Friday, 14 April 2017

More Reptiles

....and other pond life
This is the coastline to the immediate west of our house. It may look a bit rugged and lifeless, but it's crammed with interesting life, much of which resides in the little ponds and puddles just at the back of the rocky foreshore.

We recently followed roughly the same walk as we did the other day - see post here - and found that a selfless frog seemed to have given his/her life to feed the next generation. Certainly, the tadpoles were thronging around the corpse.

In several nearby puddles the results of toads' mating were strung out in long chains. They seemed all-too visible: one would have expected that some passing scavenger would have stopped to eat them.

In the newts' pond we found these bubbles in just one secluded area of the bottom. They may be eggs or they may simply be bubbles of gas forming from the rotting vegetation - or whatever it is that forms the bottom of the pool.

In the same pool we found this creature, about 40mm long, which seemed to be trying to dig its way into the brown bottom sediment. We have no idea what it is, nor whether it belongs in the pond or just fell in.

This, on the other hand, is almost certainly a dragonfly nymph. They're active predators, and tadpoles are on their menu - which may explain the lack of them in this particular pond.

There are at least two species of pond skaters active, one of which is Velia caprai, the common water cricket, identified by Derryck Morton when we found them at Lochan na Cloiche earlier in March - see post here. This is a different, rather larger one.


  1. In picture #4, couldn't the bubbles be Oxygen from the algae photosynthesizing?

  2. We're going to have another look at it, John. Jon