Category Archives: correspondence

Why won’t our toad grow?

Fowler's toad
Fowler’s toad

We found what I believe to be a Fowler’s toad last June.  My daughter wanted to keep it as a pet since it is injured.  We don’t know what happened but it was already healed, it just doesn’t have a  foot.  Anyways, it’s now the end of March and he is still the same size?  He’s only about an 2 inches, maybe less.  Feeding him is a nightmare because he is so small.  Finding things small enough to fit into his mouth is almost impossible.  We try though!  We buy mini crickets, pellets, mealworms, and he loves the little pillbugs!  We feed him every day but he’s just not growing.  Is this normal?   Jessica

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What is the gold sheen on the water?

On some still ponds in an area  which was used for military training during WW2 and then became a clay pigeon shoot, a gold sheen appears during the summer months. It disappears when disturbed only to re-appear if left alone. I have not seen it anywhere else.  It could be that material was buried here at the end of the war which could provide a special environment due to leakage, of, for example, phosphorous, which I know was used to make anti-tank bombs. I suspect a micro organism of some sort but what?

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