In mid-western Oklahoma I remember playing in swimming holes at the start of summer. These rain collection holding ponds gathered run off from the dry land and held it through the hot months so water would be available to livestock in the area. They also hosted an abundance of wildlife from deer, armadillo, and turkey, to any number of birds, reptiles, and amphibians. Those ponds are gone now, have been for over a decade. There’s been a drought in Oklahoma, most of the mid west, for a long time. I remember catching frogs and seeing snakes, horned toads, and lots of birds around. I’ve not seen a horned toad in the wild since I was 9. At 30, I wish it would rain more back home to fill up the ponds again. Maybe the horned toads would come back if we used less chemical in our agricultural pesticides. I’m still wondering why they left. Those lizards spoke to me. We spent a lot of time together in the tall grass and wandering sand dunes of Caddo County. Box Turtle stayed the longest, his kind would come to the top of our hill in the spring to find each other. I think they would meet there cuz our hill was the highest in the area and they could all see it from the nearby valleys. What a place to advertise!
by Liz Crain