It rained a lot during the March school holidays. Not good for a household full of young, hyperactive, on-the-go lads. They were bouncing off the walls and generally tearing the house apart.
But there was a wonderful silver lining. When the sky cleared, we brought the boys cycling along Sentosa beach (one of the Pilgrim family’s favourite hangouts). And at Tanjong Beach, we discovered that the tree-covered grassy patch next to the carpark had become waterlogged, and was now home to hundreds and hundreds of tadpoles.
I’m a little embarrassed to admit that in my 30-something years, I don’t remember ever seeing a tadpole. Sad testimony to the highly urbanised environment in which I’ve lived most of my life.
The boys had a good chuckle watching Pilgrim Dad try to catch them with his bare hands. We managed a couple, which we put in our water bottle and brought home.
The next day, the boys said they wanted to catch tadpoles again. So we went back with nets and plastic containers, and had a great time catching them. Even Aramis, not yet two years old, was able to net quite a few.
We are now the proud stewards of 24 (I think) tadpoles, which we are hoping to see through to maturity. The Pilgrim boys have been learning how to take care of their new charges. Athos did some research online to figure out what we needed: fresh rainwater (chemicals in tap water might be dangerous), rocks and leaves to hide under (they are very shy), and goldfish flakes to eat (all three boys want a turn at feeding so the tadpoles are getting a little fat, in my opinion…).
I’ll try to keep this blog updated on their progress. Meanwhile, if anyone has any advice on what to feed them when they are a little older, please let me know. Goldfish food is only good for the tadpole stage, apparently.
UPDATE on 14 May 2008 – We went back to Tanjong Beach recently. The path from the carpark to the beach has been paved and landscaped! Good on Sentosa, but I can’t help feeling sad that our temporary tadpole farm is gone….
The waterlogged ground next to the Tanjong Beach carpark
One of the tadpoles Pilgrim Dad caught
Porthos positioning a stone in our makeshift tadpole aquarium. The bits on the top are goldfish flakes, which are good tadpole food.