Monday, 17 December 2012

Late-night Frogging on Hampstead Heath

Tonight, I'm going late-night Frogging on Hampstead Heath. 

Frogging is a celebrated British past-time, remembered fondly by countless generations.  Frogging is a term used to describe the activity of looking for rare frogs and toads, in a semi-secluded place (such as a car-park, wooded layby or picnic site), late at night, with other strangers, who are collectively known as froggers.  

Frogs are shy, short-bodied, tail-less amphibians that predominantly come out at night.   This explains why froggers only go out frogging late at night.  It's pointless going frogging during daylight hours as the frogs are asleep under a lily pad.

Here are some startling tit-bits to get your juices flowing (down your leg):  

  • The only saviour of the common frog and toad has been the increase in the number of frogging locations, which provide an alternative to lost wildlife habitats.   
  • Frogs have moist smooth skin, greenish brown to yellow in colour, with a distinctive brown patch behind the eye. 
  • Toads have drier bumpier skin, which is often brownish.
  • When swallowing a big mouthful of food, frogs and toads blink their eyes. The blinking pushes their huge eyeballs down on top of their mouths. This helps squeeze the food in the mouth into the throat. Whoosh! Down goes the meal!  
  • Last little factoid on the list: Kermit was a frog who liked sex with pigs.

Aren't they dainty little things?

Often frogging participants meet randomly, although with the proliferation of the Internet, frogging meetings can be pre-arranged.

My friend, Helga, a veteran frogger, sent me some pictures of when she went frogging last week.  I must admit it's difficult to make out these photographs, she clearly doesn't have a very good camera, and I haven't got my glasses on:

Can you spot a frog anywhere in this picture?  I can't!

Couldn't quite make this set of photos out;
not really sure what these photos are supposed to be!

 Sorry, the photo is too poor quality for me to make out what's going on here.

   We'll never know what this photo is supposed to be.

Helga said she often meets a man whilst frogging called Dick.  
She says Dick loves to park his purple Porsche in her personal parking place.  

Helga enlightens me that there is often a particular social etiquette involved in frogging, using the flashing of car headlights to indicate some sort of unspoken message to other froggers.  It's forbidden to speak because any noise, however small, will scare off the frogs. I'm still not sure how this works.  Maybe I misunderstood her?  I think if you flash your headlights twice, it means you've spotted a rare frog.  Putting on the rear brake light means you've found a toad; putting the fog light on means it's something extraordinary, like an Amazonian bullfrog.  Turning your interior light on and off means you're a lesbian.

It is rather complicated, isn't it? I would hate to get it wrong and send out an unsavoury message during my nocturnal pursuits.  I'll let you know how my night of frogging goes.  

I'm dressed in a waterproof jacket, a thick lambs-wool jumper, wellington boots, scarf and fur hat, and I have purchased these delightful knitted frog mittens just for the occasion (although, surprisingly, Helga tells me she usually wears just a tiny, black leather skirt and blood-red, 12" stilettos when she goes frogging; an outfit that hardly strikes me as appropriate under the circumstances)

I've got a flask of hot tea as it's going to be fairly cold tonight, as well as a Collins Encyclopaedia of Frogs, Toads and Aquatic Amphibia, a lamenated A-to-Z Frog and Toad Flip-Chart Identifier and my trusty frog net:


I read an article saying that a rare Guatemalan hissing bull-frog was spotted in the large car park just behind Jack Straw's Castle where the path descends into the dense gloom of the West Heath.  Fingers crossed we find it tonight!

It is a little known fact that in other parts of London, people go out looking for rare, reclusive Wombles late at night on Clapham Common.  Or is it Wimbledon Common?  I'm not sure either...

If you don't live anywhere near Hampstead Heath, there are literally hundreds of frogging locations up and down the length and breadth of the United States of England, all apparently listed on frog appreciation websites like

I just hope I don't end up turning into a frogophiliac or a frogophile after tonight.  Toodle pip!


  1. It's called dogging!! LOL x

    1. Why is it called dogging? We didn't go looking for dogs. We were looking for frogs. What is dogging, exactly? Fanny x

  2. I've been meaning to say Hi! to you Fanny. I've set up a blog about cruising for gay sex. My good friend, LADY VAGINA, is often up Hampstead Heath. Unlike you, she's not looking for frogs and toads though, she's walking up and down the woodland paths in her Primark high heels and reptilian leather cat-suit, looking for men. You will soon be able to read about all my sexual exploits on this new blog-site of mine:

    I hope you will call by.

    Ambrosia Strangelove

    1. Ambrosia, please take your medication. All of it. Fanny x