Big Spawn Count 2014

common frogs mating

I’m so excited! I spotted this lovely couple in the wildlife pond early this morning, a pair of common frogs in a copulatory embrace called Amplexus. I rushed to the house to grab my camera before they disappeared. During our first spring living here we saw plenty of frog couples, but until now they had little choice but to use the large Koi pond, ending in disastrous results for the spawn.

The Koi pond
The Koi pond.
Just a few of our Koi
Just a few of our smaller Koi, the larger fish are approximately 2 feet in length.
wildlife pond
The wildlife pond in a sheltered position within the rockery, directly behind the Koi pond. A safe haven for the frog and newt community in our garden smallholding.

If this pair (or any others) spawn in the wildlife pond it will have a greater chance of becoming tadpoles, I’m especially happy because our wildlife pond is less than a year old. We decided to add an additional small pond to our garden not long after moving here, our  intention being to offer the already present frog and newt community a safe place to reproduce successfully.

Have you spotted any spawn where you are? Take part in this years Big Spawn Count and record your findings, the more people counting, the better the information to help provide more of an insight into the amorous lives of toads and frogs.

Anyone can take part in the Big Spawn Count by going to their garden or school pond, and counting the number of spawn present. You can print the form to help you complete the survey, please enter the results on-line afterwards.

http://www.freshwaterhabitats.org.uk/projects/big-spawn-count/

I’ll be watching, will you?

Frog Photoshoot

frog

The new wildlife pond is proving to be very popular with the local frog population, everyday the pond is occupied, as well as the pond edges. Because of the positioning of the pond, I’m able to get close enough to observe and photograph the frogs without making them feel threatened.

frog

Using a macro lens allows me to capture their beautiful markings and colouration in a bit more detail. These particular frogs are common frogs, but I think they’re awesome.

frog

Since adding a wildlife pond to our garden, I haven’t seen any frogs in the koi pond. I guess they prefer the safety, privacy and ease of a fish-free pond.

frogs

It may be a new pond, but already it looks as if it’s always been here. Plants are thriving, mosquito larvae are wriggling around, and water boatmen and pond skaters are arriving now too.

frog

Swapping over to another lens I captured a homely shot of this happy little soul, smiling back at me. Hopefully the frogs will spawn here next spring.

Oh the photo opportunities!

frog