Friday, July 24, 2009

Newly Emerged Frog

Newly emerged from the water that is. It (he/she -not sure so may call it a him for now) still has a tail stump and is quite active. He is living next to the little stream in my garden for now. With the spots I would say he will grow into a very handsome leopard frog provided he can make it past all the frog predators.
The background picture is of a fallen flower that happened to fall into the stream.
I cleaned out the tadpole bucket today and replaced the water as it was getting murky. Noticed all kinds of animal pond life that seems to have got in there from the plants I placed there. Including some long legged daddy long legs type arthropods (insects?) and what looks like a nymph. Something has eaten all the mosquito larvae and there are no fish in the bucket. So I am assuming that there are some predators in there too.
Not having any fish is another story. I had two guppies that I inadvertently introduced into two buckets of tadpoles early in the spring. These buckets were discovered by a larger animal - fox or racoon? Anyway the buckets were both knocked over and I lost the fish and the tadpoles. Since it was still early in the spring I managed to collect more tadpoles but have not been able to find more guppies. The guppies had been very good at eating mosquito larvae.
I discovered this because I had two buckets and noticed that one bucket had all kinds of mosquito larvae in it while the other had none. Upon closer inspection I noticed two guppies in the water in the larvae free bucket. These guppies were about 15mm long and over the next weeks they grew to twice their original size. I transferred one to the other bucket and it cleaned out all the mosquito larvae in two days. At least twenty larvae! That was one happy guppy.
But then I lost them all! Still the fox got to enjoy some high class sushi that night.
So now I have tied the bucket up to a stake in the ground so it cannot be tipped over.

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