Photograph of a ramshorn snail and two baby newts in a pond dipping tray

Pondwatch Episode 6: Summer in the Pond

Roz Wade, Learning Officer at the Museum, writes:

The garden pond has been thriving over the summer, and I have loved watching the wildlife it is supporting.

Since the last episode of Pondwatch I have been pond dipping several times, and found some beautiful animals living in the water. It is wonderful to see so many baby newts, from tiny, almost transparent ones without any legs, to much larger ones crawling across the bottom of my pond dipping tray, their pink frilly gills like a lacy collar behind their heads.

There are other babies in the water, particularly damselfly, dragonfly and mayfly nymphs. All look dwarfed by the ramshorn snails.

Above the water, I have been treated to the balletic dance of mating damselflies, and the camera trap has captured many different species of bird coming to take a drink, a bath, or even find food. If you want to do something for wildlife in your back garden, you can’t get much better than having a pond.

Want to see more of the newts and how best to see them? Check out Pondwatch Episode 3 where you can see my first glimpse of these wonderful amphibians this year, and in Pondwatch Episode 4 their courtship behaviour is on show. Pondwatch Episode 5 shows more of the behaviour of the adult newts, and my first baby newts this year. You can also found out about pond dipping in Pondwatch Episode 2, and find out about ramshorn snails and tadpoles in Pondwatch Episode 1. Want to know how to create a pond for a small space? We have a handy how-to guide.

What have you seen in your garden or from your window this week? Have you spotted any amphibians or had a go at pond dipping? Share your sightings or Crafty Creature makes with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram by tagging us or using #OpenYourWindowBingo and you could feature in our community gallery!

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