Spring comes slow to northern Minnesota - this year it seems exceptionally slow, perhaps due to the super early spring of 2010. Although the robins and cardinals are singing in my yard, we will be waiting a few more weeks before the frogs start to call.
I visited some ponds located within city limits today - still frozen and snow covered (see below).
Quite a difference from this time last year, when the ponds were open and the wood frogs had already laid their eggs! On April 7, 2010 this same location looked something like this:
While we wait for the ponds and lakes to open up, all we can do is practice our amphibian ID skills. The first frog to call and breed in this region is the wood frog (Rana sylvatica). I recommend the Online ID Guide from Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center for great pictures and maps, and the Amphibians of Reptiles of Minnesota for detailed descriptions and calls.