Why Our Frogs Are Giving Us the Cold Shoulder
Say spring and folks immediately think of groundhogs or robins but in fact, one of the most dependable — and musical — harbingers of spring is the frog. Even though spring technically began on March 20, conditions have been less than appealing to our peepers and wood frogs, so we’re still waiting to enjoy one of Nature’s grandest overtures.
Frogs that live in colder climates survive by hibernating, a pretty amazing process. Some frogs hibernate under water and get their oxygen from the water through their skin. Some dig holes or find cracks in logs or rock areas. Their heart rates and breathing slow, their body temperatures reach close to the outside temperature. Wood frogs not only can freeze their entire bodies, but can stop their hearts for days and weeks at a time.
Once the soil thaws and temperatures creep above 50 – look out! The stage is set for love! The frogs emerge from their winter slumbers, the males begin their raucous serenade and the swales at The Ridges fill with peeping, whirring, chirping and … well … romance.
So while we agree that groundhogs are cute, furry fellows, we’ll wait until the lusty little amphibians that populate the Sanctuary give us the signal before unpacking our sandals!