The Thin Green Line by
(311 Stories)

Prompted By Recycling

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Although it can be time-consuming and a hassle,  I conscientiously recycle and I try to support organizations and legislation that advocate for environmental action to fight pollution and clean up the planet.

I’ve been haunted by images of polar bears on melting ice caps;   and dead whales washing up on beaches with stomachs full of plastic;   endangered Monarch butterflies;  and collapsing bee colonies.    And awhile ago I watched a show called The Thin Green Line on the PBS series Nature,  and found out that frogs are in trouble too.

It seems frog populations all around the world are dying out as we humans encroach on their natural habitats,  continue to pollute,  and contribute to the climate change that’s throwing the earth’s ecosystems out of whack.

Frogs are at the center of the food chain I learned,  and their disappearance would have a devastating affect on other species as well.  Frogs are also vitally important to current medical research as chemical compounds in their skin have been found to help mitigate pain,  block infection,  and may be used to treat other human diseases.

On the show we met an international team of amazingly dedicated animal scientists working to save these frogs from extinction,  the die-off is as serious as that.  And adding to the disaster is a newly identified amphibian fungus deadly to frogs.  As this infection spreads,  the scientist work against the clock to eradicate this threat,  even hoping to breed a new generation of frogs who are resistant to it.

I’ve written about the childhood summers I spent at my grandmother’s Catskill hotel.   (See My Heart Remembers My Grandmother’s Hotel,  The Troubadour)

There as a kid I caught dozens of frogs in the lake,  and would amuse myself by singing aloud to them,   “Lucky froggies in the pool,  You don’t have to go to school!”

It was innocent fun then,  but those frogs need our help now.  So my friends,  please recycle and do everything else you can to turn the tide,   there is no Planet B.

– Dana Susan Lehrman

Profile photo of Dana Susan Lehrman Dana Susan Lehrman
This retired librarian loves big city bustle and cozy country weekends, friends and family, good books and theatre, movies and jazz, travel, tennis, Yankee baseball, and writing about life as she sees it on her blog World Thru Brown Eyes!

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Tags: Pollution, Frogs, Environment


  1. Betsy Pfau says:

    Excellent, heart-felt story, Dana, loaded with good information and a great plea at the end. Share it widely.

  2. John Shutkin says:

    I just want to second everything Betsy said. A great story, and also good information. And, of course, the message is spot on. Thank you, Dana!

  3. Marian says:

    Kudos, Dana. We are missing the sounds of frogs, song birds, and other creatures. I don’t know if our grandchildren will recognize the world in its beauty and variety. How sad …

  4. Good story, Dana. Not to worry; we have a gazillion healthy frogs in our neck of the woods. For now.

  5. Suzy says:

    Thanks for this information about frogs, Dana. Hope that the recycling I am doing every week is somehow helping them survive.

  6. Khati Hendry says:

    Amphibians and bees are both creatures that are critical to to planetary health, and often people are unaware of how tenuous their existence is. For more angst and deep sorrow, read “The Sixth Extinction” by Elizabeth Kolbert. For some hope, check out Project Drawdown (Paul Hawkins). Recycling is just one of the changes we need to make. Thanks for the heartfelt discussion of the frogs.

    • Thanx for your info too Khati, I’ll try to read the hopeful book!

      The heartbreaking images of endangered and damaged animals are painful to see, and much could have been prevented had we listened to the scientists as I know you’ll agree!

  7. Laurie Levy says:

    So true, Dana. When I was a kid, there were frogs all over the place. I haven’t seen one on ages. Thanks for the good/bad info about that.

  8. Beautiful, Dana. You caught a profound reality we all share in this post — our sadness that our planet is dying back. It will survive this crisis, but will the precious balance, beauty, and intimacy of our world? I think this makes us sad.

  9. Much as I’d love to drop this on the Drumpf, this plight has been a long time in the very energetic and persistent making.

    • You’re right of course Charles, the planetary travesty has been long time in the making, years of greed and ignorance too perhaps and deaf ears to the scientists and their inconvenient truths, but Trump and his EPA team surely didn’t help.
      Here’s to better times!

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