It’s raining cats and…frogs?

Unfortunately, given the precipitous worldwide population crash among frog populations over the last few years*, even though the rainy season has kicked into high gear here in Florida, I’m not hearing a lot of calling frogs.

Anecdotal evidence is mounting as well. When we first moved into our house in Florida, every rain would bring peeps and croaks and ribbits from the front and back of the house, in our pond, everywhere. Since the rainy season began, I’ve seen exactly one frog, a Cuban Treefrog:

And every wet evening, I hear one, maybe two weakly calling individuals. Nothing at all like the cacophony that we were used to after even a brief time in Florida.

When M’s parents moved into their home in central California, it was sometimes hard to follow a phone conversation, so insistently was the nighttime chorus; walking outside at night one was sure to squish one or two little guys. Not so anymore; I can’t remember the last time I saw an anuran at their house, although I think I still hear them from time to time.

It would be a shame if this is the end of their hundreds of millions of years here on Earth. Although I missed this year’s Save the Frog day (it was back in April), there’s still time to celebrate World Turtle Day (tomorrow).

*How long has the recent decline been going on? Pick your timeframe: at least a decade; I have articles about disappearing frogs dating back to 1994 in Ranger Rick magazine; two decades, maybe? More?