Thursday, 27 March 2008

Barleycorn Froggie Hoedown

"All together now right hand star,
Back by the left hand not too far,
Face your partner do-si-do,
Face your corner do-si-do.
Swing your partner round and round
Now find another couple and circle up
Go find another couple and circle up four,
Brand new couple and a brand new four

Circle-to-the-left, around-you-do
All-the-way go two-by-two

Prom-en-ade-her, round-you-go
All-the-way and-don't-be-slow

Circle to the left, go round you do
All the way go two by two
Circle to the left, go round the ring

All the way and hear me sing
Promenade, back home you do
All the way go two by two
Promenade around you know
Take the lady back, home you go”


shirl said...

Hi there Wildlife Gardener, what great photos :-D

Love the accompanying text too. I see I've missed the transition from winter to Spring in your garden - although snow is expected again tomorrow. I'll have to browse back a few posts to see what you have been up to now :-D

Nancy said...

Gracious Heavens! That is one HUGE deposit of frog eggs. Do you have a pond big enough to handle the whole population explosion?

I ask, because my little pond requires me to take out most of the eggs and relocate them to an alternate hatching point (a kiddie pool) lest my fish become nothing more than floaters....

Barbara said...

Great pictures and a funny matching text. You'll have a big frog concert in summer I guess ;-) !! Hope you like this kind of music...?
Have a good time!

A wildlife gardener said...

A warm welcome to the Froggie Hoedown at our little corner of paradise.

This Spring for the first time in 17 years, we found twelve dead frogs in the ponds. They were in the shape of large round white opaque balls of firm jelly...not like the transparent frogspawn...with bits of body, head, legs sticking out here and there.

It is a complete mystery to us and after making enquiries to a few frog organisations, we are none the wiser.

The good news is that a great many frogs gathered over the past few days and I managed to make a little video which should be ready very soon.

Welcome back, shirl. Great to have your company again. Glad you like the photos :)

Welcome, Nancy. thank you for introducing yourself. Our ponds are roughly 25x25 square fairly large. They are solely for wildlife...frogs, toads, newts and we have no fish in them.

We had about 40 frogs today :)

Lovely to see you, Barbara. I thought the Hoedown square-dance epitomised the frenzied activity of the frogs today :)

G3T Films said...

Wow! Frogs are so excellent. Must be great to be able to watch frogs in your own garden.

We have plenty of Skinks but unfortunately no frogs. And we live right near a swamp... it's a very pretty swamp, but yes, it IS a swamp.

Sandy said...

Oh this was cool!! Great photos and loved the "dance"...


Gowri said...

Superb pictures...I was just wondering ...does this huge population of frogs attract any predatory birds at all? Because here in India, we invariably find a good many hawk-eagles and kingfishers in places where there are good number of frogs and toads.

Chris said...

Great to see your frogs :-) Quite a bit of the spawn in our pond was unfertilised and turned white which is a shame. Also our fish are disappearing, a bit of a disaster on the pond front - not herons, we have found pieces of fish! Great to see yours doing so well :-)

Cheryl said...

Lovely post wildlife gardener. Extra special because there is no sign of spawn or frogs in the local ponds. Extremely worrying.

Love the barn dance as well, brought back a lot of memories.

Have a good weekend.

smilnsigh said...

So cute. I'm still waiting for snow to be all gone, around here. Yish...

A wildlife gardener said...

Good morning to you all and welcome to our little corner of paradise.

Great to see you back, gt3 films. It is great to watch the frogs when they come together. It is like watching a kind of ballet, in fact :)

Welcome, dear Sandy. Glad you enjoyed the froggie dance :)

Dear Thalia, lovely to have your company again. On two occasions we had a pesky heron (beautiful bird though :) gobbling up our frogs...but, mostly, the frogs come and go without trouble.

It must be quite disheartening, Chris, to see things go wrong in your pond. I have read about a frog disease. Perhaps it has affected some of the frogs in your area. Let's hope for a better outcome next year :)

A warm welcome, dear Cheryl. I think it is worrying when the ponds are empty of the natural wildlife. Too many farmers still use pesticides and chemicals... and the wind carries airborne spores.

When we were children, ponds were overflowing with frogspawn. We must do everything we can to help endangered wildlife, even the humble frog :)

It will go very soon now, smilnsigh, and, after such a long wait, you will appreciate the glory of the Spring even more :)

Teresa said...

Such a fun and enjoyable post. Was humming along as I scrolled downwards. You must have been amused while watching their antics and taking pictures.

Sally said...

You square dance in Scotland?!? LOL You always manage to surprise me W.G.

Kathleen said...

omg, this is hilarious!!!! What a creative person you are to pair the frogs with square dancing. Your garden looks beautiful.

Miranda Bell said...

What superb pictures... not always that you can picture frogs like this as they all tend to disappear underwater as soon as you're anywhere near!
Have a good weekend - Miranda

Colette said...

Really enjoyed the frog dance. Great pics. There are two ponds on our property here on the coast of Northern California. We just moved here last summer so this is the first time we've experienced the frogs at our ponds. Ours became invisible whenever we went near. So it is great to see your pics and know just what ours were up to when we were not looking. :) We were enthralled by their songs, day and nite. Sounded like hundreds of them. Thanks for the pics and the fun song/dance. Geat job.
I'm a first time visitor of your blog. Will check back often. Thanks.

Libbys Blog said...

I don't think I have ever seen so many frogs in a pond for ages. Brilliant! Even better that they dance as well!!!

Petunia's Gardener said...

Glad to see you all are having such a great time there. WHat a dance! - Paula

Green thumb said...

That shows; no one absolutely no one can capture nature in this manner than an ardent nature lover like you. This post and the pics are genuinely a collectors' item.
I never knew that one could view a spawning activity so romantically!

A wildlife gardener said...

A warm welcome to you all to our little corner of paradise on this very wet April Fool's Day.

Lovely to meet you, Teresa. thank you for introducing yourself to the garden. It was great fun taking all the photos of the frogs as well as several attempts at filming them, Teresa. unfortunately the video has not successfullt uploaded yet. I'm not sure what's gone wrong this time. i can watch them on the computer...they just won't upload. Sad, because I'd like to share the fun :)

I don't know where my ideas come from either, dear Sally. They surprise me too :)

I'm glad you enjoyed the fun, Kathleen. As the frogs danced around the pond the music just came into my head :)

Oh, the frogs disappeared when they saw me coming, Miranda. But I just sat there at the side of the pond, in the rain, and waited...and waited. Very soon they came up for air and began to dance regardless of my I clicked the camera, and shot a few films ...which I'm still hoping to upload :)

A very warm welcome to you, Colette. Lovely to meet you. You and I have frogs in common now. I hope you can take a few pics and show them on your blog too :)

Hello, dear Libby, and welcome to you too. Yep! They are all-singing, all-dancin' froggies here at Barleycorn :)

Lovely to have your company, Petunia's Garden. We sure had a-lotta fun :)

Making babies is a very romantic activity, dear Green Thumb, and the frogs really did dance as if they were in formation, competing at the Olympics :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for inviting me to your Froggie Hoedown . I love it!

Yes, thank you, I am doing fine and finally back home. I'll be garden-blogging again soon.

A wildlife gardener said...

That's great to hear, dear Becky. I'll pop over soon to catch up with you :)

Crafty Green Poet said...

wonderfully beautiful photos, I love frogs.

A wildlife gardener said...

I do too, Crafty Green poet. Now we have two things in common, poetry and frogs :)

Jeanne said...

I love all that you share.
Thanks for your visits and kind words.
Love Jeanne

joey said...

A most clever post and endearing post! Always a joy lingering in your 'Little Corner of Paradise'. I drag my feet leaving ... ;)

Bimbimbie said...

Very funny *!* Our frogs were busy doing what comes naturally this summer ... but they must be a little shy only getting together under the cover of darkness ;) Smiles

Marie said...

It's a very busy time for the frogs in spring :)

Mark said...

Great pictures and a fun time had by all I bet.Interesting markings on some of your frogs. Mine did their stuff to, so hopefully plenty of frogletts later on, although not as many as yours.
I'm glad to hear that you will be giving the habitat tower a go, I'm quite excited to see how it develops and I'm looking forward to seeing how you get on.

Cheers Mark

linda may said...

I love your blog. And the previous post; beautiful, just beautiful,I am jealous, I have just left my beloved garden to move into a rented house and an eagerly awaiting having my own patch of dirt to play in when we buy our own house later in the year.

kate smudges said...

I was imagining all the frogs dressed in square dancing clothes and the caller directing them about. This was a wonderful post! Those frogs are big ... ours are much smaller!

Rosehaven Cottage said...

I just came over from Kylee's at Our Little Acre. So I glad I did so I could "witness" the froggy hoedown. Our little tiny Pacific tree frogs are too shy to "hoedown" during daylight and when I can take photos. So it's fun to see yours.

Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

guild-rez said...

Wonderful pictures..
Are the frogs posing for you?
Thank you for your visit and comment.


Ki said...

Your frogs are certainly fecund! I've never seen so many eggs and frogs massed in one place. Amazing they let you get so close or are you using a very long lens?

Kylee said...

Oh, just pure delight, that's what this is!

A wildlife gardener said...

It's a beautiful Spring morning here in the Barleycorn garden with daffodils and lambs lighting up the countryside.

A warm welcome, Jeanne, to our little corner of paradise. I'm so glad you enjoyed your visit. lovely to see you :)

It's wonderful to have your company, as always, dear Joey. Thank you for your gracious words :)

Hey there, Bimbimbie! As you say, our frogs are not shy, and when they are 'occupied' with a fair amount of patience on my part it is not too hard to capture their antics with my camera :)

Yes, indeed, they say, 'In Spring a young man's fancy turns to thoughts of love' :)

Great to have you visiting our garden again, Mark. As you say, the frogs have interesting patterns, each one quite unique.

My hubbie and I will try to make a habitat tower this Spring. We saw them at the Chelsea Flower Show last year, and yours reminded me to remind my hubbie (!) that he would be helping me to make one :)

Thank you for introducing yourself, Linda May, to our garden. You are most welcome. i am glad you have enjoyed the visit and I wish you well with your new patch later in the year :)

Well, dear Kate, I must say that you and I are kindred spirits, as I, too, imagined that scene...and you accompanying them on your fiddle :)

How lovely to meet you, Cindy, from Rosehaven Cottage. Welcome to our little corner of paradise. I'm glad you enjoyed the hoedown. I must pop over to see if there are any tiny Pacific tree frogs in your garden :)

Well, dear Guild-Rez, you might well ask if they were posing for kinda looked that way. After I had sat by the side of the pond for a wee while, so that they would get used to my presence, they got on with the job in hand and ignored me :)

My camera is a Caplio R6, Ki, with a 7.1x optical zoom lens. It is very good for me as it is lightweight and small to transport and has a wide-angle lens and a macro facility too. The lens range is 28-200mm. They like to spawn in the shallows at the margins of the ponds, which means I was able to be close to them :)

Glad you enjoyed the fun, dear Kylee. I enjoy sharing with everyone who visits the garden :)

Ruth Welter said...

Hi WG, there is a place my husband and I go that has a lily pond and that pond has tons of frogs in it. It is a great place to get photos of them...Reminds me of yours.

A wildlife gardener said...

Hi, Ruth, lovely to have your company once more. Ponds provide interest the whole year round. I sit at the margins of ours, fascinated, and watch as time goes by...just as I did as a child with my brother by my side :)

The Goldfish Guy said...

Hi there,

That's too funny :)

Your a very creative person like someone else said. I had a good laugh, the froggie hoedown :)

Very cute!

Yeah I know those frogs can really lay eggs. I know in our ponds we have literally thousands upon thousands each year. I have 10 ponds and every spring we see a little Froggie Hoeddown as well :)

Maybe I'll take a few pictures and show you as well this spring and I'll post them on my blog and maybe exchange links to each post. It's quite amazing how many eggs they lay, They literally are all over the pond liners and all the water lilies, crazy. You got to watch where you step after they develop into frogs when walking in the yeard :)

Great post, loved it!


Jamie Boyle
The Goldfish Guy

A wildlife gardener said...

Hi Jamie! Great to see you again in our little corner of paradise. I can well imagine you tip-toeing around the yard when there are a great many tiny frogs hopping about...we are exactly the same here at Barleycorn :)

Surya said...

Great photos of frogs in a pond...

Q said...

Thank you for a very fun time!
Froggie hoedown had me laughing.
Having a large pond near must be a joy.
I just poured another cup of coffee, hope you do not mind me staying around for awhile.
I have catching up to do...

Yolanda Elizabet said...

ROTFL, that was brilliant, such a fun post. Thanks!

It's amazing isn't it, how a pond can be riddled with frogs all of a sudden and later on turn into a very thick soup with all that frog spawn.

A wildlife gardener said...

Thank you for introducing yourself, Surya, to our little corner of paradise. You are most welcome. Come again :)

Hello again, Sherry, from q. Lovely to have your company. The frogs are great fun and keep us and the cats amused :)

You are quite correct, Yolanda Elizabet. One corner of the pond is full of spawn now with a handful of frogs guarding it each day. It is one of the shallow margins where the sun always shines and keeps the spawn warm while the tadpoles are developing. I think we do not have as much spawn in the back pond as the shallowest shelf is deeper and therefore colder for the spawn :)

shoshana said...

I love that!

Why are there so many frogs? Are they on a frog farm or something?

A wildlife gardener said...

Goog morning, Shoshana, and welcome to our little corner of paradise. Lovely to make your acquaintance.

The frogs gather in the Spring for the annual mating season, hence the reason for 40 of them gathering in our ponds :)

The Garden Faerie said...

What a beautiful photo essay. You remind me to include more photos in my posts. Out of curiosity, where do you store all your pix?

Also, I was stunned to realize that I know frogs and toads by sound, not sight. I've taken part in a volunteer frog survey each spring. We go out at night, to assigned sites we monitor each year, and identify species from types and frequencies of calls. Aside from a bull frog and spring peeper, it dawned on me I couldn't ID a frog in the daytime, unless it "spoke"! Must fix that! :)

A wildlife gardener said...

Lovely to have your company, Garden Faerie. A warm welcome to you once more.

We only have one species of frog hereabouts so it is easy to identify it by its song...which is like the sound of a distant motor-bike.

I have been on bat watches and badger watches but not frog watches. Your volunteer frog surveys sound interesting.

I store all my photos on a Blog Archive folder which I keep in my extra Hard Drive, because I have so many little videos and photos now which were taking up so much space :)

The Garden Faerie said...

I love bats! We have big brown and little brown bats in my area.

Might I sheepishly ask what kind of frog is featured in your entry?

I've been using an online photo storage system (, but I'm running out of space and I'm too cheap to pay for more storage. Love your idea of an external hard drive--that hadn't even crossed my mind, though it really should have. That would be great for backup, too!

Thanks! Monica

A wildlife gardener said...

Welcome back, Garden Faerie. Great to have your company again.

We have pipistrelle bats which either live in our barn or in neighbouring mature deciduous trees...either way, they keep their habitats secret, which keeps them safe from man and his wily ways. In the summer they circle our house and swoop silently down to catch midges and insects which breed in our ponds :)

In our garden we have the so-called Common frog, Rana temporaria, which, sadly, is becoming a bit of a misnomer as they are becoming scarcer every year due to many farmers removing hedges and draining their land, emptying ditches etc.

When we moved here 17 years ago, there was an enormous artesian well in the field behind us, where we often watched the farmer's cows drinking; mute swans swimming and was a breeding ground for all the local frogs, toads and newts.

Over the years the farmer has been the beneficiary of many EEC grants (and the like) to help pay for copius amounts of draining materials. Only, very occasionally do we see any surface-water lying there now.

To counteract this, I like to think I'm doing my bit in my little if I came here in the nick of time :)

Iowa Gardening Woman said...

Wow, what great photos, thanks for sharing, I an almost here the chorus!

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
A wildlife gardener said...

Welcome back, Iowa gardening woman. Long time no see :) It certainly rang in my ears while I was filming :)

Blackswamp_Girl said...

How FUN!!!! They put on quite the performance for you, Wildlife Gardener! :)

A wildlife gardener said...

How lovely to have your company again, Blackswamp_Girl :) The froggies certainly did :)

Anonymous said...

I've only once spotted a frog in one of our ponds up here. They are very shy. I am amazed at your pictures! Do they allow you to come close, or are these all with a zoom lens? I love listening to the frogs and wish we had many more here.

I enjoyed the dance too! lol