he’s back: one big-boy bullfrog returns

fat bullfrogIN A RAINSTORM HE DEPARTED, AND IN A RAINSTORM HE RETURNED. One of my five beloved big bullfrogs (above) hopped back in the other wet night after a four and one-half month absence, with not so much as a single word of explanation, and just that same stupid smile on his face. The young female bull the frogboys had deserted, now grown to adult size, wasn’t having any, and turned her back to him across the pond. Hell hath no fury…but only temporarily.

2 bulfrogs reunited
By the next day the two were checking each other out, tucked in beside a flower pot together (above), and by next spring—well, you know what will be happening by next spring. Actually, they’ll soon be sleeping together in the muck at the bottom of the pool for the winter, though I have it on good authority she’s warned him that there will be no monkey business (frogboy business?) until next May or June.

She’s worth waiting for; I just hope he (top and below) knows it, and sticks around.
male bullfrog

Categoriesfrogboys woo woo
  1. Jody says:

    Welcome home Big Boy Bullfrog! Our little lady left at some point last fall/winter and we had no girl frogs this spring so it was a quiet summer frog wise, just 3 boys who hung out all summer and who are now heading to mucksville. This weekend I start removing plants and cutting them back to prep for winter.

    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Jody. So your girl was the deserter, huh? It’s always someone who walks (hops) out in a huff. :) My guys are furious about the cutbacks near their pool, but the Great Blue heron is delighted. I have laid 10-foot bamboo poles across the pool to discourage Big Bird. See you soon.

  2. Jan says:

    Well, you’ve almost helped me get over my horror of frogs . . . never thought that would happen, but these boys have their own handsome style and you seem very fond of them . . . I’ll work on appreciating them.

  3. chigal says:

    That’s wild — do you know for sure that he’s one of the frogs that left, or could he be yet another migrant from somewhere else? (I’d probably be sifting through my photos trying to make a match, but they all look pretty similar — like that crazy crow quiz.)

  4. JWLW says:

    HI Margaret:
    We did not have a lot of frogs this summer. Must have been a frog convention somewhere. If they could only talk, the stories they would tell.

    Have a great afternoon,

  5. Tammy says:

    fickle frogs fleeing far from fans, foraging for food finds fun, friskiness, frolicking ” froggy filly” … family.

    That rascal, glad he’s back!

  6. Charlotte Cantrell says:

    Awww…the “frogboys” of summer. Sounds like a song to me. Ribbitt…ribbitt. Or as my grandfather use to say. How deep is the water? “kneedeep…kneedeep”!
    Or how is the water boys? “muddywater…muddywater”!
    My husband always say’s they are saying “peterdeep…peterdeep”, but that a whole ‘nother’ joke. :-)

  7. celia says:

    I have green frogs for the first time in my 5 yr. old pond. Research tells me that most frogs freeze in backyard ponds over the winter. I probably keep my pond too clean, and there is not enough sludge in the bottom for hibernation. I lowered a pot of mud into the pond hoping the frogs will bury themselve into it as it gets colder. I really have become quite attached over the summer!!

    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Celia. The key is that the water surface must not freeze solid or they will suffocate; I use a floating immersion heater to see to that – to keep a hole open in it for gas exchange. This is of course assuming the pool is dug deep enough not to freeze down to the bottom – deeper than the frost line. That would kill them too, if it froze solid down below. I talk about it here. I let some leaf litter accumulate each fall (not tons, but some) and they seem to like that semi-decayed junk in both my pools.

  8. stacey says:

    I was just googling about bullfrogs that return because mine had left and I was sad and now he’s back and I found your post. I’m so glad I did. I hate finding all the info about ponds used to catch and kill the frogs for the table as if there’s not enough dead stuff already at the store. I have found a kindred spirit. My beautiful boy left without a word on a rainy day as well it’s been a couple of weeks ago. I missed him, Hector,and then I found a green frog in my dog’s baby pool and caught him in a bucket and poured him into the pond where he seemed happy. I don’t think Hector My Bullfrog liked that very much and he came back today! It’s the first overcast day we’ve had 30% chance of rain with no other chances in sight but I don’t think it’s going to rain. Apparently Hec has booted that frog out and perched right back where he used to be. These frogs are amazing. We ruined all their habitat including our turtles and anything we can do to help is a plus.

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