Toad Patrol

By Kristina Gore

If you’ve ever been to Bluestone in early spring, you may have noticed that a number of toads have checked in at the resort. There’s actually a very special reason for this - as temperatures begin to rise, our toads move from their overwintering sites and make their way to their annual breeding ground – our lake!

Toads have a very strong migratory instinct and once they’ve found their ideal breeding ground, they will travel the same route to reach it, year after year! 

The lake didn’t exist before Bluestone was built - so it’s very flattering that so many toads have chosen our beautiful lake to start their little amphibian families, and we’re delighted to have successfully created this special safe haven for wildlife on our resort.

Wildlife wellbeing is extremely important to us at Bluestone and we’re always happy to offer a helping hand when it’s needed – that’s why we’ve created the Bluestone Toad Patrol!

Lake

Calling all Toad Patrollers

Sadly the Green Cross Toad isn’t taught at Toad School, and their instinctive migratory journey often means they’ll cross busy roads and walkways which means they’re in danger of being accidently squished! No need to worry though - we Toad Patrollers are on hand to help and we’d love for you to join our toad rescuing team during your stay.

From February through early spring, our Entertainments Team will be hosting pop-up Toad Patrol events, where guests will have the chance to become wildlife superheroes! Guided by our team; they’ll carefully move our thankful toads to safety and have lots of Free Range Fun while doing it. There will even be a certificate for little helpers at the end, so they can show their friends what they’ve been up to when they get home.

The total number of toads rescued will be collected by our team and this information will help our Environmental Team to monitor future toad activity on the resort. 

 

Independent Toad Patrols

Toad migration can be tricky to predict as they’re very fussy about the weather. As temperatures rise upward of 5°C, toads tend to start to appear. However if temperatures then fall, they’ll usually find a warm damp place to snuggle away in until conditions are suitable again. 

Their unpredictable behaviour means there may not always be a pop-up session running when you spot a toad that needs assistance... So how about it, can you follow these instructions and be a Bluestone Toad Patroller?

If you see a toad in a dangerous place and you are concerned that it will cross a road or busy footpath:

  • Collect a bucket from outside Ranger HQ.
  • Pick the toad up around its belly and gently place it into the bucket. If you find a few toads, you can place more than one into the bucket at one time - but please make sure that they aren’t piled on top of one another.
  • Transport the toads to the far side of the lake (opposite Ranger HQ), and place the toads on the grass nearest the lake.
  • Return the bucket for other Toad Patrollers to use.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly. (We know what you’re thinking and no, toads won’t give you warts, despite popular myths!)

Toadlet Time

Early summer is when we’ll start to see toadlets appear around the resort. They’re pretty hard to miss as they’re usually in their hundreds!

Once the tadpoles have grown into toadlets, they’ll start to migrate away from the lake and our toad patrol work will continue. Once again, we’ll be asking guests to get involved by moving our toadlets to safety, onto grassy or woodland areas, away from any busy roads or footpaths.

All being well, our guests will be able to spot their toadlets again next year when they return to the lake to restart the toad lifecycle. 


Fantastic Toad Facts

  • The common toad has a lifespan of 10-12 years.
  • Toads do not live in water and will only travel to it to breed. 
  • Toads like to live in warm damp places such as under a rock or perhaps an empty watering can in your garden! 
  • Toads will let out a screaming noise if threatened.
  • Female toads are larger than the males.
  • Toads croak to attract a mate.


Categories:Activities, Children, Environment, Events and Whats On, Family, News, Spring

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