I have not posted a blog entry for over a year. Hey, I’m old. It feels like it was a decade ago. Then it feels like it was yesterday. Honestly, I’ve been a little busy.
One thing that is keeping me occupied right now are the polliwogs that are growing in my patio fountain.
It has not been a good season for frogs here. It warmed up early, they emerged from winter’s sleep, and then it got cold. I am guessing it hurt the population. Usually we have a few hopping around outside on the patio and walks. I was going out every night with the flashlight looking around and could find no one.
Then one night we heard the call from the patio. Go here and click on Gray Tree Frog. I ran outside and saw this: a gray tree frog.
Often I will find these guys sleeping tucked up in the patio umbrella. When the umbrella is down, they crawl up into the nice cozy cloth and fall asleep clinging to the pole. They must think the umbrellas are trees. And boy, can they can sing. It is really loud. We could hear it through the closed window.
I was so excited to see someone. The next night we heard her again. I went out with the flashlight and found her halfway submerged in our fountain. You will see it in the video. The previous owners built it and it is fun to have. Water is supposed to come out of the lion’s mouth but honestly, it sounds like someone peeing. So I stopped using it. I have a pump with a water aerator attached that makes a nice babbling brook sound.
I had just put algae killer in the water. Afraid the frog was going to absorb who knows what chemicals, I ran for my trusty net and tried to get her out. She hopped into the water, swimming around. I finally netted her and put her in a tree.
A few days later I went to clean the fountain and I saw a clump of clear bubbles with black dots. I yelled to Matt. There are frogs eggs! She laid eggs in the fountain! A few days later they hatched and about fifty or so tadpoles were swimming around in the water. They are easily confused with mosquito larvae. So I checked the font of all knowledge–the internet–to figure out the difference. What I also learned is that the ph of the water is very important and so is the mineral content. Of course, I was filling the fountain with tap water and that is not good for frogs. I was not sure what to do but God came along and helped.
It started to rain. and it rained and it rained. Fifteen inches worth. The fountain practically overflowed. And it was wonderful, natural water from the sky. My ph/chlorine problem was solved. But still, not very many tadpoles make it in nature and they slowly disappeared until there were two. I decided to not clean the fountain because tadpoles eat algae. So I had to let it go. The internet also told me they will eat lettuce if there is not enough algae. I started throwing spinach into the fountain too. It has made the water a murky green but that’s okay. I’ll clean it later.
They are getting so big. As you can see in the picture, the eyes are prominent and the body is fairly large. I’ve named them Polli and Wog. Wog the the friendly one. He is not afraid of anything. Polli is smaller and she hides. They dart around the fountain searching for food. It is so much fun to watch. If they make it to froghood, I am going to be ecstatic. I’ll sing Born Free and all that.
Here is a short video.