28 January 2011

Get crafty and help Froglife make some toads!

Froglife are once again taking part in National Science and Engineering Week and we would like to invite you to a fun day of making and creating weird and wonderful items on Saturday 5th February at the Froglife office in Peterborough.

NSEW is a national scheme that helps to promote science in a fun and educative way. Last year Froglife received the Best Science Event award for our “Under the Surface” exhibition. This year we are communicating the “Toads on Roads” message to people in Peterborough’s city centre from the 16th – 19th March 2011. We will be taking over the GuIldhall with an interesting and exciting exhibit featuring a toad lollipop lady and interactive fun for people of all ages to learn about toads and the threats they face.

Conservation Youth Worker Cacey is organising the event, and recruiting some helpers for the 5th February. “We are inviting people to come and help us make all the things we will need for the display in March,” explains Cacey. “The day will include papier mache, painting, creating signs, sewing ... lots of hands on help to make giant toads and other props!”

If you are interested in lending a much appreciated hand, the event will be held at the Froglife offices starting at 11am and finishing around 2.30pm. If you fancy some messy, crafty fun, please contact Cacey for further details and to confirm attendance:

Email: cacey.barks@froglife.org
Tel: 01733 425826
Mobile: 07581 466073

You can find out more about Froglife’s educational work here.

26 January 2011

Mike Dilger names ‘Widdy’ and ‘Wigbert’ – our two toad campaigners!

BBC natural history presenter and toad fan Mike Dilger has chosen the winning names in our ‘name the toads competition’. Widdy, named after Anne Widdecombe, and Wigbert will be helping Froglife raise the profile of the plight of toads and their incredible life cycle.

Georgette Taylor from Cambridgeshire suggested Wigbert as her favourite name and Melenie Francis from Hampshire picked Widdy “Because Widdy is rounded, bold, and fearless (like Anne Widdecombe in 'Strictly') and she keeps coming back!” The winners will be receiving some wildlife goodies in a fabulous Froglife bag!

As the weather starts to get warmer and wetter, we are fast approaching the time when toads will be heading back to their ancestral breeding ponds to lay their long strands of spawn. The mild weather has already brought out some toads in the South West of England, even though it’s only January; it’s more common to see them around February and March.

Toads like Widdy and Wigbert will go back to the same ponds year after year, no matter what is in their way, including roads. It’s estimated that around 20 tonnes of toads are killed on our roads every year. However, hard working Toad Patrollers up and down the country will be getting ready to go out on damp evenings and help the toads make it to safety. Volunteers rescued over 70,000 toads in 2010 alone!

Our Tuppence a Toad campaign aims to collect small change to make a big difference to these golden-eyed amphibians, and support to the Toad Patrollers. There are all sorts of ways you can get involved to help Wigbert, Widdy and their friends! Find out more here.