Saturday, September 21, 2013

Training Otto

Last week, when Dennis and Debbie were here, we were out by the backyard pond watching the fish begging for food. Dennis went out in the front pasture, caught a little grasshopper, brought it back and tossed it in the water.

The grasshopper thrashed around a bit, a couple of fish came up and nibbled but backed off. Just as the grasshopper was swimming for a lily pad, "THHUPP!" No grasshopper, Otto had spied him and decided to have lunch.

That was so much fun, Dennis went back for more grasshoppers, I gave him my small fish net and it worked pretty good. Finding grasshoppers is labor intensive, get one, come back and feed Otto and go back after another.

After they left I decided I needed to have a better method of gathering grasshoppers so rummaged around in my 'too good to throw out' box of things and found a net bag. YIPPEE!! This is what you need if you are going to gather grasshoppers, the glove is a must because they have really creepy, sticky legs and one even bit me, that creeped me out so bad I screamed like a little girl and tossed the grasshopper into the air, kind of defeating the purpose.

I forgot to see if Otto was visible after my first grasshopper foray, he wasn't around so I tossed some to the fish and a big goldfish nibbled on it, then, to my surprise, gulped it down.
The fish went to the bottom of the pond and worked on the grasshopper for awhile, I don't think those sticky legs went down all that easy.
I kept checking the pond and finally saw Otto, with just his head sticking out of the water so grabbed my bag of grasshoppers. It's not an easy job, placing them just right with all the foliage in the pond so Otto can see them, the first one I bounced off his face. He flinched but didn't leave, I took that as a good sign.
We went to the Spencer Fair last week and took in a Big Cat Show. The trainer said all the cats are taught with positive reinforcement, in other word, treats. I decided if a big cat can learn how to jump through a hoop, Otto should be able to learn to come to me when I call.
So I'm standing on the side of the pond calling, "Otto, Grasshoppers! YUM!"
 I carefully took aim and tossed the grasshopper about 6 inches from his nose.
It was a perfect shot, Otto spotted him!
In a flash he was across the water and slurped up the grasshopper!

All the while I'm saying, "Otto! Grasshopper!!"

And I'm really hoping no one is around to hear me.

Do you think a frog can learn to come?
Think there is an app for that?
Maybe I'll google it and see if anyone has ever successfully trained a frog.


No comments:

Post a Comment