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View Diary: The Daily Bucket, pond critters (111 comments)

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  •  I once rented a backhoe (11+ / 0-)

    to take out a bunch of unattractive bushes.  My wife left that morning, and before she got home to stop me, I'd taken out all the bushes and then dug a 10 x 12 pond, two feet deep.  

    I put in a 4 x 10 x 3 feet deep pond, and a  3 x 3 x1 fishless pond later.

    I planted them mainly with oregon (psuedo) irises, rushes, native lilies, and cattails. I got the plants from a pond at the golf course where I work part time.

    I put in a few gold fish and they breed. A heron or two comes by and thins them out every week or so.

    I'm proudest of my native frogs that have moved in.  Oregon has tiny tree frogs that are very vocal.  They also roam around the whole yard so I'm afraid to spray anywhere.  I'll often find them in the strawberries, hopefully eating slugs.

    The first time I saw a tree frog in the front yard it was so small I thought it was a grasshopper. Sometimes I see their tadpoles in the ponds.  

     This time of year I'll watch for the boy frogs luring in the girl frogs with their singing.  The frogs are so small as they sit on top of the water, the only thing I see is the bellows of their throat enlarging and shrinking as they croak.  Then from the corner of my eye I'll see the girl frog slowly approaching in silence, since the girl frogs don't croak.

    Non native bullfrogs are so aggressive they've driven most native frogs out of their habitat.

    Monster bullfrogs rule at the golf course where I work.  
    I've brained a few with a sand wedge (short, wristy swing) and brought the bullfrogs home to eat.  My wife and kid ran screaming from the house and I ate alone those nights.

     Herons, ospreys, eagles, hawks, coyotes, ducks, geese, red wing blackbirds, killdeer, and robins also frequent the golf course ponds.  There used to be lots of salamanders but they are disappearing.  I tried to move some salamanders into my home pond but they didn't take.

    Raccoons and skunks come visiting my yard ponds at night.  I've set out "brushed" layers of sand, come back the next morning, and seen many sets of footprints.  I've seen a tiny garter snake under the lamb's ear, too.

    In my deeper pond, I constructed a shelf so plants could sit in a foot of water.  The heron and likely the raccoon have knocked all of the plants off of those shelves, and the plants are now in 4 feet of water.  

    Orly, it isn't evidence just because you downloaded it from the internet.

    by 6412093 on Sun Mar 17, 2013 at 02:21:46 PM PDT

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