Friday, June 07, 2013

Toad Orgy Proves Me Right!

Over a year ago, in the clear, crisp Florida winter, I began excavating rectangular (mostly) micro-ponds in the dry bottom of my larger pond.

My goal was to create water catchment basins that would hold water longer than it would usually last as a shallow layer spread over the "vastness" of my pond basin.

You see, the "pond" is often a dry hole in the ground, only holding water when the weather allows. It was an AWESOME LAKE back in the totally epic 2004 hurricane season, but the water has come and gone in smaller amounts since that crazy summer.

So it was that I spent some time digging these "basins" in the dry pond bottom. The were to be the flipside version of a life raft. These would be for fish and amphibians, and therefore would need to hold water, not be empty of it.

Sort of a "Life of Pisces" alternative universey kind of life raft ...

So, to get to the point, and there really is one, I promise ... they worked amazingly well.

A few months ago, when the pond swelled and I stalked it with gambusia and freshwater grass shrimp, the basins were invisible beneath the deep water.

Then, as a drought slowly dried the pond up, the basins became the last refuge for thousands of minnows and shrimps. Last week, when it seemed that they would completely dry up, I mounted a major rescue effort to dipnet as many minnows and shrimps out of the basins as possible. These went into my old tilapia tank to hunker down until wetter times.

The day before Andrea struck, the last basin went totally dry and hundreds of minnows that I had missed became part of the nutrient rich mud.

That was June 5.
On June 6, Andrea dropped enough rain to refill the basins, alas one day too late for my minnow refugees.

On the evening of June 6, after TS Andrea's winds died down, the night air was filled with the trilling of eastern toads.

Beaucoup toads, let me tell you.

This morning I walked down to the pond with the GoPro very early in dim light ... more for the sound than the sight.

What I heard, you may hear below:


6 comments:

tai haku said...

now that's a noise I could fall asleep listening to every evening. wonderful.

Katherine Edison said...

The toads thank you!

robin andrea said...

A wonderful sound!

lisa said...

Now that is some noise!

Rivrsingr said...

That made me smile! I think I heard some Chorus frogs, too.

Floridacracker said...

Hey Anura fans, we have the same taste in music! Rivr,yes I have chorus frogs down there!