satisfying photoshoot I can remember. Such an enchanting animal.

Photos © Mark D. Scherz, 2014


Vistas in the Bealanana district of northern Madagascar.

Photos © Mark D. Scherz, 2016

Boophis andreonei 

I spent this winter in a forest in northwestern Madagascar, where my team and I were investigating the herpetofaunal diversity of some unstudied tracts of forest, and how their distribution is affected by proximity to the edge of the forest. The next few months will be spent processing the data and writing reports and papers. I estimate we found at least four, but perhaps as many as ten, new species. I’ll keep you posted on progress! In the mean time, my blog will be featuring some photos from the field :)

Photo © Mark D. Scherz, 2015

The Open Man

There’s man with a hole
that goes straight through his soul
and it’s open for all to see.

Just ask and he’ll tell 
every joy, every hell,
and how it all came to be.

He will tell you unbidden;
no secret is hidden;
and he’ll speak with a gleam in his eyes.

But he hides in the shell
of the stories he tells;
each story a cunning disguise.

It’s easy to heal
when all that you feel
is bared like a page in a book,

but the depths of a hole
in a broken man’s soul
depends on how deeply you look.

Each story’s a mask
with the ultimate task
of hiding the tears at the seams.

Tears in the heart
are bad for a start 
but there’s noting like tears in your dreams.

By Mark Scherz