Unmistakable signs that spring has finally sprung. Most folks have heard the nightly chorus of spring peepers, but few ever have seen them. The one pictured here, is a wood frog I believe.
Fun Facts: Not all frogs in cold climates bury themselves deeply enough to avoid freezing temperatures in the winter. There are actually five species of frogs in North America that can freeze and survive. Two of these frogs are the spring peeper and the Western chorus frog. As temperatures dip below 32 degrees, these frogs start producing their own “antifreeze” to help preserve the most essential organs. Up to 70% of the frog’s body can freeze, to the point that the heart stops pumping and the frog appears to be dead. Scientists still aren’t sure how frozen frogs can wake up again, but once they thaw out and wake up, most frogs will go through a period of healing before they resume their normal lives.
There’s something stunning about a bright-red male cardinal against a snowy backdrop. Especially when they are in my yard. The cardinal is one of the most highly desirable backyard birds in North America. The northern cardinal’s strong, thick bill is perfect for large seeds, and black oil sunflower seeds and safflower seeds are two of their favorites. Other foods cardinals prefer include cracked corn, peanut pieces, fresh berries, apple chunks and small pieces, crumbles or shreds of suet. These foods should be offered in large, wide feeders with plenty of space for birds to perch – small tube feeders are unsuitable for cardinals unless they have a large tray at the bottom. Platform feeders and large hopper feeders are good choices, but avoid lightweight hanging feeders that may swing or sway under these birds’ weight. Ensuring feeders are filled early in the morning and late in the evening, as these birds are often the first and last to visit feeders each day. If there is no food available when the birds arrive, they may leave and not return.