Definition #1 Bullfrogs on the pad: They are the largest of our North American frogs and they eat anything that fits in their mouths. These voraicous and mostly nocturnal night hunters are superb predators and for them life on their pad is often easy. They spent the last few warm days of the season hanging out on their pads, soaking in the sun and waiting for something to ambush for dinner. (The bullfrog in the photo was at the Holly State Recreation Area) Sometimes however their wait, leap, gulp and swallow plan fails miserably and a fat northern water snake, a raccoon, heron or human has them for dinner. And as days cool they abandon their beloved pads, slip back into the deep and before Halloween will be in a hibernation like state.
Definition #2 Bullfrogs Bar and Grill: It's a lively and casual restaurant on M-15 just a few miles south of the Village of Ortonville on the western shore of Lake Lousie. And it was from their busy pad (the outside deck for the patrons) on warm summer days where I scribbled notes for the majority of my Earth's Almanac blogs and many of the Sunday hiking columns for the Oakland Press. But with that season ending, so will my time at the pad of Bullfrogs. And so on the last Saturday of this month I paid a visit to the Bullfrog's tasting booth in downtown Ortonville during the Septemberfest Event. I sampled the ribs I know well and convinced waitperson Lynsey to pose for my salute to the bullfrogs. Two pads. Two clients. And another season of life on the pad for both is about to end.