The sun is shining, a cool breeze starts to blow in the comfortable early evening air, and you’re enjoying a delicious cool beverage in your backyard with your family when all of a sudden, you’re inundated with those peskiest of garden pests – flies. They buzz right in your ears and land on your food sending your happy family back inside, seeking refuge from the annoyance. If only there were a simple, eco-friendly solution that would keep the flies to a minimum, allowing you to enjoy your yard to the maximum. Oh, wait! There is! Enter the toad.
These guardians of the garden may be a bit funky, with their squat bodies and their throaty-sounding songs but deep down, these charismatic creatures are the solution you’ve been searching for. They naturally want to eat the destructive pests who love to wreak havoc in your yard – flies and worms.
San Joaquin County is home to a number of species of toads including the Western Toad, and the California Toad. These beneficial buddies are wonderful garden guests to have as they help to protect your yard and garden. Here are a couple of ways you can help attract and protect these toad-ally awesome amphibians.
Show love with shelter
If you want to make your garden into a toad’s paradise, place a bowl, pot, or dish in a nice shady spot where the toad can take shelter from cats, dogs, and other natural predators or simply take a snooze in the shade. Any opaque or clay object will do, as long as it’s in a safe spot where the toad can squeeze in and feel safe.
Water is wonderful
As they are amphibians, toads tend to prefer places where water is plentiful. They’ll adore a shallow supply of fresh water, so if you can, put a small dish of water somewhere that is accessible where the toads can hop in and out.
Once you attract toads, they are likely to stay. Toads live for a few years, so as long as you keep your garden toad-friendly, they’ll be happy to hang around and eat all the juicy flies and worms who would otherwise be bugging you.