Kind of ugly, but interesting

Our backyard pond started attracting frogs several years ago and we saw quite a few pollywogs,but very few turned into frogs. A bit of research and a serendipitous encounter revealed that the developing tadpoles need protein or they’ll cannibalize one another. A few years ago we started putting fish heads and/or halibut collars from our local fish market in the pond and this is the result.

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Canon 20D with 18-55 kit lens and polarizer (I use this one for some seashore volunteer work) @ 55 mm, hand held, f/11, 1/50, iso 800, aperture priority, pattern metering. Processed in LR & PS CC. Mostly some dehazing adjustments and cleaning up some grass clippings from the water. Taken this morning at 7:12 am.

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Speaking as someone who sees salmon carcasses by the thousands along local waterways each fall, and recognizing their value in the local nutrient cycle, I’m charmed by this and don’t find it ugly at all. In fact, from my viewpoint the tadpoles add particular interest. The breakdown of local carcasses to nutrients is not so overt here, so we don’t get to see it so clearly at work. And I never knew that tadpoles could cannibalize, so it’s instructive too.

It’s a difficult subject to present tastefully, as significant as it is in the natural cycle. But I think you’ve done it very well. Not an image for walls, but an effective and welcome addition to instructional media, for sure.

Neat shot, Dennis. It took me a bit to realize what the tadpoles were eating… That adds to the neat factor. The grass reflections at the top are a nice addition as well. This one tells quite a story.