Frogs by State

Frogs and Toads of Minnesota

Frogs and Toads of Minnesota

Frogs

If you are looking to identify a specific frog and can’t figure it out from the page, you can check my Frog Identification and see how to contact me about helping you out.

Minnesota is home to a variety of different frogs from the tree frog family and the tree frog family.

True Frog Family – Ranidae

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Wood Frog (Rana sylatica)

Common Name: Wood Frog
Scientific Name: Rana sylvatica
Location: Northern half of state
Breeding Season: early spring when the ice is melting

The Wood Frog is easy to identify because of their raccoon mask around their eyes.

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Northern Leopard Frog (Rana pipiens)

Common Name: Northern Leopard Frog
Scientific Name:
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The Northern Leopard Frog has large black dots down its back. It also has a dorsal ridge down its side.

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Green Frog (Rana clamitans)

Common Name: Green Frog
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The Green Frog is probably the most common frog in the Eastern United States. Best way to tell them apart from other true frogs below is the dorsal ridge on its back does not go all the way down its back.

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American Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana)

Common Name: American Bullfrog
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American Bullfrog is the largest frog in Minnesota. They are very similar to Green Frogs but they don’t have a dorsal ridge down their back. It wraps around their tympanum.

mink_frog

Mink Frog (Rana septrentionalis) has a black marbled body. It is found in the northern part of the state.

Common Name: Mink Frog
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Tree Frog family – Hylidae

Hylidae contains three different genera of frogs, the Tree frogs (Hyla), the Cricket frogs (Acris), and the Chorus frogs (Pseudacris).

Common Name: Spring Peeper
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The Spring Peeper has a noticable X on its back that no other frog in Minnesota has. It is incredibly small but loud. Its call is one of the first signs of spring.

Common Name: Boreal Chorus Frog
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Boreal Chorus Frog is similar to the Spring Peeper in appearance and size but it has lines running down its back instead of an X like the Spring Peeper. It is found throughout the state.

Common Name: Eastern Gray Tree Frog
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These two frogs are identical besides their calls and chromosome numbers. These tree frogs are also larger than the ones below. Also note that Gray Tree Frogs are not always gray and can be green.

Here is a video of some Eastern Gray Tree Frog males calling that I took

Common Name: Cope’s Gray Tree Frog
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Blanchard’s Cricket Frog (Acris blanchardi) is a similar size of the Chorus frogs but lacks any real pattern on its back.

Common Name: Blanchard’s Cricket Frog
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Toads

Minnesota has a few toads but from only the true toad family.

True Toads – Bufonidae

Canadian_Toad_-Anaxyrus_hemiophrys

The Canadian Toad (Anaxyrus hemiophrys) is found in the western part of the state.  The cranial crest of the Canadian Toad is fused and it touches the parotid gland. 

Common Name: Canadian Toad
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Common Name: Great Plains Toad
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The Great Plains Toad looks a lot like the American Toad and the Canadian Toad but it has a V shaped bump between its eyes. It is only found in the far west side of the state so if you are close to Wisconsin and see a toad, its probably not a Great Plains Toad.

American Toad (Anaxyrus americanus)

Common Name: American Toad
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The American Toad is found throughout the state. It differs from the other toads because its parotid gland and cranial crest don’t touch.

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