Frogs and Toads of New Jersey
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.
New Jersey is home to a good range of frogs for its size.
The True Frogs are your typical frogs that are generally found along the shores of a lake or pond.
Common Name: American Bullfrog
Scientific Name: Rana catesbeiana
The American Bullfrog is the largest frog in the state. They are found near permanent bodies of water such as large ponds, streams, and lakes. Once the males of the species reach sexual maturity, their throats turn bright yellow. They are very similar to Green Frogs but they don’t have a dorsal ridge down their back. It wraps around their tympanum.
Common Name: Green Frog
Scientific Name: Rana clamitans
The Green Frog is a medium to large sized frog. They can be commonly found near pretty much any water body such as ponds, lakes, or streams. Once the males of the species reach sexual maturity, their throats turn bright yellow.
Common Name: Carpenter Frog
Scientific Name: Rana virgatipes
Location: Southern half of the state
Carpenter Frog is identifiable because of their brown color and two yellow lines that run down their back.
Common Name: Wood Frog
Scientific Name: Rana sylvatica
The Wood Frog is a small to medium sized frog. They vary in color from brown, silver, or red and they have dark “raccoon” eyes. When winter comes, the Wood Frog can freeze completely solid and then unthaw in spring. They start to breed once the ice is off the ponds in late March / early April. After breeding season, they are often found in the woods, far away from any water bodies.
Common Name: Pickeral Frog
Scientific Name: Rana palustris
The Pickerel Frog is a medium to large sized frog. Their dorsal ridge runs down from their eye to their back and inside there is rectangular boxes.
Common Name: Southern Leopard Frog
Scientific Name: Rana sphenocephalus
Common Name: Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog
Scientific Name: Rana kauffeldi
Location: Northern part of the state + western edge
Pickeral Frog and the Southern Leopard Frog look alike but the Pickeral Frog has more square spots than the Southern Leopard Frog.
There are many different tree frogs in New Jersey for its size. They fall into three groups: Tree Frogs, Cricket Frogs, and Chorus Frogs.
Common Name: Northern Cricket Frog
Scientific Name: Acris crepitans
The Northern Cricket Frog is the only Cricket Frog in the state.
Common Name: New Jersey Chorus Frog
Scientific Name: Pseudacris kalmi
Location: February to April
The New Jersey Chorus Frog and the Northern Cricket Frog are very similar. The New Jersey Chorus Frog has 3 lines down its back.
Common Name: Pine Barren’s Tree Frog
Scientific Name: Hyla andersonii
Location: Southeastern part of the state
Pine Barren’s Tree Frog has a a purple stripe down thru its eye and down its side.
Common Name: Eastern Gray Tree Frog
Scientific Name: Hyla versicolor
Common Name: Cope’s Gray Tree Frog
Scientific Name: Hyla chrysoscelis
The Gray Tree Frogs are nearly identical besides their calls and chromosome numbers. These medium sized frogs can be found perched in trees or on the side of your house. They are not always gray in color and can be green. They have yellow or orange coloration on their back legs.
Here is a video of some Eastern Gray Tree Frog males calling that I took
The True Toads are your typical toad. They usually have a parotid gland behind their eyes that contain a poison called It is not advised to let your dog eat these guys.
Common Name: American Toad
Scientific Name: Anaxyrs americanus
Location: Northern half
Common Name: Fowler’s Toad
Scientific Name: Anaxyrus fowleri
The Fowler’s Toad and the American Toad look very much a like but there are some differences in the back of the head.
The American Toad’s parotid gland is separated from the cranial crest while the Fowler’s Toad’s touches.
Common Name: Eastern Spadefoot Toad
Scientific Name: Scaphiopus holbrookii
Location: Southern half
The Eastern Spadefoot Toad is the only Spadefoot Toad in the state. Just look at the back foot and see if there is a spade.