Melissa Fischer. wild in Michigan. naturalist

Posts tagged “toads

And then it was spring and finally summer

Bard and I hiked yesterday and parts of the ground looked like they were moving as hundreds of these little toads hopped about.

Brad and I hiked yesterday and parts of the ground looked like they were moving as hundreds of these little toads hopped about.

Huge crayfish (by Michigan standards...maybe 7 inches.

Huge crayfish (by Michigan standards…maybe 7 inches)



Speckled May Apple? I've never seen this coloration before?

Speckled May Apple? I’ve never seen this coloration before?







Cute snail/ terrible garden pest

Cute snail/ terrible garden pest




Wild Geranium

Wild Geranium


Wild Violet

Wild Violet



Almost out

Almost out

Tent worms

Tent worms

Wild strawberry

Wild strawberry









I finally have a garden again and it's a wonderful feeling.

I finally have a garden again and it’s a wonderful feeling.


If it has a penis, it’s not a spider.

Green Heron Green Heron

Green Heron and a frog.

Green Heron and a frog.

The heron only had the the frog by the end of a leg and brought it to the dock for safer eating. If it dropped the frog the heron wouldn't lose it in the water.

The heron only had the the frog by the end of a leg and brought it to the dock for safer eating. If it dropped the frog the heron wouldn’t lose it in the water.

A meaty frog meal.

A meaty frog meal.

Great Spangled Fritillary (Speyeria cybele)

Great Spangled Fritillary (Speyeria cybele)


Female Rose-breasted Grosbeak.

Female Rose-breasted Grosbeak.


Green Darner

Green Darner

This guy has a penis and spiders don't. He also doesn't have a segmented head or produce silk like spiders. It's an insect, but not a spider.

This guy has a penis and spiders don’t. He also doesn’t have a segmented head or produce silk like spiders. It’s not a spider.










getting dirty with my cold blooded boyfriend

It’s vacation time. I’ve come up to this lake for a week in the summer most of my life. Now my brothers and sister bring their families so we’re a large crowd.

first morning


second morning

Lots of steam off the lake in the morning. I’ve been getting up early before things get loud and hectic… then in the afternoons I swim out about a half mile to the middle of the lake where only one of my brothers and my dad are strong enough or interested enough to swim. I feel like I could swim for days and days.

the bottom of a lily pad

turtle moving along the bottom of the lake

catching turtles

I spend an inordinate amount of time laying on the end of the dock non-fishing, which entails throwing food to the fish and turtles in the water and occasionally netting one and letting it go. Here is the view looking down into the water at a few turtles and fish.

fish and turtles eating hotdogs…mmmm

I got up for a minute to grab my camera and when I came out my dad had taken my spot on the dock…. and my net.

my dad (:

genetics at play….

my daughter in the first moment of vacation

There are a lot of animals outside of the water too.

fledging bird…. not sure what kind

A big toad.

Red-headed Woodpeckers. The adult male has the red head and the other is a juvenile.

Swallow Tail caterpillar. In its later instars it had a large dark spot that looks like an eye to fake out predators.

I even ran into a turtle on a run.

This is a rescue turtle my niece and nephew captured that “escaped” back into the lake. I call this one my boyfriend. And by escaped I mean I took them out of their bucket home and returned them to the lake.

See how he’s trying to hold my dirty hand/finger?

An even smaller turtle.

Sometimes I’m so focused on the task at hand I step into trouble. At home it’s usually stepping on prickers and thorns. The dirtiest missteps seem to happen just after a floor is swept or mopped. I’d say I’m more dirty than clean. Here’s my shoe stuck in the sand. I’m just going barefoot the rest of the week.

A busy Friday

I saw a big snake at the pond today. It quickly hid under a large rock. Nothing likes a hot rock or dark log as much as a reptile.

Three eggs in the Robin's nest. There are also three eggs in the bluebird's nest box. In the past, the first clutch is five bluebird eggs.

The frog or toad eggs are already changing. I see tailbuds!

My friend Hopemarie called me from her garden after accidentally digging up a rabbit nest. I quickly researched the do’s and don’t of rabbits nests and headed over to her house to get a few photos. I love that she included me.

Rabbits in their nest.

A baby rabbit

The allium are about to bloom. Allium are in the onion family.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak

familiar stranger’s video


An Eastern Kingbird. They catch insects on the fly.

Rabbits taking a break from roses and tulips and to eat dandelions.

A frog I was able to spot after watching my friend, Ed's video.

Here’s Ed’s video… very cool. My friend Helen passed me along to her brother Ed when I needed a bird identified.

I met Helen via facebook. I joined a Michigan Birder’s Group and it only had two other members. One was Helen and the other was my Mom. They are both very cool women…. very intelligent and informed.

I don't know what this is. I don't have an insect field guide...yet.

Stand on my back and fertilize my eggs

My friend recently asked if I’d seen any frog eggs yet.

I’d only gathered tadpoles before, and wondered what frog eggs even looked like.

Yesterday afternoon one of two toads jumped into a pond as I approached. The toad below sat unmoving while I took a few pictures.

It was then I noticed long black strands of what looked like string. Toad eggs!

The nearby toad continued to sit still even after my kids and their friends stopped by to skip rocks. Luckily I have a one skip rule so she wasn’t too disturbed.
I’m assuming this was the female sitting quietly by freshly laid eggs since I read
the male steps on her back to fertilize the eggs she lays. Her end of the deal seems more physically demanding and more deserving of an extended rest.

A toad.


It's not string after all.

So now I have a great jar of toad eggs!

I got you a toad for your birthday.

American Toad. This Toad was hanging out in my friend Kelly's empty pond. It's her birthday toad. (:

I can't wait to put away the hats and mittens. Our cat drags hats and mittens from the mud room into our bedrooms as gifts. It's better than dead baby animals, but pretty annoying…. and weird. We have a lot of winter laughs over the cat defending us against the scary hats and mittens

Winter hat. .

An Eastern Bluebird. The bluebirds perch and hunt insects from this wire. I saw a stink bug today-happy hunting.