Morphing Frogs

Top Photo: Bullfrogs at edge of wetlands. The numerous bullfrogs that are currently morphing from tadpole to frog in our wetlands were eggs last summer. The eggs hatched approximately five days from deposition. Nine months to perhaps a year later they’re transitioning from tadpole to frog. That may seem a long time, but consider the bullfrog in more northern climates. A bullfrog tadpole hatched in a Massachusetts pond may take three years to become a frog. These frogs are approximatelyRead more

Pickerel Frogs

By the time you read this, it will be spring, meteorological spring. Spring to me actually begins in February. The days continue to get longer, red maple and elm flowers pop, and frogs, peepers, chorus and pickerel frogs, are all calling. I know there may indeed be some cold days between now and April, but it won’t last long, a few days at most. Winter’s done. If you’ve been down into our wetlands in the last week and a halfRead more

Some Serendipitous Sightings

Top Photo: Monarch butterfly caterpillar on butterflyweed. While searching for harvester caterpillars on alder in the Wetlands I came across an assassin bug on one of the leaves. The bug was just about 3/4 inches (the body) and mostly green with brown on the back. Assassin bugs typically station themselves at a location which is busy with insects to wait and pounce on prey. They poke the prey with their long proboscis and suck them dry. An alder with aphidsRead more

Frogs Mature

If you’ve walked through the Wetlands lately you may have noticed amphibians floating on the water or perched on sticks, logs, or rocks in or next to the water. The amphibians are two inches or so from the tip of their noses to the end of their bodies. Some of them are trailing tails, vestiges of their days as tadpoles. Others have already absorbed their tails and appear as miniature adults. These amphibians are bullfrogs. They are, in fact, theRead more

Mini Frogs and Buzzy Birds

I began to notice freshly morphed Pickerel Frogs on the paths here at the Museum during the last week of May. On June 1st I saw three hopping across the path and reasoned that if I saw three out in the open there must be many more along the sides of the path in the grass. I was right. At the Secondary Viewing area for the Wetlands (between the Red Wolves and the Lemurs) I saw dozens of the littleRead more