Reptiles & Amphibians

The Tadpoles Are Growing Up

Remember when we found the tiny tadpoles in the rain barrel? They've been doing a lot of growing since then and now the very first tadpole has left the pond to explore dry land. Here he is on his very first day in his new environment.

 

 

He's just a tiny little guy. His body is about a half inch long (not counting the length of his tail). He's not doing a whole lot - or maybe it's just that he's busy doing a lot of baby frog stuff and it just doesn't look like a lot to a human.

One of the other tadpoles noticed that his brother left the pond, and was very curious about the whole situation.

 

 

Most of the other tadpoles, though, are still focused on all of their busy pond activities and haven't noticed what big brother is doing. We aren't quite sure how many tadpoles are in our little plastic pond. We've counted at least 50 but have no idea how many others are hiding in the rocks at the bottom of the bond.

 

 

It is so peaceful watching little tadpoles going about their important tadpole business. They look a lot like balloon or blimps with faces. It's pretty amazing to see the changes that they go through on their way to becoming and adult frog.

It shouldn't be long before other tadpoles join their sibling on the pond shore. I wonder if the curious one from the second video will be the next one out of the water.

 

 

Look What We Found In The Rain Barrel!

A couple of days ago we found these guys in one of our rain water barrels. They are tiny little tadpoles - probably offspring of one of our local tree frogs. We've moved them out of the rain barrels and into a good sized plastic garden pond where we'll babysit them as they grow and transform into adult frogs.

In this video they are in plastic buckets, taking a little break on the porch as we moved them from the rain barrel to the new tadpole pond. They are funny looking little things - kind of like really big commas with faces.

 

 

I'm so glad we moved them when we did. We had another strong gully washer downpour again today and the rain barrels would not have been a safe place for baby frogs.

We had so many tadpoles in the barrel that we moved some of them to a little natural pond area in the creek bed. I'm afraid that those ones have taken a very wild ride today. Hopefully they all made it safely to a nice new home somewhere downstream. Our new creek ran deep and fast today and those tadpoles are probably a few miles away by now.

We are really pleased to have found such a nice crop of young tadpoles in the rain barrel. Amphibians can be quite delicate animals and a good population of amphibians is an indication that the local environment is healthy. We don't use garden chemicals that could harm our local amphibian populations and in return they grow, prosper, and provide us with a natural form of insect control. You know your garden is a healthy place when it can be a good home for animals like frogs, toads and salamanders.

I sure hope the tadpoles that got washed away end up in a safe, pollution free environment too. Downstream locations can be such a dangerous place for amphibians. Who knows what kinds of chemicals have washed off of other people's land in this storm - and how that runoff will affect all of the animals that live in the marshy areas where the streams finally come to rest.