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Frogs spawn

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Suzy View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Suzy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Apr 2019 at 9:54am
In an amateur fashion I've recorded/observed garden badgers, bats, birds, crab spiders, herps - including pond life. I've seen behaviour you won't read about in books, even going against what you can read in books. As you say Chubsta you never stop learning. There is nothing like observing really.
Going back to newts eating spawn...I fished a new clump out of my pond the other year to hand rear it and right in the midst of the clump was a palmate newt. 
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Liz Heard View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Liz Heard Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 2019 at 11:48pm
Quite a few frogs hanging about pond-side earlier (as usual).
Thought this was a striking individual with it's bold leg bands and almost blue-black tinge.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

                                                        
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lalchitri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Dec 2019 at 9:03pm
First time ever I have had overwintering tadpoles.
About 10-15 from clumps I hand reared in a container.
Only one has back legs, so they are some way off development yet.
Will be interesting to see how big they grow, as I heard overwinterers can grow quite large.
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lalchitri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2019 at 9:48am
I always keep a few clumps separate from the pond to develop in case of a disaster (like what happened last year when the pond lining split).
From those clumps this year 10-12 never developed into froglets this summer/autumn.
I have kept them indoors, away from the cold in a tub.
I guessed they would continue their development in spring when I could release them a year after they hatched.
However, three of them have reached the stage where they have all four limbs but with the tail still there.
Now, the question is should I release them into the pond if they complete their development considering the winter weather and the risk of the pond freezing over.
Or should I keep them indoors and if so how, as I've never kept developed frogs indoors (I release the tadpoles as soon as they develop)?
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Liz Heard View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Liz Heard Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Dec 2019 at 12:07pm
Hi Lalchitri

Your post overlaps with the 'Pond Life' thread in the Wildlife Gardening forum.

I've found overwintering tadpoles in the pond in the past too, although unlike you I didn't bring mine indoors.
I'll be very interested to hear how yours fare as contrary to my expectation that overwintering might confer some sort of advantage come spring, the majority (if not all) of the circa 15 individuals I observed survived the winter as large tadpoles but never made it to metamorphosis and perished.
Prior to winter, they were less developed than yours, most had rear limbs only. These ranged up to fully developed.
I followed their progress in spring, expecting them to rapidly complete the process and depart as things warmed up. Instead, I watched as the new season's spawn was laid, tadpoles hatched, progressed through the stages as normal and 'overtook' them.
The overwintered larvae never developed any further and sadly, most had limbs that became deformed, atrophied and lifeless.

I suspect overwintering frog tadpoles are common especially in deeper or colder ponds. It's just that they survive in low numbers, secrete themselves out of sight of their many enemies much of the time and therefore usually go undetected.
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chubsta View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote chubsta Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Dec 2019 at 1:05pm
I know very little about such things but it sounds to my layman's ears that there is some hormonal trigger that isn't kicking in which is preventing the metamorphosis, leaving the tadpole to remain in its 'juvenile' stage with no chance of maturing - there are plenty of similar human illnesses which of course can be treat with hormones, so it is very interesting to see that such things can also potentially happen in amphibians!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 Dec 2019 at 11:47am
I released the 3 late froglets into the pond today.
There are still 6 tadpoles with only hind legs.
The froglets didn’t appear very active/alert.
Also, I hope the change in temperature from the indoor tub to the outdoor pond doesn’t affect them.
Contrary to what you have observed Liz, I didn’t notice any atrophy/lack of further development of overwintering since the froglets were only tadpoles with hind legs about 10 days ago.

i




Edited by lalchitri - 21 Dec 2019 at 11:48am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Dec 2019 at 1:26pm
Two more of the last six tadpoles turned froglets.
These were laid in February, bought inside in October when they never developed, no change till late December when 6 out of 9 have suddenly decided to complete their development in the past week.



Edited by lalchitri - 28 Dec 2019 at 1:28pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Jan 2020 at 9:54am
Originally posted by chubsta chubsta wrote:

I know very little about such things but it sounds to my layman's ears that there is some hormonal trigger that isn't kicking in which is preventing the metamorphosis, leaving the tadpole to remain in its 'juvenile' stage with no chance of maturing - there are plenty of similar human illnesses which of course can be treat with hormones, so it is very interesting to see that such things can also potentially happen in amphibians!


I think there must be something in this hormonal trigger theory.
Prior to this dozen or so overwinterers the last froglet was in August.
The rest remained as tadpoles upto just before xmas.
Then the first one metamorphed and suddenly within about 10 days to 2 weeks the rest did as well.
So nothing for 4 months, then one goes and so do all the others in a short span of time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Suzy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 Jan 2020 at 12:44pm
Just been cutting the vegetation back round my smallest pond to allow the sunshine onto the water. When things had settled down (I netted out some duckweed and leaves too) I saw a large overwintering tadpole lying by the pondside in the water. It certainly had one set of legs, but it was hard to get a clear view. I know there are a few that have overwintered in there. Will be interesting to see if they have a spurt and fully develop like yours did.

Edited by Suzy - 10 Jan 2020 at 12:51pm
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