Wildlife & Gardens

Discussion in 'Taylor's Tittle-Tattle - General Banter' started by Sting, May 7, 2019.

  1. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    I tried to find an old thread about wildlife/ gardens etc that I am sure was either started by or certainly involved Kelso who was keen on that sort of thing - but no luck - anyone know what happened to him?
    Does anyone know whether having fish in a pond means that you cannot have frogs breed there. In our pond earlier this year we had some good frogspawn but it all disappeared and we think the fish may have eaten it.
     
  2. Diamond

    Diamond Squad Player

    Yeah there was a thread about. What I do know is that frogs are good to have around as they eat snails.
     
  3. I'm yer man. Give me 10 mins and I'll get back to you.
     
  4. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    At the moment snails are not a problem - the "most hated" cup final here is between slugs and greenfly which are both giving me grief at the moment
     
  5. hornmeister

    hornmeister Administrator Staff Member

    You need beer traps and ladybirds
     
  6. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    I confess I use slug pellets.
    I would need a Dothraki sized army of ladybirds.
     
  7. If you have a fish pond in your garden, almost invariably frogs will find the pond. Frogs are actually pre-programmed to head back to the pond they hatched in when it comes to breeding but occasionally that pond may no longer seem suitable or yours may seem a better bet. Frogs therefore might spend a lot of the summer in your pond but disappear off to lay spawn elsewhere. If you do get frogspawn in your pond, yes the fish (unless very small) will eat the hatchlings, particularly early on when they tend to just hang onto the remanants of the spawn and don't travel quickly. Some will survive but the number will depend on the number and size of fish and the amount of weed and cover from baskets round the shelf at the edge.

    Interestingly fact of the day - If you happen to have toads in your garden, they actually prefer ponds with fish as their tadpoles have a foul taste and fish tend to leave them alone plus they don't need to complete with frog tadpoles as they get eaten by the fish.

    The ideal, if you are a nature lover, and have the room, is to have an attractive pond near the house with fish and a then smaller wild pond further from the house with no fish for the frogs and newts etc. This is what I do. Make sure you have a waterfall as this attracts birds and other wildlife to drink esp in the hot dry spells.
     
  8. Thrushes and blackbirds are the most effective at eating snails, as do hedgehogs and badgers. Frogs are more likely to eat insects and worms.
     
  9. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    Thanks TuT. Funnily enough we moved here a few years ago and there were two preformed small-ish ponds side by side. I took them out and replaced them with a decent sized one near the house and decking. Idea was it was for wildlife but eventually we got some fish for the grandchildren to view and enjoy. We had (and still have) newts in the pond.
    For a couple of years I left the plastic pools upside down in a dead corner of the garden. Last year though I put one back in as a raised pond so it is even easier to see the fish - but is not easily accessible to wildlife as the first one is. Then a couple of months ago the other - small plastic pond cried out to be used and Mrs S has made it into a raised but wildlife pond - no fish so I am hoping our frogs lay at least some spawn there.
    She feeds the birds so much and we have bird baths etc so really have an amazing number and variety of birds. (She is not much liked by our neighbours for feeding the gulls and foxes though).
     
  10. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    Not seen a badger here but I got Mrs S a trail camera for her last birthday and she was delighted to see a hedgehog in the garden - we suspected we had one from the poo but had never seen it.
     
  11. Keighley

    Keighley Squad Player

    You don’t want badgers, they make a frightful noise, dig huge holes under fences and eat tulips!!

    Fortunately our local lot have been moved on by the foxes (which aren’t much better, but aren’t partial to tulips at least!).

    Re Kelso: last post from him came from a pub in the Scilly Isles last summer.
     
  12. Very very lucky. They are getting really rare these days. We have a pretty large garden with mature hedges all the way round backing onto countryside and had hoped to be a release site . Would have been perfect for HHs but next door have 2 terriers which kill anything that breaths so it was a non starter. Hedgehogs often drown in ponds so need to make sure they can get to the edge and clamber out. We get deer (which ate the wild meadow I planted :-( ), foxes, badgers and use a trail camera too.
     
  13. Badgers are great but can be a real nuisance. If you try to block them going where they want they just dig their way under fences, rocks etc. Main downside is they eat frogs !
     
  14. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    :) - Mrs S has built exit ramps on all ponds.
    Behind the houses on the opposite side of the road to us is some grazing land and some deer live there. Occasionally they find their way out and into the road and gardens. More often sheep escape and using my Welsh experience I have been successful in getting them back home
     
  15. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    When we lived back in Watford badgers used to run through our garden which was open but an opposite neighbour had a fence almost destroyed by an annoyed badger who was determined to get through.
    In Wales we border Brechfa forest so had tons of badgers around.
     
  16. You can always move the spawn if they lay it in the wrong pond ! Trouble is you can end up with so much that you can't move it all.
     
  17. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    Did not think of that - great idea.

    Right: - time to take the Pug down for a run along the beach before rain moves in
     
  18. We've only seen the badgers on the camera traps but we'd always suspected as a large hole appeared once and there are often the tell-tale small holes scratched in the lawn. We have quite a few newts and a pheasant who is pretty tame and stares at us through the patio windows when he want to be fed but has had a few scrapes with our cat. It wanders out into our road and just expects card to drive round it. No sheep !
     
  19. RookeryDad

    RookeryDad Squad Player

    What a peaceful haven this is.

    Far removed from the sturm & drang of the Politics thread in which modern society is being forged.
     
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  20. Yes and a haven we can affect and change to how we want it to be. Politics ultimately is out of our hands as undividuals, and we watch with trepidation through the gaps between our fingers ...
     
  21. RookeryDad

    RookeryDad Squad Player

    Never look between your fingers on the Politics thread!
     
    Sting likes this.
  22. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    Right - off into the garden - bamboo canes to put up ready for the runner beans.
    Had them delivered yesterday - about 30 "8 foot" canes - with just a tie round them. I said to the delivery driver - oh, I wonder what that parcel is. He just looked at me. Proof as if others on here did not know it that I have a weird and sometimes incomprehensible sense of humour.
    Must go - rain threatens later.
     
  23. StuBoy

    StuBoy Forum Cad and Bounder

    Now it's raining, my annual battle with the slugs begins again in earnest. Beer traps and pellets at the ready!

    Also getting a new hoe (the gardening type....) delivered today, so looking forward to doing battle with the weeds on Sunday. Having a 3 month old baby does not help when it comes to doing spring gardening chores.
     
  24. It's a brave man who leaves it until May to do battle with the weeds.
    With a 3 month old baby I'd have thought you'd have been pretty much camped in the garden since the first snowdrop appeared. The garden should be immaculate by now.
     
    Sting likes this.
  25. hornmeister

    hornmeister Administrator Staff Member

    When you open the parcel can you let me know what was in it. The suspense is killing me.
     
    HappyHornet24 and Sting like this.
  26. hornmeister

    hornmeister Administrator Staff Member

    I find that if you cut the end of the hoe and make the handle shorter, the baby should be able to manage OK.
     
  27. StuBoy

    StuBoy Forum Cad and Bounder

    Every time I go into the garden, even if it's to cut the grass, I get met by dismay by my wife. So in the interests of sanity all round, the weeds have had to wait and grow stronger.
     
  28. PhilippineOrn

    PhilippineOrn First Team

    Don't know if it's frogs or toads but one of them actively drown fish. They piggy back them and with their hind legs squeeze the fishes' gills shut. A friend of mine had all his fish killed this way, the dead fish I saw even had deep indentations either side of it's head. The pressure applied must have been substantial.
     
  29. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    A 3 month old baby. Lovely as they are I can't pretend I would swap places with you - visits of grandchildren these days proves exhausting. (However if you are cunning you can convince a four year old what fun it is to fish dead leaves our of your pond with a fishing net).
     
  30. It's very unusual. The issue is only related to male frogs in breeding season when they grab hold of females to mate. Excited confused frogs can grab other males and very occasionally grab a fish by mistake. I've never seen it in 40+ years of frogs in fish ponds. Your friend must have been incredibly unlucky.
     
  31. Sting

    Sting Squad Player

    We have had to rescue a female frog being held down by a larger male.
     
  32. Bear in mind they can hold their breath for a long time and often mate underwater !
     
  33. hornmeister

    hornmeister Administrator Staff Member

    Should have poured cold water on them.

    Actually that might not have worked.
     
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  34. HappyHornet24

    HappyHornet24 Crapster Staff Member

    I could have supplied this to you - we had an infestation of ladybirds in our window frames a couple of months ago. Used to love the things but I went off them sharpish when I kept finding dozens of the buggers on our bedroom floor and wall next to the window.

    While on the subject of nature, a question for those more informed than me on the subject (ie all of the contributors to this thread). Why, when we have deer fences around our garden, do we still get muntjac occasionally finding their way in? One time we had three of them skipping round the garden. Which would be lovely, apart from the fact that we have two dogs so not a match made in heaven. Luckily, so far, we've spotted them when the dogs have been inside and have been able to keep them in until we're as sure as we can be that the deer have gone. I think I know which side of the garden they're coming in from and getting out of (it's bordered by woods) but there are no holes or gaps in the fence and it seems too high for them to jump.
     
  35. PhilippineOrn

    PhilippineOrn First Team

    You might be right, my friend thought it was to stop the fish eating the spawn. It would be hearsay if I hadn't seen the holes in the sides of that one fish's head.
     

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