The Felty Folk and I meet some tadpoles

I’ve been keeping an eye on the flood ponds by Lauder Burn where I saw loads of frogspawn about a month ago. Last time I went there some of the tadpoles had hatched, but were teeny tiny. This morning was gloriously sunny so I headed out there again to see if there were any frogs yet. Here are some of the ponds:

Flood ponds at the side of Lauder Burn

Lauder Paths Network beautifully maintain this path, and there’s a boardwalk over the boggy area around the ponds:

Boardwalk at Lauder Burn

This means you can get right up close to the wildlife in the ponds, which were filled with tadpoles of all sizes:

Tadpoles

A familiar face popped up by a pond:

Neeva and Tadpoles

“Hi Neeva, good to see you again. What are you doing down there?”

Neeva and Tadpoles close up

“We’re playing with the tadpoles, come and see,” said Neeva . I sat down on the boardwalk edge, and found a spot to put my feet without getting wet and damaging anything, and there they were:

Felty Folk at water's edge

“Who’s your friend, Neeva?”

“This is Dod. He lives up on the common.”

“Hello Dod. I saw you asleep on the common last week.”

“Oh dear,” said Dod, “did you? I must remember to hide myself better, I must have dozed off…”

“He’s always doing that,” Neeva interrupted, and they both giggled. Neeva explained that she quite like seeing the young tadpoles, and how they gradually morphed into frogs, and she liked the way they nibbled and tickled her feet in the water.

Felty Folk and Tadpoles

“Would you like to see the tadpoles a bit more clearly?” I asked, “I’ve got a jam jar with me so we can have a look at them better.” Dod and Neeva thought this was a good idea, so I dipped the jar in the pond, and a few tadpoles swam in, and we had a look:

Dod, Neeva and jar

The ones in the jar were still quite small, but I did see a tadpole in a pond with a slightly textured head and some little bumps at the sides that looked like fins coming out. I felt a bit sorry for the tadpoles swimming round and around, so slid them back in the pond with their brothers and sisters. I’ll have to check on the ponds again soon to find frogs. Neeva said they liked to run competitions with the frogs to see who could jump highest. I said I’d definitely be back for that!

I said my goodbyes and headed back along the path, and noticed the bright yellow green of some spurge (I think) by the ponds.

Spurge

I love all the flowers coming out in the Spring but my current favorite is the Blackthorn:

Blackthorn

I love the way it spits out sprays of creamy stars from hard thorny black twigs. Close up it’s almost fluffy.

Blackthorn close up

It makes me feel hungry and thirsty and heartsick all at the same time, and makes my heart sing when I see it in the hedgerows or beside the road.

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