The pair of Mallard Ducks are back for what is at least their third year. They are clearly park ducks as the don’t scare off easily. They have been observed dabbling up the hatching tadpoles,
reaching under the windows we put over the spawn, to protect it from frosts and predators.
However on the plus side, after we’d shooed them off the waterlily pond they did go on the ‘natural’ (clay) ponds and started to do a good job eating the duckweed and algae.. Unfortunately next door’s dog went mental, when he saw a cat in our garden rushing at the wire fence and barking loudly, which managed to scare them off before they completed the task..
The first spring after the new waterlily pond was built, three years ago, we had a very good hatching and development of frogs spawn. The following spring the spawn completely failed, we assume, due to it being frosted.
Last year we took some spawn out and started it in a large fibre glass tank in a greenhouse and put the tadpoles in the pond after the risk of frosts. We saw a few froglets later in the summer, but nothing like the first year.
This year the pond is very lively with frogs and there is more spawn than year one, presumably boosted by the successful hatching and development of that year. I have placed an old window over part of the spawn to help protect it, if we have frosts and from predators. Something, presumably a fox dragged some out onto the grass while trying to catch and kill the frogs.