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Tadpole Domination!
#506391 05/23/19 04:45 PM
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Thank to these crazy thunderstorms in KS my 1 acre pond is full and looking great! I have began stocking FHM and hope for some great spawning before moving forward with a Walleye/Wiper stocking strategy. Finally to my question on the Tadpole subject; I have so many baby Tadpoles in my shallows that I could not dream of counting them - they blacken my shoreline! Are these a concern? The only fish in the pond are FHMs and I am concerned these Tadpoles might be competing against the FHMs. Thoughts? Any help is greatly appreciated!

Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506392 05/23/19 05:11 PM
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I believe Tadpoles are a plant/algea eater in the early stages, maybe some larval insects just before they morf… not really sure about that.
I would be concerned about Tiger salamanders more than tadpoles. Mother nature brings the salamanders out when the storms come and they will lay eggs in water that was not there-yesterday. Larvel waterdogs are mean and aggressive and will wreak havoc on FHM early introductions.
My Brother in law built a pond just north of Wichita and found out how quick Tigers show up. We had to stock a Dozen CC to contain the waterdogs first.

Last edited by Snipe; 05/23/19 05:13 PM.

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Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506394 05/23/19 06:06 PM
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Haven't seen salamanders or lizards - doesn't mean they are not there though. Great information to have and I will continue to monitor closely.

Does anything eat these little tadpoles? I will go out and take a picture to post later this evening.

Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506396 05/23/19 08:15 PM
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If they are black and about a half inch long, they are probably toad tadpoles. Nothing to worry about. Unlike bullfrog tadpoles, that can take 2 years to develop into frogs, the "toadpoles" develop relatively quickly. They seem to turn into toads nearly all at the same time. It is pretty cool when they do as the shore of your pond will be covered with tiny toads as they head out to eat mosquitos and other pests.

Last edited by Bill D.; 05/23/19 08:38 PM. Reason: Because Pat asked me to!


You'll never know what ya can catch unless you wet a line!
Re: Tadpole Domination!
Bill D. #506398 05/23/19 08:23 PM
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Bill never heard of a bullhead tadpole.... new breed?

Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506399 05/23/19 08:37 PM
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Dang it Pat! You been around Bob O too long and got picky in yer old age! I shall correct the post to Bullfrog! smile



You'll never know what ya can catch unless you wet a line!
Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506403 05/23/19 09:03 PM
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I had a plethora of little black 'poles last year. They couldnt have been more than 3/8" long. I think they were rain frogs. Regardless, the entire pond's shallows were covered with them on one evening, the next morning they were almost all gone. BG absolutely decimated them overnight.


.10 surface acre pond, 10.5 foot deep. SW LA. The epitome of a mutt pond. BG, LMB, GSF, RES, BH, Warmouth, Longear Sunfish, Gambusia,Mud Minnows, Crappie, and now shiners!!...I subscribe!!
Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506404 05/23/19 09:10 PM
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Very likely they are tiny young of the American Toad. I love their life cycle. We hear their thrilling songs for a few days, then out of all sides of the woods around us they come by the hundreds. The water is thrashing wildly in the shallows as the males and females chase each other. Then there is mating and egg laying, an enormously long string of eggs from each female. Just like that the singing stops and overnight all the adults are gone, back into the woods.

Then after a few days there are millions of black specs and then toad 'poles'. I've been watching ours for the past week, they are growing every day and becoming stronger swimmers all the time. In another week or 10 days they will all be hopping in the grass furiously trying to get back into the woods before they get picked off by birds.

We have been privileged to watch this exact scene play out at the same time after ice out for the last 6 springs in a row at our tiny little pond.



See this great web page with pictures of their lifecycle.

American Toad life with pictures

Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506405 05/23/19 09:13 PM
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I do know that "toadpoles" are rarely eating by fish but "frogpoles" are readily consumed.. In their adult phase this seems to follow suit as well.


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Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506415 05/24/19 06:52 AM
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That must be what I had in my new pond, about half full of water I had millions of these little black tadpoles appear seemingly over night, they are growing fast tho and some are sprouting legs. I was wondering if fish wouldn't eat them but of course I don't have any fish in my pond yet so they are surviving just great.


All the really good ideas I've ever had came to me while I was milking a cow.
Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506431 05/24/19 10:09 AM
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I have never seen any fish eat them, nor a heron, or frog or anything else. They seem to move around like a frenzied black swimming mass back and forth in the shallows. But once they get on land only a small percentage survive.

Re: Tadpole Domination!
canyoncreek #506433 05/24/19 10:15 AM
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The shallow water in my pond is loaded with toadpoles. Thousands of them. Those things outnumber the frogpoles probably 100:1

Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506484 05/25/19 08:28 AM
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Good job Pat, stay on Bills case. Bill, makin up anoyin Illinois names will be chastized !!! My grandpa always said let sleeping dogs lie. This ol dog won't give ya grief if ya quite pickin on me.


Do nature a favor, spay/neuter your pets and any weird friends or relatives.
Re: Tadpole Domination!
canyoncreek #506488 05/25/19 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted By: canyoncreek
I have never seen any fish eat them, nor a heron, or frog or anything else. They seem to move around like a frenzied black swimming mass back and forth in the shallows. But once they get on land only a small percentage survive.


The only thing I have seen eat them is after they have legs and start hopping about the shore line the birds pick them off quite quick.

The other thing is once the coyotes found out we had toads in the spring around out pond they cleaned them right up. We have not had one toad tad pole after the coyotes figured out they were and easy snack.


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7/8th of an acre, Perch only pond, Ontario, Canada.
Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506490 05/25/19 12:36 PM
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Six inches of rain yesterday with more scheduled for this evening and all next week. Been a crazy, wet spring in the Wichita, KS area!

I was out doing a little yard/garden maintenance today and was able to take a couple pictures. Interested if anyone wants to identify these guys if possible...

Attached Files
tadpole 1.jpg (1.35 MB, 109 downloads)
tadpole 2.jpg (790.22 KB, 96 downloads)
Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506659 05/30/19 10:05 AM
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Here's my anecdote on tadpoles, and in my case, bullfrog tadpoles. I was under the impression fish didn't eat them, because we had thousands and thousands of them in our pond when we bought our place in 2015. Same thing for next two years. I did a little Googling and even came across articles/opinions saying that bullfrog tadpoles had a toxin of some sort in their skin, so fish didn't like them. Seemed to jive with what I was seeing. THEN, I stocked 5-7 inch LMB in the fall of 2017. I recall having this same discussion with Nate Herman when he was helping shock survey the pond. He noted we had a gazillion bullfrogs and tadpoles, and said the bass will 'love those'. I told him the above. He said 'just wait and see, I bet they clean them out'. Well, I owe the man a beer, because the main pond is almost frog and tadpole free. And the LMB are fat and sassy. At least fat, not sure on the sassy. Most are pretty decent folk, if you handle them carefully...
Just what happened here at my water hole, not saying it's the universal truth. The LMB in south central Iowa eat bullfrog tadpoles like fat kids eat twix.


Better to shun the bait than struggle in the snare.
- William Blake
Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506665 05/30/19 11:32 AM
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I was waiting for someone to say LM Bass eat them.
After introducing LMB to a heavy Bluegill/BF tadpole pond last year, it seems like the insane numbers of tadpoles are much much better! The only ones left don't dare to venture out more than an inch from land.

Not sure if your Wipers would do the same though.

Re: Tadpole Domination!
KW35 #506669 05/30/19 12:46 PM
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Interesting. I’ve got SMB, and maybe some HSB, along with YP and HBG. Nothing will touch my tadpoles. There’s been several times where we found them on the dock. They look like they’ve been spit out. My guess was the kingfisher hit them, then spit them out. There’s times when it looks like it’s sprinkling with all the tadpoles coming up to breathe. I will say, once they grow legs, they are gone. Either migrate out, or are picked off by the GBH or the pair of green herons that work the bank.


5 yr old pond, 1 ac, 15' deep.
RES, YP, GS, FHM (no longer), HBG (way too many), SMB, and HSB (rumored..)
I think that's about all I should put in my little pond.

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