Frog of the Week

Hairy Frog (Trichobatrachus robustus)


Common Name: Hairy Frog, Horror Frog, and Wolverine Frog
Scientific Name: Trichobatrachus robustus
Family: Arthroleptidae
Location: Angola, Cameroon, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and Nigeria
Size: 4.3 inches or 110 mm

The Hairy Frog is a frog species native to western sub-Saharan coast of Africa. They get their name from the hair like structures that form on males during breeding season. Males also differ from females as they are significantly larger than the females. The frog is terrestrial but come back to the water to breed. They lay their eggs on rocks in streams. The male stays behind and protects the eggs from predators. The hair like structures that the male forms help them stay in the water to protect the eggs by helping increase oxygen absorption.

What makes these frogs interesting is that they have retractable “claws”. They aren’t true claws because they are actually bone not keratin. When the frog is threatened, they break their bones in their feet and the sharp bones project out. It is like Wolverine from X-men.

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