FROGS IN YOUR BACK­YARD

A pond is a must for at­tract­ing frogs to your home. You can make one us­ing al­most any­thing from wad­ing pools to half wine bar­rels.

Australian Geographic - - Wild Australia -

1 Some frogs like to be cramped when spawn­ing. Oth­ers need space. Some will lay eggs in wa­ter­filled de­pres­sions in the ground, while oth­ers climb to places with wa­ter. Small tad­poles mainly eat al­gae, so there’s no need to re­move it from your gar­den.

2 A gar­den light will at­tract night in­sects for adult frogs. A flu­o­res­cent black light will at­tract bee­tles and moths.

3 Frogs can usu­ally get around, over or through fences, but if none ap­pear and im­pen­e­tra­ble fences might be the prob­lem, make 2cm x 5cm gaps at the bot­tom of your fences.

4 Place com­post bins near ponds; they at­tract in­sects.

5 A bog gar­den re­tains mois­ture year-round to pro­vide great habi­tat for many marsh-lov­ing species. It’s a hole lined with pond liner and filled with soil or other or­ganic mat­ter. It can be linked to a pond and fed by a down­pipe, or sim­ply lo­cated in a damp area.

6 Shal­low ponds should be in par­tial or full shade in sum­mer.

7 Avoid us­ing too many float­ing plants such as duck­weed, be­cause they deprive the wa­ter of oxy­gen and block out light im­por­tant for the growth of al­gae.

8 Large logs and rock piles pro­vide great hid­ing places for frogs.

9 If wa­ter re­stric­tions al­low, wa­ter­ing around your pond or dam will en­cour­age frogs to move around. In­crease leaf mulch and mois­tur­ere­tain­ing ground cov­ers (but don’t use acidic pine-bark mulch).

10 Don’t use treated pine or other treated tim­bers for pond edges, be­cause the chem­i­cals can be harm­ful to frogs.

11 Ponds more than 30cm deep may need pool fences or wire mesh over them be­cause of the drown­ing risk to small children.

12 Keep grass and other veg­e­ta­tion long and thick near your pond.

13 Avoid us­ing fer­tilis­ers and pes­ti­cides in ar­eas where you are en­cour­ag­ing frogs. Don’t let run-off that may con­tain ma­nure en­ter the pond or dam – a low earth wall can de­flect run-off.

Dis­cover Aus­tralia’s unique frog fauna with Aus­tralian Geo­graphic’s new A Com­plete Guide to Frogs of Aus­tralia (avail­able at aus­tralian­geo­graphic.com.au/frog­book), the Aus­tralian Mu­seum’s FrogID app, and the stun­ning wall poster free in this is­sue of AUS­TRALIAN GEO­GRAPHIC.

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