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Adventures in Weeding

Posted by mrssmythe on June 21, 2014 in CPT's Lens, Critters, Garden |

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I’m always a bit hesitant to weed in our backyard. Surprising things pop out of the greenery.

One year, I startled an entire family of baby rabbits. I pulled out a clump of grass and they went running in all directions. They were very wee and very adorable, but also very unexpected. I screamed. I screamed loudly. I screamed so loudly, in fact, that CPT America and the girls came running – and then fell into laughter when I explained what had happened. They thought I’d been injured from the the way I’d been carrying on. Now, nobody takes me seriously when I do yard work.

Today, though, it wasn’t rabbits that popped out of the weeds – it was a North American wood frog – all pale and tan and about three inches long.

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He dropped out of one of the clumps of weeds I was holding. Plop.

These frogs are AMAZING! They can jump farther than most other frogs. They are one of the first frogs to breed in spring, and they are the only frogs that can survive north of the Arctic Circle. They do this by freezing solid in winter. Completely solid. Heart, organs, everything. They stop breathing. Their hearts stop beating. They are about as close to being dead as something  can possibly be without dying. Which is pretty crazy when you think about it.

Then, spring comes, and they thaw out and mate.

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Which is pretty crazy too.

But, lest our green frog feel slighted because I’ve written so much about the wood frog – here are some photos CPT America took this afternoon after installing a new pump in the backyard pond.
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The green frog supervised the entire process.

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The water gurgles now and moves about much more pleasantly. I think the green frog approves. I know I sure do. Thank you, CPT America.

From the dining room table, getting ready to watch a documentary on pollinators (I know, pretty geeky, but I like that sort of thing),

Mrs. Smythe

P.S. Here’s a parting shot of the pond lily. So pretty – it almost doesn’t look real.

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8 Comments

  • IrishMum says:

    I love all the wildlife you have in your garden. Though here frogs are food for snakes, and I wouldn’t want them!!

    • mrssmythe says:

      We love it too. It’s one of our favorite things about the yard. And, if we had the kinds of snakes here that you have in Australia, I don’t think I’d be that keen on having “snake bait” in the yard, either. I’d be throwing the frogs over the fence.

  • Amy says:

    I’m afraid I would have screamed when I saw the frog. Sure, he seems a friendly enough sort of fellow from afar . . . but, I don’t know. I do like lizards, however, so maybe it’s not that far of a leap. 🙂

    • mrssmythe says:

      Once I knew he was there, I was okay – but it’s always very startling when something pops out of the grass like that – I don’t care what it is. I usually scream. People are getting used to it. The neighbor said “hello” to me the other day while I was walking one of the dogs, and I screamed. I must just kind of zone out.

  • Kristi says:

    Is it just me or does that wood frog look like a snake in the face?

    • mrssmythe says:

      In the first picture, he does a bit. But I’m not going to think about that, because I’m not a big fan of snakes. We have one that lives near the garden hose and I’ve been startled by him on more than one occasion. He never does anything, but it’s enough to just see him lying there, sunning himself.

  • Jane says:

    Tell your frogs they are free to come next door to eat some slugs, I’ll be putting out tins of beer tomorrow, they can share that with the slugs if they want!

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