Thursday, March 13

Tell-tale splashes

We usually hear them before we see them. When we go out into the garden, if we don't shut the house door very quietly, we hear the plops as they disappear under water. 

In a few minutes they resurface under the pond weed with just their eyes and nostrils visible.

Eyes and nostrils are placed high so they can keep an eye out for danger and manage to breathe at the same time.

Once we are aware of their presence we leave the house quietly and can sneak up on them for a better view. The sneaking is made all the more easier as our pond is higher than the house ground level and so our approach is out of froggy view.
The pond is in front of the summerhouse and behind the pot of ferns. Don't look too closely at the patio as that is one more task on the 'royal we's' to do list.
When they are not involved in more amorous activities, our visitors like to sprawl out on the surface of the water and conserve their energy whilst keeping a look out for any potential mate or danger.

The males will often compete by producing a gutteral chorus of deep throated croaks.

The frogs always leave their spawn in the same place in our pond. It nestles in pond weed producing a floating raft of living jelly.

Our fish regard the spawn as a delicacy and so it is fortunate that evolution has provided for this and frogs produce such an enormous amount. 

There is often a sentry frog guarding the spawn for a while. The group below seem to have all approaches covered.



28 comments:

  1. That first photo is a classic! My "pond" is a bit small for frogs, I fear, but I expect there are already a few tiny creatures inhabiting it. The food-chain has to start somewhere.

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    1. I love taking froggy photos, Mark. According the my photo library I have 430 frog photos and those are just the ones I;ve remembered to tag

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    1. They were on guard again today, Jessica

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  3. Are your local frogs spawning already?? Love the sentinel photo :)

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    1. They are, Tanya and it looks as if they have been very busy.

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  4. Great to hear and see Sue! I bet you always enjoy looking out for that living jelly in your pond with excitement every year. You've got lots of plants for shelter there. I picked up my first pond plants yesterday - a long way to go yet but its a good start :-)

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    1. The duckweed grows like crazy, Shirley and we are forever removing great batches of it

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  5. Great photos. Still no frogspawn in my pond, I think it must be too small for them, but we do get loads of tiny frogs in the garden as the year goes on.

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    1. They must spawn close by then, Jo

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  6. The photos are great, I'm planning a larger pond for the front garden, I'm getting rather jealous of all the posts I'm reading about frogspawn. I want some too.

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    1. Build your pond and they will come, Jo

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  7. Lovely photos.. I'm so jealous of your little froggy friends.. I do miss having them in our pond.

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    1. They're lovely aren't they, Julie. I think they are cute.

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  8. You are brave Sue! Those frogs could take your face off! I have a terrible fear of them made worse when one jumped into my boat with me when I was cleaning the large pond out. I knew it was there just waiting to latch onto my face but I couldn't see it. I dropped the oar in my panic and literally stood in the boat screaming my head off in the middle of the pond. I dread to think what Mr TG thought when he saw me! I finally managed to throw the rope far enough for him to pull me back in but as I was getting out I felt something touch my leg - did I freak or what! I screamed, running to the house yanking my clothes off. Turned out it was pond weed that touched me but I didn't know that lol.
    Like I said you're very brave Sue. Just the sound of the frogs today had me freaking out - maybe I should attempt to photograph them to get over my fear? Mind you just the thought of that is making my heart race lol.

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    1. My father-in-law didn't like frogs either. Where has the idea come from that they latch onto your face. I've photographed and handled plenty and never had that happen. I did have one on my hand once that didn't want to jump off when I tried to let it go.Being cold blooded I think it was enjoying soaking up the warmth from my hand.

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  9. I'm excited to say that we have our own frogspawn for the first time in our pond, rather than going round to a neighbour with a jam jar

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    1. Maybe from frogs that hatched from your imported spawn, L. Frogs are supposed to try to return to their birth pond to spawn. Unless that is just an urban myth.

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  10. What a wonderful post, I really enjoyed it. How marvelous to see your frogs on sentry duty like that and all that frogspawn. Our frogs always spawn in the same place too. and only ever use the front pond totally ignoring the back one.xxx

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    1. Is one in shade and the other sunny, Snowbird? Maybe you can transport some spawn to the other pond.

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  11. The third photo is wonderful. You certainly seem to have plenty of frogs, despite the fish. I love your summerhouse, fantastic. I'd happily curl up in there for the afternoon with a good book.

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    1. We usually have lots more CJ so maybe some are later arrivals. The summerhouse is a lovely place to sit. We often have lunch there but not just yet

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  12. The frogs are beautiful and the "Royal We's" to-do list really struck a chord. I shall steal that name - it might bestow patience where it is dwindling!

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    1. Martyn only said yesterday that he saw I had sneaked in the bit about the patio, Sarah so it will have to be done now I've announced to the world.

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  13. Fantastic frog pictures. We are inundated with frog spawn, it's our first time but the frogs know what they're doing laying it on top of the netting over the pond so the fish dont get it!

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    1. Thanks, Jenni Will the spawn be left high and dry in the pond level goes down?

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  14. My pond really needs cleaning out but I hate to di it this time of year as I know I disturb the toad's and frogs...it will just have to look messy for a while longer!!! Of course...I still have to sort out the pond for the bee plot!!

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    1. Our pond has a filtration system, Tanya which helps.

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