Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Ugh! They're doing it on my pool cover!

Polliwogs The other day I posted on Facebook that our pool cover was covered with polliwogs.  I was startled that so many people had never heard the term before.  (But they had heard of tadpoles.)

For those of you who've never seen a polliwog, they look like giant sperm cells.  (Well, the term "giant" is relevant.  A pollywog is about 1/4" long.)

Anyway, seeing about a billion polliwogs can only mean one thing:  wanton frog sex has been going on on our pool cover.

Back in April, there were two toads in the water.  Dim bulbs that they are, they'd jumped in (this was after we'd drained most of the melted snow) and couldn't figure out how to get out. They didn't seem particularly interested in each other so I figured they were probably the same gender. (Are there gay frogs?)  I grabbed the screen/skimmer and easily captured the first one, setting him/her in the garden.  The second did NOT want to be caught and swam away every time I tried to capture it.  So I waited about half an hour.  During that time, it tried to climb up the side of the cover.  I figured it would get tired, and it did.  Then I captured it and set it under the arborvitae.

Tadpole8 So, how do they repay my kindness?  By having a bazillion babies on the pool cover.  The thing is, I don't wish to be overrun with their progeny later this summer.  Yes, toads are good for the garden, but several thousand?  For one thing, I'm scared of the things.  They tend to leap out at you at inopportune moments.  One feels compelled to scream, and the neighbors come out and wonder if you're being eviscerated or something.  "No, just a toad going for my throat."  They look disgusted and go back into their homes.

We pumped off at least 10-15 gallons of water yesterday, hoping the polliwogs would go with it, but alas, they didn't.  Oh dear.

Hubby says polliwogs are like the seeds of maple trees.  A billion fall off of every tree every year, but rarely does a tree grown from the seeds, and even rarer grows to have seeds of its own one day.

I hope he's right.  I do not want to spend my entire summer saving these stupid amphibians from drowning in the pool.  Been there, done that.  And they keep jumping in.  (I'll bet I saved the same toad at least five times last year.)

I've got a book to deliver in five weeks.  I don't have time to worry about polliwogs.

How about you?