Frogs 

Seems like ages ago since frog spawn first arrived in my pond but not even four months on we’ve nearly got froglets . My own personal pest controllers in the making…

IMG_4952.JPGsoon they will be all over the place and cutting my grass is about to become a real challenge but well worth it .so tiny 

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Frogs and Toads- What is the Difference ?

Frogs and Toads are a huge part of our wildlife here in Britain, but do you know the differences between these to creatures?

FROGS

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  • Have long legs so are able to jump good distances . They have a mucus on they’re skin which makes them feel slimy
  • Their body is quite narrow and they have many predators .
  • They also lay their spawn in clusters . And they need to stay near water .

TOADS

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  • shorter legs and are more likely to walk- although they can jump a little bit.
  • Their skin is much rougher and thicker .
  • They lay their spawn in strands but don’t need to stay near water other than when they spawn . They have fewer prey as they can secrete a horrible taste and smell.

I have both in my garden. What have you got? 

Frogs and Toads

camcorder 2 073camcorder 2 074camcorder 2 414Frogs or toads what can I say , they’re marmite aren’t they ? You either love them or hate them !

They’re a natural pesticide. Yes they’re slimy and yes they’re cold but they will reduce the need for slug pellets which are harmful to pets and other invertebrates which are so important to the natural balance of the landscape , 

I love it in the summer when there’s a rainstorm .they all come out of the woodwork.

This mild spring has caused me an issue . I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many tadpoles in my pond . So I’m going to give them a bit of extra help as the pond isn’t big enough to sustain this many. You find out more in my Frog Spawn and Tadpoles post…

The main thing which helps keep these little creatures thriving is regular water top ups to help keep the water fresh . And plenty of pond weed to oxygenate it.

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I’ve also installed a solar water fountain to also help oxygenate the water.

Also I’m going to feed them . Any freshwater fish food will do- however pellets are better as they float on the surface. I also slice up any leftover cucumber and throw that in. You could even throw them a few bits of raw chicken or beef (the bits you cut off and usually throw in the bin) and they love it- but if your struggling to keep the water fresh leave this out. If you look after your tadpoles in this way, soon enough you’ll have loads of tiny froglets emerging from your pond!

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I will of course be sharing regular updates on my tadpoles as they develop fully into frogs.

Bumble Bees 

It’s still a little early to see bumble bees . But the ones you’re seeing now are out to find they’re new nesting site so it’s a good time to start looking at flowers that will encourage them if you want to help these struggling and vital insects .

I have a few favourites that always seem to be swarming with bees .

Buddleia are a very good attraction to bees and butterflies hence common name “butterfly bush ” it’s really easy to grow and maintain plus you get the best of both worlds with aromatic flowers.

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Forget Me Not

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Foxgloves

although I advise against these if you have dogs as they’re poisonous to them

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Wallflowers

( very vibrant colours and extremely aromatic )

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Ceonothus

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Ribes 

A member of the currant family

Another good idea is to try a cottage garden seed mix simply scatter and see what happens.

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This was mine last year!

If you want to buy bedding plants . I’ve found poppies , French marigolds and cosmos also draw our striped friends in.

If you plant just a few of these plants in your garden you will see an increase of bees in your garden .

Have you ever looked closely at a bumble bee ? There are around 24 species of bumble be and nearly 250 species of bees in the UK!

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When these furry friends do make their way into my garden I will be sure to share more with you, but for now- why not get your garden bee ready?

A View from my Pond 

Take a closer look at this photo . Believe it or not , this isn’t compost it’s a small section of my pond . So many tadpoles it’s hard to separate them . I’ve never had so many!

I like to encourage frogs into the garden as they reduce the need for insecticides especially slug pellets which I like to avoid using as I have two dogs: One springer “Archie ” and a sprocker “Millie “.

So well this year I’m definitely going to have to supplement the tadpoles diet . But not just yet as they’re still feeding on their egg sacks . I will give you updates as the next few weeks go on.

 

Frog Spawn and Tadpoles

This year, although it’s only march, is already potentially problematic for the wildlife in our gardens.

The mild but wet spring means not enough food for the bees . And as in my garden, there is an alarming amount of tadpoles that- unless I intervene- won’t be able to sustain themselves in my pond.

But I do have a back up plan . Easy things you can do to just give nature a gentle helping hand. I will be detailing exactly what I’ll be doing to keep these little creatures alive over the next few weeks, but for now take a look at some of the tadpoles I have in my pond right now, and trust me, this is only a fraction of what’s in there.

In the meantime, why not head over to my new Facebook Page and give it a thumbs up!

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