Nature Challenge Day 1: Tree Frog

May 24, 2016 frog 004

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Near the end of a long day of gardening, as I was planting the last Caladium in a bed near our drive and preparing to clean up, my partner came out to check on my progress.   As we were visiting, he asked, “What on Earth is that?!”

He was looking at the front fender of our car, where a light grey blob had attached itself just beyond the headlight.  At first glance it looked like a huge bumpy wad of chewed gum.

I pulled off one muddy glove and retrieved my camera from its pocket in my gardening vest, then ever so quietly focused on the blob.

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May 24, 2016 frog 005

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It never moved as the camera powered up or as I crept into position to shoot.  But it didn’t take long for me to realize this was a living creature clinging to the side of the car.

Not just any creature, but one neither of us had seen before.

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May 24, 2016 frog 007

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It remained perfectly still as I moved around it for several more shots, drawing ever closer.  Finally, I could see its sides moving faintly with its shallow breathing.   But it never startled as we conversed, and I took photo after photo.  We could tell it was some sort of frog, but the strangest frog we’ve ever seen!

Only later, with the photos uploaded and edited, did we finally solve the mystery of its name.  We consulted The Virginia Herpetological Society’s website, where we learned there are two grey tree frogs native to Virginia.  This one appears to be “Cope’s Gray Treefrog,” or Hyla chrysoscelis.

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May 24, 2016 frog 008

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We’re not sure it is an exact match because the frog on our car is much lighter than the ones in their photos.  But the Cope’s Gray Treefrog is native to James City County, so we will go with this identification.

It was still clinging to the side of the car an hour or so later when the cat went outside for the evening.  We hope it has taken up residence in our garden and that we will see it again this summer.  We’ve sometimes seen green tree frogs, in previous years, clinging to the windows of our home.  They never cease to amaze us with their ability to cling for hours on end.

Always peaceful, we enjoy their presence and appreciate their appetite!

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May 24, 2016 frog 009~

Blogging friend, Y,  invited me to join the Seven Day Nature Challenge last Saturday.  Thank you for your invitation Y., at In the Zone, and for sharing your fascinating photos taken around our shared state of Virginia.  Y and I know many of the same places and share a love for the quirky and beautiful, the fun and poignant.  I appreciate her invitation and will follow her lead to capture the spirit, if not the exact parameters of the challenge.

Not only is one asked to post a nature photo for seven days running, but to also invite another blogger to join in each day.

For this first day of the challenge, I’ll invite you.  If you would like to take up the challenge, please accept in the comments and I’ll link back to you tomorrow.

Although I try to take photos in our garden each day, friends and followers may have noticed that it has been a very long time since I’ve been able to post daily.  Life has gotten quite busy over the past year, and I would always rather spend a free hour digging in the dirt, given the blessing of choice!

But in the spirit of the challenge I’ll set the intention to post a photo daily.  If you decide to accept this challenge, too, I’ll look forward to seeing what surprises May has brought to your corner of the world, even as I share the beauty of ours.

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Another photogenic visitor in our garden today, a Broad Headed Skink.

Another photogenic visitor in our garden today, a Broad Headed Skink.

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Woodland Gnome 2016

About woodlandgnome

Lifelong teacher and gardener.

6 responses to “Nature Challenge Day 1: Tree Frog

  1. Amazing that he was on your car – they usually find a less conspicuous place for their terrific camouflage. 🙂

  2. I did a post some time ago featuring the sounds of tree frogs, but I remarked at the time that I had never actually seen a tree frog. What a treat to be able to see one!

  3. The colour of this frog is amazing. We enjoy green tree frogs here in sw france. Often in winters past they have hibernated in the stones around the old stone sink and come into the house to chase flies. They are adorable. Nice post.

    • Tree frogs in your home? Oh my! The skinks sneak into our garage occasionally, but the frogs have not yet found their way in! They are absolutely adorable. Thank you for visiting ❤ ❤ ❤

  4. Oh woo hoo!! Thanks for joining in and you truly were the first one that came to my mind – and I hope others can do it too!
    Anyhow – the photos here were really fun – but my best takeaway was seeing (imagining) you all marvel at the frog clinging to the window – something so deeply contented with this kind of appreciation – 🐸🐸🐸🐸

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