Hello dear reader,
very soon after completing the pond there arrived all by itself the first pond frog (rana perezi). I named it Fridolin and went every day there with the hope that Fridolin was still around! What a joy every time I saw him!
Well, Fridolin had not to stay alone for long. Day by day I discovered more and more pond frogs, which first looked at me rather scared and shy and submerged immediately when I came too close. But apart from that they seem to like the pond very much. They swam long laps, explored the pond and enjoyed taking sunbath together on the little rocks in the shallow water and on the edges, climbed on the first burgeon water lilies. An idyll which I never would have thought possible!
Soon the males started to croak. Aha! Mating season came close and own territories had to be secured. The frogs until this very moment had enjoyed the sunny winter days all together, but now that was over and the males were croaking and rattling the whole day. And this also during the nights. Music in my ears! What I cannot always say about a concert from greenbacks - but about this I shall tell later!
Well the pond frogs had lots of offspring. Up to 300 frogs I counted in the big pond. Clearly overpopulated, because the smallest I met everywhere in the garden they were looking for food and water where they also would have a place. Terrible to see all these poor outcaste animals. Quickly I installed another eight mini-ponds (ready plastic pools from the garden center) Soon those were the pure frog-kinder gardens!
Some of these mini-ponds I visited very often, others only, if something had to be done. I wanted to observe if the behavior of the frogs is different when a human is often near them or not. Well, and if these animals showed a differ behavior!
At the more seldom visited mini ponds the adolescent frogs immediately took flight when they only became aware of my shadow. Totally different to the frogs who saw me every day. Soon they trustfully stayed where they were and seemed to look at me ingenuous. I assured them, that I am an animal they don´t have to fear. Do they recognize human voices? According to my experience yes, because this behavior they only showed with me, not right away with other visitors.
Midsummer came and the flies with it. The large frog population did not have to suffer from a lack of food. I was teased by these pests enough when I was sitting at the ponds edges. And then happened what I never would have expected: they got used to me so much, that they forgot to be shy at all and even caught the flies from my arms and legs. And even more: once they were sitting in my palm, I even could lift it carefully without arousing any avoidance reaction.
And I was able to watch their behavior intensively from very close by. Territoriality, quarrel, showing off, mating, cannibalism or also just the familiar dormancy, when all rivalry is forgotten and all frogs quietly move together to enjoy jointly the winter sunshine, until … yes until …. Springtime comes close and the rivalry starts from the very beginning!
And regarding the early over population: in the meantime a tawny owl is living here and also the snakes seem to help themselves on the pond. But the green 'smiley men' have many hiding possibilities in all ponds and many of them use them clever enough!
On these pages I shall tell about the many nice experiences and funny anecdotes around the grinning Spanish water frogs written and in photos. And after nearly every day there is something happening, it will be worth coming again to have a look. There is always something to smile about.
All informations and factual reports round about the Spanisch water frogs are to be found under "Home Biotope" .
Best regards from the frogs paradise