“Partly cloudy tomorrow, with a high of 59 degrees; 70 percent chance of amphibians.” Some people in Japan probably wish they’d heard that forecast from their TV weatherman not long ago, so they could have been better prepared.

Then again, it would have spoiled the surprise, wouldn’t it?


And surprise it was—huge surprise—when residents of two different locales looked up to see the sky filled with, no, not snow, not hailstones the size of golf balls, not cherry blossom petals wafting on the breeze, but tadpoles.

It started in the city of Nanao, where one man counted more than 100 dead tadpoles on car windshields in an area of only 10 square meters. We’re no experts, but that surely must rank near the top of the International-Tadpoles-Falling-From-The-Sky-Density Scale.

Then it happened again, 48 hours later, this time in the city of Hakusan. That was a a few weeks ago, so reports should start arriving any minute now of birdbaths and rain barrels suddenly filling up with frogs, as the tadpoles matured. Stay tuned.

Believe it or not, this is far from the first amphibian rain on record, though you’re more likely to encounter frogs or toads falling from the sky than tadpoles. Frogs reportedly rained on Serbia just four years ago. And keep an eye out for fish too—a shower of them occurred in India as recently as 2006.




DanBing has lived in one Asian country and traveled in various others, engaging in activities that ranged from teaching English to playing Irish music to researching articles to marrying. The best part was usually the food, though the marriage hasn’t been too bad either. But of all his many accomplishments he is perhaps proudest of his close–extremely close–association with the person who wrote The Devil’s Food Dictionary: A Pioneering Culinary Reference Work Consisting Entirely of Lies (www.frogchartpress.com).