Instant Frogs

25 Dec

Every summer, native frogs move into my 600-gallon turtle pond. The nearest “real” pond is probably a mile away, so I don’t see any frogs until  July or August. I’m always excited to see that one has finally found my yard.

Frog in the 30 gallon pond.

The species that come are either the Bullfrog, the Green Frog, or the Leopard Frog. This year, it was 3 Green Frogs and one young Bullfrog.

If you have an outdoor pond, and it gets cold in the Winter, the frogs will eventually attempt to hibernate in it. In the wild they will go down into the leaves and muck on the bottom of their pond.  My pond has a rubber liner (EPDM) and they can’t dig in. I have found a couple of dead frogs in my pond in the Springtime.  It is discouraging to think that the pond attracts them, they have a great summer, then die over the winter.

I'll have a Frog on the Rocks.

I had a choice to make.

Option One: I could dump a few bagfuls of leaves into the pond, hook up an aquarium air pump and run an airline into the pond to oxygenate it. I think they would have a good chance of surviving.

Instead, as it got colder, I decided to capture the 4 frogs. That was challenging. The pond is 4 feet deep and the water is not that clear. Over the course of a week I finally captured the fourth frog with a big dip net. I still had choices of what to do with the frogs.

Option Two: Take them to a real pond and release them. Makes sense,  it’s easy, they should do OK.

Option Three: Bring them indoors for the Winter, feed them worms and crickets, then as soon as possible next Spring, release them back into my turtle pond. That way I will have Instant Frogs in the pond.

The big male Green Frog lives here for the winter.

Being selfish about keeping my Frogs, I decided to keep them over the winter. They are doing fine so far. I keep the biggest male apart from the others. Hopefully, they will lay some eggs in the pond early next Spring before I move the turtles out there. I also have a little 30 gallon pond out there so I can raise tadpoles if I should be so fortunate.

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