Frogs and Toads of Virginia
The Green Frog and American Bullfrog looks the same but the Bullfrog can grow larger and the bull frog lacks dorsal ridges down their back.
The Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog and Southern Leopard Frog are basically identical besides that the Atlantic Coast Leopard Frog has light markings on dark background on thigh while the Southern Leopard Frog is the opposite.
Pickeral Frog looks similar to the leopard frogs but it has rectangular markings instead of spots.
The Wood Frog (Rana sylvatica) has a raccoon like mask around its eyes that give it a distinct look.
The Carpenter Frog has two light bands down its back.
Cricket Frogs – Acris
The Cricket Frogs look really similar but there’s a few ways to tell them apart. The Southern Cricket Frog has a more pointed snout while the Northern Cricket Frog has a more blunt snout. The Southern Cricket Frog doesn’t have as much webbing on the back legs as the Northern Cricket Frog.
Tree Frogs – Hyla
The Cope’s Gray Tree Frog and Eastern Gray Tree Frog are identical to the eye but there calls and number of chromosomes are different. They also have orange markings on their back legs.
The Pine Wood’s Frog looks like the Gray Tree Frogs but the Pine Wood’s Frog has orange spots on its legs instead of markings.
The Green Tree Frog, Squirrel Tree Frog, and Barking Tree Frog are all very similar. The Barking Tree Frog has much rougher skin than the others. The Green Tree Frog has a white line down its side.
Chorus Frogs – Pseudacris
Spring Peeper and the Mountain Chorus Frog are similar but the markings on their back can be used to tell them apart. The Spring Peeper has an X on its back while the Mountain Chorus Frog has 2 backwards parenthesizes that look like )(. Sometimes they touch that can kinda look like an x but there’s also a dark triangle between its eyes that the Spring Peeper doesn’t have.
Brimeley’s Frog has a stripe through its eye and down the side. It also has no stripes on its back.
The Upland Chorus Frog has three stripes on its back that are often broken.
The Southern Chorus Frog has three stripes on its back but it has a more pointed snout. It also has darker markings than the other Chorus frogs.
The New Jersey Frog has three stripes on its back but they are broader and the dorsal stripes aren’t broken.
Little Grass Frog is similar to the other frogs with 3 stripes down its back but it’s smaller and has no white lines on the the lips.
The Oak Toad is the most easily identifiable toad out of the group of four. It is the smallest of the group and has a light line down its back. The Oak Toad also has orange on the bottom of its feet.
The remaining three species of toads in Alabama are a lot harder to distinguish between. To identify the differences, you have to look at the top of the head. The Southern Toad has knobs on the back of its head. The Fowler’s Toad’s parotid gland touches its postorbital ridge around its eye while the American Toads’s parotid gland does not touch or connected to it by a spur. Here’s an easy map I found that helps me.
The Eastern Narrow Mouthed Toad is the only narrow mouthed toad in the state. The narrow, pointed head makes it easy to identify.
The Eastern Spadefoot toad is the only spadefoot toad in the state. It has a spade on its foot that it uses for burrowing in the sand.