Writing is like being able to put life into a snow globe. It takes the things that are too big and scary and reduces them into a form that I can put away when I want and look at from a distance. It also takes all that’s good in life and captures it into something I can take out when I want and look at close up and keep forever. It makes the bad things into something I can hold…and the good things into something I can hold onto. Both help so much that I need that little souvenir of life.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Stuff From Around My Backyard: Lazarus Frog

I’ve mentioned before that my little pond is much too small to over-winter fish on its own, but this year I decided to buy a heater and net and give it a go. So far the fish seem fine, but the frogs are another story.

I once looked up the term for a group of frogs. “Army.” This year we ended up with an army of two. Then one frog apparently fled when the net went on. I made sure to cover the overhanging rock so that they could find their way in by going under the ledge, but that obstacle course was a challenge for them. Apparently only one of them passed froggy boot camp and learned to take the less direct route. That was only the beginning of the battles for this little army of one.

Then on a warmish winter day, I saw this (left). I was so upset! What had caused the little guy to croak? The fish looked fine. I consulted the internet, which assured me that belly-up is just never a good sign in the animal kingdom. I turned to my friend Fran for “Franalysis.” She is a master gardener and my consultant for all things nature-oriented. We both agreed he had pretty good color for a dead frog. She told me to delay scooping the body to see what happened. Good advice.

Long story shorter: I’ve taken to doing almost daily Frog Checks. The “body” disappeared, reappeared on the other side of the pond, and disappeared again. There is no current in there. Then on New Year’s Eve day (which was very warm here), I saw the following sight.
 I’m sorry if this is a boring post to the non-nature lovers among you, but I feel obligated to share with the world my completely non-scientific discovery that apparently frogs CAN hibernate belly up. And anyway…I don’t think it hurts to start the new year with a tiny miracle of sorts.

Good luck Lazarus! You’re one tough little soldier.

There’s a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Mostly dead is slightly alive. ~Miracle Max, “The Princess Bride”


  1. I love the use of the word "croak." Apparently the only croaking he was doing the okay kind...

    I think I would have instantly scooped up the frog and dumped it. Lucky Lazarus is fortunate that his pond was not in my yard.

    This year, put out signs in the neighborhood, so you can attract a larger army than two...

  2. I too hibernate belly up. Your posts are fun and froggy is okay!

  3. Glad Lazarus soldiered up and is amont the living. And I love the name "Franalysis."

  4. Lazarus is one tough trooper! That is my spring goal, to get my pond in :)
    Jules @ Trying To Get Over The Rainbow

  5. Sioux, it's funny, but I hate dealing with the frogs in summer. All of the pond rocks have to be positioned just so or the darned thing leaks...and the frogs are forever hopping on them and messing up my work. But I can't help but root for...the UNDERFROG!

    "I too hibernate belly up." HEE HEE!!! Linda, you are priceless.

    Thanks, Donna! Glad you stopped by!

    Hope you have better luck with the frogs than I do, Jules! :)

  6. Glad I was able to save Lazarus from being prematurely scooped! Glad to help with the Franalysis! I always hope for Frantastic results! Hee


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