It rained yesterday. It hasn't done much raining here for some weeks. In fact, it's been remarkably summery, the level of the stream in the park has been very low, and the levels of the two ponds dropping.
Which isn't good if you're a tadpole in the pond, because there's no connection to the stream. In fact, I was starting to wonder whether the tadpoles were going to manage to grow legs before they ran out of water and died.
So I was quite surprised yesterday to discover the stream had flooded, after just a few hours' rain. In fact, it was about 3" off the highest level I've seen it*. Now the level of the ponds are back to that of a month ago, so 500 or more tadpoles can sleep soundly once more. Although the downside is that I'm unlikely to repeat a rather strange sight - something that at first looked like a black flag, roughly 1 foot square, waving in the breeze, but was actually a near solid mass of about 300 tadpoles feeding on weed in very shallow water.
* since the "naturalisation" works. The highest I've seen it is only 2¾ out of 3 on the breeze block scale**, whereas I some years ago I remember seeing it about 3¼ out of 3. And my father has met it a few times somewhere around 4 - i.e. it's got so deep that it's also flowing along the pat through the foot tunnel, so he's had to get his feet wet. I hope to see this some day.
** about 15 years ago they rebuilt the channel on the other side of the railway, and built a short section out of breeze blocks, 3 high, to funnel it into the culvert under the railway. It's a good place to make an absolute, quantitative, estimate of the flow.