|A well-camouflaged, partially burrowed toad cools off in the sand during a hot summer day
July 30, 2012
For someone who has lived next to lakes and marshland for most of her life, I know remarkably little about fish and frogs.
I see small fish swimming in the shallow water and large fish jumping where the water is deep, but other than being aware of their presence I know little about their specific identities.
The same is true for frogs and toads. I notice the small green frogs that hide in my mailbox and bumpy-backed toads that burrow in the sand beneath the rowboat during daylight hours. But if you asked me which type of frog or toad they were, my answer would at best be a guess. In the evening, I enjoy listening to the cacophony of bellows, croaks and peeps that fill the air though have no idea which song belongs to which critter.
|An unidentified frog sits on the proverbial lily pad
The transformation from egg to tadpole to frog or toad takes about 16 weeks to complete although it varies from species to species. Either way, that means I still have plenty of time to learn more about the tail-wagging swimmers that have appeared in my lake.
Nature is a constant source of mystery and wonder. When the tadpoles appeared, I became aware of how little I know about certain species. But I was also reminded of how much I want to learn about the world outside my door. A lack of knowledge is a good thing when it opens the window to continued learning and exploration.
Some nights, when the air resounds with a rhythmic chorus of bellows, croaks and peeps, I hope to open my window and do more than just enjoy the sounds of my surroundings. I want to be able to identify some of my amphibian neighbors. After all, we share a love for both land and water. The least I can do is to learn a few of their names.