On August 20, 2016 by daddyohunts

Reese is excited about his new friend Spotty

When I was younger I remember combing the landscape, woods, and swamps that surrounded our house just outside of Benson, MN in search of any reasonable subject that could inhabit the plastic pool sitting in our yard.  I still remember the astonished looks my dad used to give me when I showed him my daily catch, consisting of toads, frogs and salamanders.  From sun up to sun down, I worked tirelessly to fill that pool.  I didn’t need toys or video games, I only needed my forts in the woods, the fields, and the flooded low areas to pass the time.

Last week we were at our neighbor’s house and their little girl was playing around with a little toad she had caught.  Reese, of course, thought that was pretty cool and immediately started searching for more.  My neighbor even gave us a little insider information about the “big” toad he had seen while mowing down by the culvert in the front of their yard.  Reese made a mad dash down there with me right on his heels.  No such luck!  He was a little disappointed, but I told him that we needed to wait until evening when the frogs and toads would come out to feed.  He patiently waited through supper and the adult conversations that he cared nothing about.  However, soon it was dark and he was pulling at my pant leg to go frog hunting.  I hadn’t yet replaced the batteries in my headlamps so with the light from my phone Reese and I set out for the culvert.  We were in luck!  As I shined the light into the first culvert, Reese and I immediately caught a glimpse of the sheen emanating off of the leopard frogs back.  Like a flash, bringing back memories from my glory days, my hand swept down engulfing the unsuspecting amphibian.  I think Reese had a name for him before I could even fully turn to show him!  I knew then that getting Reese to release “Spotty” was going to be a challenge.


Reese making a little pond for Spotty

Brinley is checking in on Reese and Spotty

We have only been in our new house on the river for about four months, but I feel like my kids have now had many years worth of experiences and adventures.  Ones that I know they would never have if we hadn’t moved out of the city.  Reese may be too young to hunt deer and turkeys, but there is always something to hunt and now there is always opportunity.  In a week’s time, our window well went from inhabiting Spotty to now providing a home to another really big leopard frog and three toads.  He has had some pretty successful hunts and is still currently working on more names.  His nightly frog hunts have now turned into cricket hunts as he seeks to help fatten up his new friends for the winter.  Even though he will be sad to release them back into the wild at the end of the summer, I know that the hunt runs through his veins and the opportunity will always exist through the changing seasons.

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