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VM

Tadpole rescue?

We have inherited a big pond full of fish in our 'new' house. Obviously last year all the frogspawn got eaten by the fish.

We have decided to make an additional small pond so we can have baby frogs in the garden. Today I saw the frogs all 'at it' and mounds of frogspawn. But we have not yet made the frog-friendly pond.

So I thought of rescuing the frogspawn and putting it in our redundant aquarium before it gets eaten. Have vague memories of collecting frogspawn when at school and keeping it in jars.

So, if I do this, how long do I have to get the pond made, before today's spawn turns into baby frogs?
Jamanda

30 t0 40 days plus 12 to 14 weeks according to the BBC
dpack

done frogpole and toadpole rescues

tank is fine with 3 inches of water ,put a brick under one end and earth/moss/bark segment above the water line,use a bubbler,

feed fish flakes ,daphnia and blood worms(from good pet suppliers) to the poles ,

when they reach a decent size (large pea with a tail )add a few drops of iodine (chemists first aid type is fine )to stimulate thyroxine production and get them to change into froglets/toadlets and they climb up the slope onto "land" .adding iodine reduces cannibalism and gives a greater number than most wild systems can for a given number of poles

feed up on fruit flies then baby stick insects until the froglets are about ten pence size .release in a suitable place at night to avoid bird predation til they distribute into the environment

putting 72 frogs in a box is well funny Laughing

i kept one toad til it was full grown but that takes a bit of effort re feeding etc

it sounds difficult but it aint if you follow the method Wink
dpack

ps a new pond is unlikely to have enough food for the poles hence my tank suggestion
VM

Thank you for all that! Will give it a go.

Bit sentimental but I like frogs and don't like fish so it makes me annoyed to see the fish eating all the spawn.

For myself I wouldn't have fish, but this large and thriving goldfish colony has been in the pond for at least ten years before we got here, and partner likes them, so guess they are staying.
dpack

if you go for the pond option or outside tank the ability to mesh the top and thickish marginal vegetation will reduce predation

dragonfly nymphs can be a problem in outdoor frog ponds but if you stick to floating plants rather than reeds etc it should be ok
Nell Merionwen

Would kelp work for iodine content?
incidentally I misread this title as "tadpole racing". Seems that would be bit like nailing jelly to a wall.
dpack

kelp might have too high a salt content and could ferment but well washed and them burned to ash might work if you could work out dosage

with medical iodine solution 2 drops per gallon done twice a week apart seems to work in a tank , the second dose gets the stragglers

ps jamjars usually kill em all at quite an early stage via oxygen deprivation,without a bubbler a big surface area per egg is required and keeping the temp about 12 to 15 c helps with o2 solubilityand growth rate .a sunny windowsill is a bad place to put em .

elodia canadanasis is a good plant to oxgenate frog ponds

for fruit flies a mix of a mashed banana with half a multivit/mineral tablet and half a teaspoon o fthe type nappy rash cream that has nipogen in the ingredients to prevent fungi is a good media ,takes about 10 days at room temp for the egg /larvae/fly cycle to establish so make them at weekly intervals .in most places there will be enough fruit flies to use wild attracted stock as they cant resist a fermenting nana

if keeping the froglets until late in the year fishing maggots will provide flies during the summer but beware the amityville horror
Nick

Could you put them in the pond with the fish, but in a mesh bucket type thing? It's how you raise fry in a tank, so they get to share the nutrients, benefit from the larger water capacity, which is healthier, and keeps the fish away.Use something like a wire waste paper basket in the leg of a pair of tights.
dpack

the basket thing might work but as poles are nearly all mouth and gut they eat things nearly as big as themselves so if the mesh would keep them in it would keep their food out and cause cannibalism

tights for instance would be far too fine mesh to let food in ,

if the poles were fed it is an option worth trying with a few but i recon that a full clump would very quickly become a few .they have a very strong instinct to eat their siblings if food is the limiting factor on growth.it sort of makes sense as a survival mechanism but to raise maximum froglets feeding is needed in anything but a low stock density in a food rich pond

in the wild most are eaten by other poles rather than predators which concentrates the available food into the fittest poles and also collects the available iodine for thyroxine production to trigger metamorphosis

the prime control on the egg to frog ratio is food supply followed by iodine availability

ps separate toad and frog at the egg stage cos the first born will eat the hindmost if the toads hatch first ,toads are fewer and bigger and in strings not clumps like frogs as spawn
dpack

froggy advice

these folk seem to be fairly good at explaining basics of all things damp and hoppy
Mistress Rose

Look out for newts too. They rather like frog poles, but not toad poles.
dpack

i think the uk toads are unpleasant/toxic to eat from a very early stage where as froggies are delicious ,poison arrow frogs etc are the exceptions with frogs

i was asked if i would try breeding p a frogs by the centre for life studies/amphibian dept at london zoo years ago and declined cos of the habitat control issues(create and maintaining aquatic and terrestial and live tree in one terrarium is not easy) , the potential for escapees getting on telly and that handling them is rather dodgy even with gloves etc Laughing manytree frogs are tricky but they dont kill you like the p a species if you are a bit careless Laughing

ps try not to handle any frogs/toads ungloved as they can catch things from you and vice versa ,tis a small risk to you but can be a big riask for them.if they are in the road or whatever just grab em but as a matter of froggy wrangling disposable gloves etc are sensible .

pps a tame toad will sit your mouth with it's head poking out for a bit without releasing toxins but dont Laughing Laughing Laughing
VM

Arrgh, this is sort of helpful but is beginning to seem more complicated than I feel I can get my head round. I will try and look it a bit at a time!

At the moment the spawn, which is two days old, is out of the pond and in an old, biggish aquarium that we used to have goldfish in a long, long time ago. I have put some weed from the pond in with it and could get a bubbler but don't have one at the moment.

Aquarium is currently in the garage, by a window, not in direct sun.

Obviously at this stage they are dots, not moving.

I don't think we have anything suitable which we could use to try and keep them in the pond but separate from the fish.

Last year's spawn disappeared from the pond long before it hatched - I assumed it was the fish what ate it, just because there are so ***ing many of them - but perhaps it was something else.

How long before they turn from dots to poles and start eating each other, or dying??

This is definitely frog, not toadspawn. We had toadspawn in a previous pond back in Manchester - got very excited but frog poles hatched first and I watched them eat the toadspawn all up.

Later, when the garden was full of tiny froglets, I discovered that my lurchers were munching them up like crisps or peanuts. Shocked
VM

And no, I won't do that thing you said with a toad.

Shocked Shocked Shocked Shocked
dpack

egg to pole is temp dependant and i suspect oxygen dependent and maybe other things such as the ma n pa

anything from under a week to 3 is possible ,if very cold they can stay in the gel for months under ice and still hatch, once the first few are out you need to feed em or they will eat the others

a good temp of about 12 to 15 degrees it should be around ten days

a cheap bubbler will help a lot ,

they dont need the sloped earth thing till they start to grow legs etc but getting it ready saves unexpected drownings if they change suddenly and give it a chance to establish a constant environment
Jamanda

Our dog will not drink from a bowl. He will only drink from the pond. I'm pretty sure he must be slurping up frog-spawn at the moment, though the frogs have had the sense to mostly lay in the opposite corner from where he drinks.
dpack

are you sure ?maybe he has slurped the ones at his end Laughing
VM

Thank you again. Nothing happening yet to the dots. Perhaps I have killed them already! Confused
dpack

probably not they are quite robust in the jelly and if dead you would know by the foul smell and "soupy"look to the water
VM

Yes I think I have seen / smelled that before. They look much as they did when I took them out of the water. Hope Mummy and Daddy Frog are not missing them.
VM

Frogspawns are little comma shapes now, in their jelly, instead of just dots.

My mum says it is a heron that eats the frogspawn from her pond. It only visits her garden this time of year (she has no fish for it to eat) and gulps up the spawn which hangs down in strings from the heron's beak, like seaweed or spaghetti.
VM

Frogspawns are little comma shapes now, in their jelly, instead of just dots.

My mum says it is a heron that eats the frogspawn from her pond. It only visits her garden this time of year (she has no fish for it to eat) and gulps up the spawn which hangs down in strings from the heron's beak, like seaweed or spaghetti.
dpack

ace ,they are growing and evolving .

as soon as the first few break loose of the jelly they need feeding so tis time to source daphnia/bloodworms and fine flake fish food

re heron .net the pond
Mistress Rose

Have noticed we have frogspawn now. Rather late, but nice to have it as we missed several years because of red leg. Had some last year, but thought they weren't going to spawn this year, so rather pleased.
evie2

Our dogs found 2 frogs in their outside water bowl Shocked they were not happy Laughing
Jamanda

The frogs or the dogs?
Mistress Rose

That's what I was going to ask. Laughing
Annette H

Every year I am hopeful that we will have frogspawn but it never appears!. We have a good sized garden pond, no fish, but there are newts. We also have a large wildlife pool in the field, again, no spawn . Crying or Very sad

Over the years we have imported buckets of spawn and tadpoles from threatened ponds but all to no avail. My Brother in Law has a small pond in a town garden that is heaving with frogs at the moment. I have never been able to work out what we are doing wrong. We do see the occasional frog around the place.

We also have no hedgehogs but I assume that's due to the many badgers here. I wonder whether the badgers are controlling the frogs too Confused
VM

Lucky you, Annette, having newts! I long for newts. Partner saw one in our pond last summer, but I have never seen one for real. I have an idea that frogs and newts don't mix in the same pond, but no idea where I got that from.

My mum has two ponds in her Cambridgeshire (chalky) garden and has never had frogs or spawn, though has seen the occasional toad.Presumably they thrive more in some environments than others. We used to have loads of frogs in our city (Manchester) garden ponds - I had a feeling that the combination of old walls and densely planted borders made for a frog-friendly environment.

This has reminded me to go and see the tadpoles in the aquarium now in case I need to feed them. One or two seemed to be dead on the floor of the tank yesterday, so perhaps something is wrong and there is going to be mass death.... Sad
dpack

dont worry about one or two failure to hatch poles Wink
Mistress Rose

We acquired newts when they found our brand new garden pond on their migration to their original one and set up home with us instead. We have had frogs, toads and newts in the same pond at odd times, and it is on chalk VM.

We have plenty of cover round the pond where amphibians can hide and get to the pond without being spotted by birds or other predators. Could that by your problem with your pond Annette?
Annette H

Lots of cover on the main pool. The garden pond also has lots of hidey holes and sandstone block edging on one side with lots of gaps. The newts have really thrived especially since we lost the goldfish after the big freeze a couple of years ago. There is grass to the pool edges too. To me it looks like a froggy des res but obviously not Confused

The odd thing is, that 20 years ago when the ponds were dug we did have spawn even though we had fish too. The fish created lots of fry and kept a beautiful kingfisher well fed for ages. Herons are pretty rare here now with the opening of a local fishery Evil or Very Mad

The newts by the way are the ordinary little ones not the great crested.
Mistress Rose

We have the common newt too. That is why great crested newts are rare; most people don't have them. Very Happy
VM

They are long with tails but still in the jelly now. Wriggling a bit more - some of them anyway.

I am poised to feed them when do break free of jelly as dpack said. However pet shop in village closed so not been able to get flake food. Was going to mash / crumble up pellet food I have for the pond fish.
dpack

mashed fine and a little at a time should be ok ,try to give enough to feed them with only a little left at the end of each feed to avoid fouling the water

daphnia and bloodworms stay fresh as they are live food but they can be pricey in specialist aquarium shops

when they get a bit bigger minced liver is popular as are minced worms

well done so far
Annette H

Mincing worms Surprised Laughing
dpack

mincing worms would be quite a stage act Laughing
VM

Can get liver from butcher down the road and mince it but don't think I can bring myself to mince worms. I am in favour of worms. If any fall out of the lid of the compost bin I pick them up and put them back inside.

Quite a few tadpoles swimming around now but there also seem to be a lot of dead ones at the bottom. And don't think fish food a great success so far - it has settled on the bottom. There is some weed in with them which they may be eating. Also quite a lot of jelly still with some poles just round dots still inside it.
Rob R

Our dogs found 2 frogs in their outside water bowl Shocked they were not happy Laughing


I went round to a farm last year that had frogs on the back lawn. I'd laid my wellies down as there was a chance of rain and as I put it back on I felt something inside the welly and instinctively pulled my foot back out, ejecting a frog with it. That could have been messy.

Re: spawn, we don't normally see it in the pond as we have rather a lot of newts but last year we dug a small scrape in coppice corner, behind the reedbed, and the frog's have set up a breeding colony. The Heron visits the pond regularly, and newts could easily find their way out of the pond or reedbed but they're hanging on in there.

We regularly find newts in the drains or swimming in the foundations, here's one little guy from a few years ago;

Mistress Rose

We found a newt on the patio behind the house a couple of weeks ago. As we were working there, husband took him nearer the pond and out of the way.
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