Sunday, June 19, 2011

Toad habitats 1

A likely toad habitat is a seasonal wetland area, these seasonal ponds and water ways are called "vernal pool " habitats.  In California the vernal pool ecosystems are among the most threatened habitats.  This is primarily from human land development. The cycle of the vernal pools is that in meadows and  woodland fields, water accumulates from run off and winter precipitation and stays long enough for toads and frogs to breed in and hatch eggs, was well as other species. The pollywogs go through their cycle, growing legs to emerge as a frog or toad before the water dries up.  In wet years more off spring survive, such as the year of 2011 in our neck of the woods, a high water year, producing a lot of pollywogs(see pictures).  The vernal pool habitats produce a very unique set of wild flowers and plant species, also threatened.  I am fortunate to have vernal pool habitats in the vicinity where I live and am watching the pollywogs, also called  tadpoles,  grow their legs before the water dries up! Phew! 

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