Thursday, May 21, 2009

Nursery Tails

High: 77 °F
Low: 41 °F
Conditions: Increasing Clouds.

Signs of spring are all around us. Our neighbors report that the local fox family has given birth to three kits, and rumor has it that mom is letting them spend their early mornings romping in the hay field.

Just this morning, Ari and I found remnants of avian newborns as well:

What I really wanted, though, was to find out what's been happening with our local amphibean population. We've seen them as adults:

And as eggs:

However, our knowledge of what happens in between has always been more theoretical than practical. That is, until today.
It was Ari who found the tadpoles on our morning run. And, in truth, hers was more of an accidental than a deliberate discovery (read: she simply wanted a drink of water).

But once she got past the simple need to alleviate thirst, the canine naturalist was transfixed by what she found: a whole puddle full of these guys.

Left as eggs by their parents (who return to their home ponds), these tadpoles have to weather all kinds of threats to their wellbeing, including porcupines and raccoons.

Those that make it will eventually sprout legs and, driven by primordial DNA, will seek out their elders in the home pond. That is, of course, if they manage to weather a gregarious canine naturalist's doggy paddle first.


Khyra The Siberian Husky And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Tank woo fur sharing!

I'm sure all of those opportunities would make me SMILE!


Stella said...

Such fun for Ari to stomp around in these wiggly things!


TwoSpecialWires said...

Eeewwww. No tadpoles swam up your nose, did they Ari? I hope not! That would tickle! But we're guessing you'd just sneeze them out, back into their water so they could grow!

Keep us posted on their development, if you can. OK?

Happy hiking,
Jake (with a new tint) and Fergi

Life With Dogs said...

I hope none were accidentally consumed :) Pass the Tums!

The Thundering Herd said...

Sounds like a major fishing expedition to us! And seafood can be so tasty (though we have never had tadpoles).

The Army of Four said...

If you look at that first picture of you real fast, you look like a Corgi, cuz the water is hiding most of your legs. Ha roo roo roo!
Great post - that froggy is soooo cool!
Play bows,

Gus, Louie and Callie said...

Looks like you found some friends there Ari..
Have a great weekend...
Thanks for the birthday wishes..

Big Sloppy Kisses
Gus, Louie and Callie

The OP Pack said...

Thanks for the great lesson - we wonder what they taste like - we might prefer them barbecued:-)

woos, the OP Pack

Lorenza said...

Tadpoles!! Pawesome!
Good luck to them!
Kisses and hugs

Tracey and Huffle said...

I'm sure Ari just wanted to play with them!

Huffle Mawson

MyRagan said...


Have you read Terry Tempest Williams? I hadn't heard of her until tonight, when I heard this beautiful interview with her on NPR's To the Best of our Knowledge.

I thought of your after hearing her. I wonder why. You'll have to tell me.


P.S. Shane was in town for a week. I am exhausted by that man.

Pippa said...

Misery loves frogs - she used to have some in her pond when she lived in the UK. There are some near my Spanish finca too - they live in the water courses that irrigate the fields.


Amber and Nala said...

Aren't they cute little guys....those tadpoles. :)

Steve, Kat, & Wilbur said...

Do you ever try to eat 'em?