Amphibian Massacre

Let's do a little game. You have to guess what is depicted in the following photograph:

dead amphibians

Definitely one of the most revolting things I have had to do in my life so far. The story...

Not long ago I moved to a new house. The house has a garden and the garden had a tiny fish pond, with no fish in it. The pond was not my idea; the previous owner probably thought it was a good idea. Anyway, this year's winter was relatively cold one, compared to the previous ten winters. Much of the country froze during the Christmas holidays. So did the pond. It froze solid, as it was only slightly smaller than the average bath tub. This was two months ago.

Today, being very sunny and warm, I decided the pond had to go. So I set off to empty it. I removed the plants that covered it and lifted the grating covering the pond. It was at this point I noticed something just under the stinky, green water's surface. In a corner of the pond, just slightly covered by a bush, there was a gray mass of... something. Immediately I felt a bit sick, because it very much looked like a drowned animal-ish thing. I hate dead things, especially if already decomposing.

I grabbed a stick and poked the gray blob. As it moved, two more grayish blobs bobbed upwards. It didn't take very long to identify these disgusting, swollen objects as dead frogs and toads. I ended up pulling a total of seven bloated dead amphibians from the pond. Before undertaking this I fetched a pair of safety glasses. A few of the frogs were so intensely swollen that I was sure they would burst in my face at the slightest touch. Luckily for me, none of them did, although one frog was so far gone that it had already popped open. The smell was beyond belief. Sickly thick in your throat is the closest I can get to describing the experience. The only thing slightly camouflaging the smell of rotting frog was the decaying plant material in the pond. I tell you, I came very close to losing my lunch.

After having dropped all seven corpses in a plastic bag, I decided to make the picture you can see here, so I would at least have something of an enjoyable experience from this by nauseating my friends with the story. So there you have it.

A little epilouge to this tale of sadness: The frogs and toads were all found in one corner of the pond. They were hibernating in the pond, coming up for air now and then. When the pond froze over, the amount of air holes eventually reduced to one, and then zero. They were all at the last air hole, fighting for a breath of air. And as the final hole froze over, they all... croaked. Pretty horrific story.