Tag Archives: amphibians

Fantastic Frogs

It’s that time of year again when ponds boil with amorous amphibians, all seeking to find a mate and spawn.

The pond at the Northumberland Wildlife Trust’s tiny St Nicholas Park reserve must be one of the best places in the north east to witness the spectacle of frogs mating and they have finally arrived to begin their bacchanalian ritual.

It’s been pretty cold of late but the recent mild spell saw frogs begin to converge on the pond, in expectation of the start of a new breeding cycle.

As is typical, the males have arrived first to begin their croaking courtship ritual and these can be told by their pale throats and duller grey coloration.

There are some females though too and these are browner and have the typical mottled colours we associate with our common frogs.

Only a few had produced spawn at the beginning of last week but there is still plenty of time. What an incredible wildlife spectacle to witness at close hand!

Amphibian embrace

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It’s that time of year again…Common Frogs in amplexus in ponds across the nation…and finally now in Newcastle.

I have been checking the ponds at the Wildlife Trust reserve in Gosforth almost daily for the last couple of weeks but it has been a little on the chilly side until last week, when we had a few (almost) frost-free nights.

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And then, there they all were; hundreds and hundreds of frogs writhing around and making an unbelievable noise.

What a fantastic natural spectacle! I look forward to seeing this each spring and once again, this tiny reserve thoroughly delivers.

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Common Toad

Common Toad - bufo bufo

I almost stepped on this Common Toad on the path by St Mary’s wetland on Saturday. On its to way to breed in the pond but out in broad daylight, rather than moving under cover of darkness.

Common Toad - bufo bufo

Common Toad - bufo bufo

Common Toad - bufo bufo

Common Toad - bufo bufo

What a handsome creature! I especially like its orange eyes and the texture of its skin. It’s been a while since I have seen a Toad so it was nice to see this one. I am sure there will be quite a few more out and about on their way to breed now that it is spring – I can’t wait!