A few months ago the girls and I walked down the canal in our backyard to toss some moldy bread in the water – I hate throwing it out when I know that someone might enjoy it! We stood at the edge of the bank, tossed our bread in, and then noticed some wiggly little black tadpoles swimming among the grass.
So I did what any crazy mom would do – I went in the house, grabbed a large plastic food container and a ladle from my kitchen, climbed down to the water’s edge, and scooped up a bunch of the squirmy little guys.
The girls loved it. They sat at their pint-sized backyard table for a good 15 minutes just watching the tadpoles swim around in their new home – which was obviously more restrictive, but was also 100% predator-free. 🙂
The pollywog habitat sat on my kitchen counter for a few weeks, and we checked in on them every few days to see if their metamorphosis had begun. It wasn’t long before we noticed that a few of them had started sprouting arms and legs.
Their tails started shrinking away, and we placed a large rock in the center of the container for them to climb out on as they started developing lungs and becoming air-breathers.
These particular frogs are pretty teeny, and also pretty fragile. We did suffer some losses, and by the time we had to dispose of our third tadpole corpse we decided it was time to let them all go, no matter what stage of life they were in. We released the ones that had completed their “change of life,” and dumped the rest back into the canal.
I hope these are the memories my girls hold onto, that this is one of the experiences that they will one day try to give to their own children, all the while telling them how “cool” Grandma (me) is, and about the time I nearly slid into the canal while using kitchen utensils to catch pollywogs in the backyard. And then I hope they do the exact same thing for their children. 🙂