Romancing Toads

Midnight at the oasis….

So goes the 1973 song, penned by David Nichtern and crooned by Maria Muldaur, it should be the anthem of the ardent toads currently inhabiting in my pond.IMGP7664.new

As they’re lookin’ for love, they’re also VERY noisy.  Each spring I anticipate and dread their transformation of the pond into an aquatic amphibian love-nest.  No neighbor has ever complained about the clamorous, amorous songs and in fact, at least two neighbors have commented that they enjoy the toads’ nocturnal chorus and calls.  But the toads are LOUD.

This guy,

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…flirted with The Husband. Seriously, the toad actually flirted with my husband. Right in front of me!  He hopped over to the Man-of-the-House, delivered his song–complete with inflated throat, which is the method of delivery, and commenced serenading My Beloved.

I’m not quite sure what my response should be.  One of jealousy?  Or maybe of amusement, given our many years together?  Maybe I should just ignore it–flirtation is fun and usually harmless.  After all, The Husband is cute.  But is he attractive to a toad?

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Apparently.

Toad crush.

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It’s springtime in the pond.

 

34 thoughts on “Romancing Toads

  1. What a great photo. Every time I go near my tank pond the toad hops into the water. There was spawn in there but I think it was damaged the night of the hail storm when a piece of hail hit the fountain and it now started spewing water over the edge. They may have dried out. Probably just as well as one is noisy enough.

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    • Thanks, Jenny. These guys (mostly guys) really are friendly. They’ll hop into the pond, but they swim up to us and as I explained, aren’t timid about approaching us on land. You’re right though–one is plenty noisy enough.

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  2. Great photos. What fun. We don’ t have these sort of noisy toads. We certainly don’ t have flirtatious ones. But I don’ t think he was flirting. I think he was challenging your husband. Saying ‘Beat this, if you can! ‘

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  3. When I see anoles puffing up their throats to me, I take it as flirting. Why wouldn’t they want to flirt? And that affection is quite mutual.

    But I think Chloris makes a valid point. I think that toad was showing off for YOU, menacing your escort as a way to prove he “can take good care of you, darlin’, just hop on over this way… “.

    We had (have?) a toad living under an old A/C pad that was recently broken up and hauled off. He has plenty of other rocks around to cozy up to and a rain barrel as well but no body of water to rule over currently. I’m hoping to change all that soon!

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    • Is there a pond in your garden’s future?? Nice! You won’t regret it. I resisted building a pond for a long time, thinking that it would be too much work. But, in fact, it’s a low maintenance feature: there’s one day of major clean-out in the early spring, separation of the plants, and occaisional cleaning of the filters–the process of which also feeds some of my roses. And that’s it!! The sound of water, the gorgeous lilies, pickerel rush and ruby red-runner plants–all make the pond so worth-while.

      I like thought that the the toad was trying to impress me! Either that’s really sad, or, maybe I should have my nails done. (As if…). 🙂

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  4. Oh toads are flirts aren’t they….my pond never seems to daw the toads as far as I can see…but we have different waves of frogs and quite loud from peepers to Northern Leopard to Green now and their incessant barking and also tree frogs now too. I also wait for complaints from neighbors but none have come.

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    • The frogs and toads do like their water habitats. I’m glad your neighbors like the sounds of nature–so much better than traffic, garbage dumptrucks, and police sirens.

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      • Yep, we had a huge toad in the baby pool two years ago. My daughter picked it up, and it was so big, she needed both hands. Sometimes they sit on my front porch and croak when it rains. I guess, when it down pours, they look for shelter. But your photos made my day! I love toads. They are so cool! 😀

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  5. I dearly wish I would acquire a resident garden toad but a combination of no nearby water plus patrolling by feral neighborhood cats probably means it will never happen. However, I do have a terracotta “toad house” (very simple and tasteful, no Victorian gingerbread or trendy post-modern accoutrements, LOL) just on the off chance that a passing one might choose to pass the time of day (or night). 🙂

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    • Usually, the toads in my gardens just hang out under the overgrown plants, but toad houses are nice. My cats are interested in the toads, but don’t do more than stick a lazy paw out to touch the toads’ pebbly skin–and that’s fine with me. The neighborhood Screech Owls on the other hand, love my toads, so the toad population waxes and wanes throughout the season.

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      • Sadly, there are no owls here…. which should mean that it would be a toad Club Med! I’m sure the problem is the lack of any nearby body of water (other than the ubiqitous inground swimming pools in most backyards, open from Memorial Day to late September, that is).

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  6. Brilliant! I love these photos. And toads. Listening to the sound of frogs and toads at night is one of the great pleasures of life. I just looked up the lyrics to Midnight at the Oasis. Beautiful.

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    • I love the sounds too, Debra. It’s (one) of the sounds of spring. I was 13 when Midnight at the Oasis was a big hit for Maria Muldaur. Turns out, she’s had a long career as a blues singer. I always liked her voice.

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      • I checked Youtube and three notes in I realized I knew this song. I heard it as a kid too but somehow never heard/appreciated the lyrics.

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      • One sees/hears things differently as an adult than as a child/teen. It’s a fun song and as I mentioned, I always liked her voice and styling.

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    • You know, I didn’t ask if he was flattered at the attention. But I prefer the supposition that the toad was trying to impress me. 🙂

      I think they find all sorts of ways and places to do the baby tadpole thing–there seem to be plenty of them.

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