after dark

This is the first of what will probably be a small barrage of posts on nature sightings from the past few days. It seems that I’m seeing a lot right at the moment, so I’ll be trying to do some catch-up on photos and notes.

At the end of June, I wrote a piece about the Gray Tree frogs that are frequent evening visitors around our house. They’ve been quite conspicuous in recent weeks. During the hot, dry weather that we’ve had since returning home from Nova Scotia, there’s a frog that has taken to sitting in the Wild Cucumber vines that cloak the screens of our sun porch. Normally fairly quiet, the frog breaks into rapturous chattering trills at the slightest rainshower and keeps at it until the cloudburst ends.

I’ve also been finding small tree frogs basking on Milkweed leaves during the afternoon, especially since the weather has cooled down a little (see below photo). Their skin closely matches the hue of the leaves, so they go unnoticed unless you happen to be watching for them.

As mentioned in my earlier post, after dark, Gray Tree frogs often wander about the windows of our house while searching for moths attracted by the indoor lights. Last night, Don noticed one clinging to the living room window, its legs splayed out and toe pads adhering to the glass. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the camera out quickly enough, so I just captured the tamer image of the frog resting on the outer window sill, as shot from indoors looking out. Seeing the frog on the window reminded me of an incident a few years ago. We had two women visiting from Amsterdam, and one evening while I was cleaning up the dishes and they were sitting in the living room, the women began to shriek in obvious terror. Unable to imagine what could have provoked such an outburst, I dropped everything and rushed into the room. I found the women screaming and pointing at this pallid “thing” that was stretched like a ghostly Gollum creature across the outer side of the window. Of course, I laughed as soon as I saw the frightening apparition as it was just one of the resident tree frogs pursuing moths across the window. I suppose such sights aren’t all that common in Amsterdam.

In any case, as I’ve mentioned before, these frogs are common visitors around the house. Most evenings, if I step outside for a few minutes to photograph moths around the porch lamp, a tree frog will soon appear to take advantage of the situation. I’ve even had them hop onto my head or shoulder while I’m standing close to the lamp in the middle of shooting photos. I seem to present a good vantage point from which to leap at the wall to capture prey. It’s great to hear and see them around the house and gardens as it won’t be all that long until they begin to seek their winter refuges. *sigh*

Tags: ,

  • Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.
  • Trackback URI:
  • Comments RSS 2.0

5 Responses to “after dark”

  1. robin andrea Says:

    They are such pretty little creatures. We hear our tree frogs in the spring when they are happily procreating in our little pond. We love their songs and are always so glad when they burst into chorus. They stay fairly hidden from us, but when we do see them they are surprisingly small. We’ve never had them jump on us. That does sound like fun though!

    I have read over the years that climate change has been particularly bad for amphibians, and they risk extinction. What a tragedy.

  2. burning silo Says:

    Robin – Yes. I’m concerned about the climate change impact on amphibians too. There needs to be a lot more effort put into trying to find a way to lessen the impact on these creatures.

  3. romunov Says:

    “I suppose such sights aren’t all that common in Amsterdam.”

    What have they been smoking? :D

  4. burning silo Says:

    romunov – Yes, well, one has to wonder about that! (-:

  5. Randa Says:

    I just LOVE frogs. I grinned with delight when I saw these pictures. Thank you for your continuously fascinating posts, Bev. I am so glad I found you!