Our frogs are ready to sink to the bottom of the pond at the first sign of frost. These are the males, who choose to hibernate in amongst the rotten leaves and mud under still water so that they are in prime position to pick a paramour when the females return to the pond to mate and spawn, next April. The females prefer hollow logs and piles of dried leaves for their over-winter bedding.
I say they are ready to sink because they are SO fat. Given a few blasts with a bicycle pump, fat. Fat as butter, fat. Slowed down with carrying it, fat. They have stoked up on enough food for six cold months of deep slow sleep, and an extra fortnight on top. This extra fortnight is the really active bit of the mating season, during which frogs do not eat. They are too busy making froggie lurve for days at a time, the males clutching their partners like shipwreck survivors with floating timbers. So busy that they are skinny with the effort of it afterwards, pitifully bony. But thousands of gloopy black-eyed eggs the better off..
Would you give up food for sex, even if it were for only two weeks of the year? No, of course not. So Nuff Re-SPECK to those wikkle frogs, eh?
This is all I am going to write today. Instead please enjoy ths photograph. I do - enormously.