Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Why it is great to have frogs!

Having frogs in your backyard, parkland or ecosystem is a great sign. Frogs are very sensitive to toxins in the environment, as they have highly permeable skins and therefore are often labelled as bio-indicators. 

If you don't have frogs currently in your backyard, don't worry there are ways to encourage them to share your lovely patch.

Methods to encourage frogs
  • habitat - some species require permanent sources of water, whilst others primarily spend most of their time within the cover provided by trees and/or shrubs
  • limit your use of toxic chemicals around your house and garden - stop using chemical pesticides and herbicides in your garden and turn to organic practices, where possible
  • food source - encourage attractive insects into your garden. Instead of spraying mosquitoes or spiders leave them around. Also if plan on having a pond include plants in the waterbody
  • keep your pets away - they just don't mix, although the old lap dog probably won't affect the balance
Why have frogs?
  • indicates that you have a healthy ecosystem in your patch
  • means other processes in your area are likely to be functioning - if the frogs are there, then many of native species will be present too
  • indicates that you will be less exposed to toxic chemicals, because where there are frogs there are unlikely to be a plethora of chemicals
  • reduction in nasty insects, such as those biting mosquitoes
  • lovely night time choruses
Just as a heads up....if you're planning on encouraging frogs with a pond in your backyard avoid having shallow water on the edges and where possible have more vertical walls as this will reduce the likelihood that cane toads will call your pond home.

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