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The Babies Cometh! spade foot toad invasion

      It is frightening to dig in the garden in early spring before the Spade foot Toads have gotten out of bed. I roused one with my trowel. Mortified, I inspected her for any damage. She hung in my fingers, regarding me with her calm bottomless eyes. Who could not fall in love? Her tiny hands were too lovely. I had to paint her and place something wonderful in her arms. I have this print in my home and love it. The painting sold immediately much to my surprise, and this is one of my most popular images.

The massive rains of the last couple of weeks have made the low area to the south of our house into a wide, low  lake. Lake DeCay- as the lawn turns to muck. There was a patch of  water erupting. Curious, I pulled on my boots and wadded in.

There were a gajillion pollywogs bubbling away. I thought yikes- what happens when they get out of the pool.!

This is the density of the hatchlings. They poured in mini tsunamis across the patio and down the mulched path through the garden. The goats, the cats and ozzy the dog plowed through them without conscience. I could barely walk. Grass was impossible-my feet were meteor hits on Lilliputians. 

Froglandia #toadies

A post shared by Dana Simson Orth (@simsonorth) on

The Spade Foot Toad Routine

In the mornings we drink coffee and watch all the little spade foot toads going to work somewhere north. (going left) In the evenings we drink beer and watch all the little spade foot toads going home or somewhere south. (back to the right)

They grow increasingly larger each day. We have no mosquitoes. I hope they will get large enough to put a dramatic dent in the fly population.

I am very pleased that the baby I imagined when I painted Mama Spade foot some years ago after I inadvertently dug her up when putting in a tomato, looks just like these dudes.

This is a link to a print of her: 

I have framed print in my kitchen.

parenting art print spadfoot toad and Tad


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