One recent Sunday, I headed with a friend to Tregaron Conservancy in Cleveland Park, taking the Rock Creek trail from Pierce Mill south to Klingle Trail. From that trail, the conservancy is located just beyond Connecticut Avenue to the right. I wanted to check out the activity in the bullfrog pond, which I have visited and written about. This was late June, early in the bullfrogs’ mating season, which comes to bloom in July and August. So it was pretty tame, though it you waited awhile by the pond you could hear some croaking.
What did surprise me and my friend was an Eastern copperhead snake. I watched as it slipped into the water, then slipped out again. These snakes are venomous, but generally not aggressive. While my friend backed a safe distance away, I captured it on video.
“It’s going to carry you away,” my friend joked.
The following week I ventured out in a drizzle to the Linnean frog ponds. The green tree frogs were out croaking away.
Another friend was there to greet me: A frog that I often spotted between the split trunks of the footbridge heading from Linnean to Broad Branch Terrace. I hadn’t seen it for a while, but this time, my friend was there and held its stance until I passed.
While they’re called green tree frogs, they come in different colors. And they can even change color depending on the temperature, lighting conditions, and general surroundings. So in these photos, taken on the same visit, you can see the color variances.
Green tree frogs breathe through their skin and spend most of their adult life outside of the water. But, they need to be near water to mate and keep their skin moist.
Amphibians are declining worldwide. To have frogs coming back to the Linnean and Broad Branch daylighted streams is quite an accomplishment. Take a walk and enjoy.