Notes From The Field Blog
Matters of Mating
There's nothing quite like listening to the sound of chorusing frogs or watching salamanders wiggle their way across the road. Male spring peepers and wood frogs make their presence known as they call for a mate and the sound can be deafening. Unlike spotted and Jefferson salamanders, which are silent and use pheromones to entice their mate. On rainy nights in late winter or early spring, you have the opportunity to witness this awesome mating ritual for yourself. It is a very exciting and unique experience for visitors who brave these cold, rainy nights.
So, here is some information and guidelines to make the experience better for you and, most importantly, our amphibian friends.
- Pay attention as you drive on cold, rainy nights in March and April, you may travel through other migration spots within the Park District.
- Watch your step. These animals are small and very difficult to see in the dark; therefore easy to step on. We ask that all visitors have their own bright flashlight and watch every step they take. We also prefer that you leave strollers and pets at home.
- Stay on the road or all purpose trail. Diseases found in water and soil and can easily be transferred by amphibians moving to new areas or on the boots of humans. To help stop the spread in our area, please stay on pavement. Boots can become contaminated while walking around the ponds, not to mention these animals are well-camouflaged and are really hard to see in the leaf litter.
- Do not touch or pick them up. These animals are beautiful and really cool to see, but amphibians use their skin to take in oxygen, water and electrolytes. Handling them can lead to illness, infection or even death for the animal.
It's a lot to remember, but we want to protect these amazing amphibians. So come see (and hear) this annual migration for yourself, it is an experience that you will never forget.
Brecksville Nature Center
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