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BunnyMaz
08-31-2011, 08:09 PM
This is really rather delightful.

I have a tiny garden - TINY - and all concreted over, so I've never held out much hope of being able to enjoy sheltering beasties like hedgepigs, and since I have no pond or permanent water source in the garden I assumed the same would be true for everything else, too.

BUUUT I do have a lot of jumbled tat - a messy pile of unused plant pots wedged between a wall and a mini greenhouse, weeds growing up between my tightly crammed herb planters where soil has built up in the crevasses, and loads of bricks, half-bricks and tiles stacked about to lift some pots higher than others, and apparently some local froggies have decided this makes my garden worth exploring!

Now, there is a better habitat right up against my garden - the neighbours have no pond, but they do have lots of well-established hedges and shrubs, and there's no fence dividing our gardens. So this got me thinking; could I build effective, worthwhile overwintering shelters for the frogs in my space? Anyone know what sort of shelter frogs prefer? Any easy DIY shelters that can be made with half-bricks and scrap wood?

BardSkye
09-02-2011, 06:32 AM
Maybe someone over in the "Writing about animals" thread would know what froggies prefer for their condos.

Sorry, I have no idea.

Shakesbear
09-02-2011, 11:36 AM
See here: http://www.froglife.org/advice/FAQs/frogs_toads/winter.htm

I am SO envious! I love froggies and toads. I love next door to the back of beyond and have a large garden - but no frogs. I suppose that if there were frogs the sparrow hawk would eat them!

BunnyMaz
09-02-2011, 11:55 AM
See here: http://www.froglife.org/advice/FAQs/frogs_toads/winter.htm

I am SO envious! I love froggies and toads. I love next door to the back of beyond and have a large garden - but no frogs. I suppose that if there were frogs the sparrow hawk would eat them!

Awesome! Thank you.

Yeah, I'm pretty chuffed. The mister reckons they won't stay, but I'm sure if I make the garden more appealing they'll at least become more regular visitors.

Rise2theTop
09-02-2011, 01:35 PM
http://www.cutestpage.com/pictures/Relaxing_Frog.jpg

I love froggies!!

jamiehall
09-02-2011, 10:52 PM
I suppose there must be some dark, moist places for them to crawl under that makes them feel comfortable, or at least that's what seems to attract toads. Frogs I suppose are more water-oriented but maybe the kind you've got don't need actual water unless they're laying eggs?

I found these links:

http://kerryg.hubpages.com/hub/Attracting-Frogs-and-Toads-To-Your-Garden

http://www.nwf.org/Get-Outside/Outdoor-Activities/Garden-for-Wildlife/Gardening-Tips/How-to-Attract-Frogs-Toads-and-Other-Amphibians.aspx

http://exoticpets.about.com/od/frogsandtoads/qt/frogsponds.htm

http://birdsandbloomsblog.com/2011/06/02/attract-toads-to-your-backyard/

DaveKuzminski
09-28-2011, 08:33 PM
I live in Virginia and have three artificial ponds in the back yard. My wife want to put in some water plants for a water garden. I insisted that we also put in some mosquito fish to avoid making mosquito haven. The frogs and toads and skinks came naturally on their own after the first year. They tend to breed in the early spring. We then have tadpoles for a month or so up to two years. Different types have different rates of changing. The toads prefer to scatter out over the yard to find nooks and crannies to hide in. The frogs tend to hang out beside the artificial ponds and go hunting in the grass in the evening for more bugs.

The ponds as we call them are about the size of kiddie pools and require almost no upkeep though I do keep them aerated with immersible pumps. Occasionally, I find a dead tadpole that got sucked into one, but many more survive and thrive to product a steady stream of new frogs. I've noticed at least five kinds of different frogs emerge from that pond. I usually don't see the toads because they're quick to leave. They generally get out by climbing on the water plants to hop out. Getting in is no problem for any of them.

The skinks (lizards) tend to hide in the cracks in the bordering landscape timbers and bricks. Aside from some sumo wrestling matches between the frogs of one species wanting complete control over one pond, they tend to get along together. And the tadpoles tend to winter over if they develop late in the year. A few later turn up frozen to death, but the majority survive to the next summer.

Friendly Frog
09-30-2011, 03:50 PM
BUUUT I do have a lot of jumbled tat - a messy pile of unused plant pots wedged between a wall and a mini greenhouse, weeds growing up between my tightly crammed herb planters where soil has built up in the crevasses, and loads of bricks, half-bricks and tiles stacked about to lift some pots higher than others, and apparently some local froggies have decided this makes my garden worth exploring!Sounds like toad and frog heaven.

In our garden, although we have lots of plants and places where we don't clear the leaflitter, especially the toads seem to prefer the small brickpile in the back of the garden to shelter under. I can find several there at once. I assume they like it best because it's shaded, damp and very quiet.

So I don't think you actually need to built specific frog houses, it sounds like you've got already some provided.

Without a permanent watersource, I don't think they will establish a resident population in your garden, they need ponds for breeding. But I'm pretty positive you can provide shelter for neighbouring amphibians even if they go elsewhere to breed.

My grandfather's garden is also concreted up, and his tiny pond has lots of fish. But he does get several frogs in his garden all year round, we suspect they come from two houses further, there's a large pond there. (I'm slightly jealous, it took us years to get the frogs established in our garden. Toads and newts came easy, but the frogs are darn picky.)

SPMiller
10-01-2011, 10:29 PM
I've found toads that have burrowed into the loose soil of my garden. Usually, this is while I'm turning over that soil for a planting... and I don't think I've actually killed any of them yet. They tend to be 10-20 cm down.

jennontheisland
10-02-2011, 08:09 PM
If you're concreted over you could always just fill a kiddie pool with water and add a pump. Instant pond, just add lilypads. Then a few flower pots around it for shade and shelter... voila! tadpoles!

Stlight
12-26-2011, 10:28 PM
Jenn's right. For several years dozens of tree frogs were happy to play, court and use our wading pools as their honeymoon and nursery grounds. We had hundreds of tadpoles in the pools. The pools were for the dog so there were no pumps or lillies, just fallen leaves. You might add an overturned clay flower pot for sunning purposes.

The vet said they were tree frogs and the dog shouldn't eat them. That was no problem, they horrified her and she wouldn't go near them.

Two years ago one last frog came to spend the summer in one pool. I made her a 'house' from a flower pot and a ramp to get to it and out of the pool. She had another over turned pool for really hot days. She died in late August that year.

The dog can once again play in all her wading pools instead of just one. But I miss the frogs and their songs.

I think someone 'fixed' the little marsh in his backyard a few houses down. We can't have a marsh. When it rains a river runs through our yard throwing the wading pools against the fence and once knocking the fence on its side. (chain link)

Fenika
12-26-2011, 10:33 PM
I approve of this post :)

I had a toad living in my Potted garden last year. I have tons of toads on my new property and I left them some water but didn't give them any housing, which I now regret. We have plenty of rocks and brush and woods, so I'm sure they found good spots.

I need to figure out how to naturally discourage slugs...

Fenika
12-26-2011, 10:38 PM
Dang, now I really want to ask the neighbor if they'll sell the 200 gallon pond tub sitting by their house... As if I need more projects...

frimble3
12-27-2011, 11:24 AM
Dang, now I really want to ask the neighbor if they'll sell the 200 gallon pond tub sitting by their house... As if I need more projects...
It's just sitting there? They're not using it, or planning to? GO FOR IT! Make an offer. Check that it's water-tight, then make an offer.
What are the dimensions? How deep?
I have a little (28"by28") above-ground 'pebble-pond', and it's been a total joy. Essentially a shallow tub with a lid, allowing a small pump to push water into a two-inch deep pool on top. (The idea is to fill the pool with rocks, etc, so the water flows over/through the rocks, and back down for recirculating) It's not suitable for frog recreation, but makes a wonderful bird-bath and squirrel and cat waterer. Always something happening. And 200 gallons would give you a lot of water-space to work with - depending on dimensions.
GETITGETITGETIT!

Fenika
12-27-2011, 12:37 PM
It's massive. It's at least 3 ft deep. Two people could have a bath in it with a little cozy-ing.

Money and time are a little tight right now. I have no idea if it's waterproof...

:/

Shadowflame
12-27-2011, 09:59 PM
I had a toad burrow into my flower garden and live there for several years. :D The kids had the best time grabbing little bugs ( large ants and pillbugs) and tossing them near his burrow. He got quite fat and kept the slugs under control. I'd love to have a little pond in the back yard. *looks at fiance* Maybe when we actually own a place. ;)

frimble3
12-28-2011, 01:53 AM
Another point: 3 feet deep and big enough for 2 people? Nice for the frogs and fish and waterlilies, but an awfully big hole to have to dig.

Fenika
12-28-2011, 01:57 AM
I know, right? Or I would have asked if they'd sell it already. Even if I dig partly and then pile up the dirt around what's sticking up, that's crazy.

*sigh* And none of the little ponds at Lowes have gone on sale...

But if toads eat slugs I am going to do everything in my power to help them. I already don't use chemicals and ask my neighbors to warn me first if they would please...

frimble3
12-28-2011, 02:30 AM
Have you tried copper as a barrier? Apparently something in the oxidizing copper puts the slugs right off oozing over it. My dad had some success with it. Also with spraying them with a salt/vinegar solution, but that pretty much requires going out frequently, spotting them, and spraying. Ideal for a retiree or small child, not so much if you want to get anything else done.
If your vegetables/flowers are in a clearly defined bed, you might want to put a copper strip around it. Dad got a deal on some kind of copper flashing and figured that scrap copper pipe would work, if you could keep in from being covered in dirt.

Fenika
12-28-2011, 03:03 AM
The area of my yard that has a slug problem (luckily not my veggie garden, though there were a few odd balls there) is too large and half-wooded, so a barrier won't really work. I'm not one to panic over a few slugs (they are filling a niche) but would like to keep their population under control next year. Plus, if I do it naturally, the neighbors are less likely to be invaded and thus less likely to put out slug bait, that will run off onto my yard. x.x

But I'll keep that info in mind if my garden or a certain area would benefit from a barrier :) Cheers.