Since Jeff built this beautiful fountain for me a few months ago, I've spent a lot of time peering in behind the rocks to monitor the adventures of our resident frogs and toads. I feel like they're pets (though I'm sure that THEY don't feel that way).
It's just perfect for this spot.
My favorite place to sit outside, the fountain bubbles and drips and makes beautiful music.
And it's so inviting - a little cooling oasis in the middle of summer sun.
If you build it, they will come! Hello, Freddie Frog. Nice to meet you. A few days after Jeff built the fountain, it became the favorite summer water park of a couple of Rio Grande Leopard frogs. Even on 105 degree days and despite its being in the sun in the afternoon, the water in the fountain remained cool and inviting every day.
And thus began the saga of the slippery ones. I'd occasionally scare one hopping from plant to plant surrounding the fountain.
And as I was becoming more and more obsessed with them, I went on the hunt for them when they weren't in the fountain.
There are two frogs enjoying our new water feature. Little Freddie, shown in the first two frog photos, and Frieda, above. I assume she is his mother, since he's bright green and her coloring is more brown and the perfect camouflage for burrowing into my pots. Sometimes they are both in the fountain together, and sometimes they spend some quality alone time in the fountain.
Then came the TOAD....
And once he got in that fountain, he didn't move. He'd spend days in there, seemingly in the same spot. A squatter - just daring the frogs to come back.
I missed my frogs, but came to like Tad, the toad, too. I'm not sure why I like frogs better than toads. Toads are lumpy and bumpy and look like they would feel icky to touch. Frogs are green and shiny and speckled and smooth and even though I wouldn't touch them (there would be that girl screaming thing along with falling back onto the ground in terror thing), they just seem prettier.
When it rained last week, Tad the toad hopped out of the fountain to frolic wherever toads and frogs frolic. He must have stayed out past curfew, because after two days of an empty fountain, Frieda, the mom frog, is back. She's just hanging out on this pretty almost-fall-like day.
I reached around to the back of the fountain with my iPhone to get this picture. They don't mind my peeking around from the front, but every now and then the dogs like to see what's going on in the fountain, so our hopping friends have taken up residence behind the rocks most of the time.
You can see some of the rocks are turning green. I've been very careful not to disturb the frogs and toads, but this week I am going to carefully remove those specific rocks and clean them by hand and rinse them and put them back into the fountain. I don't put bleach in any of my outdoor water features -- I certainly wouldn't want even a few drops of that in my gin and tonic!
I love having more wildlife friends to enjoy in our landscape, so frog or toad, they're all welcome here.
Labels: fountain, frog, toads, water feature, wildlife