Frog of the Week

Lake Titicaca Water Frog (Telmatobius culeus)

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Photo from Denver Zoo

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Common Name: Lake Titicaca Water Frog or Titicaca Scrotum Water Frog
Scientific Name: Telmatobius culeus
Family: Telmatobiidae
Location: Bolivia and Peru
Size: 5.4 inches or 137.95 mm

The Lake Titicaca Water Frog is only found in Lake Titicaca, the the largest lake in South America, which is on the border of Bolivia and Peru. The Lake Titicaca frog is an aquatic species of frog. It doesn’t need to come to the surface to breath because the water in the lake is oxygen rich and the skin folds on it’s body. It can come up for air if the water isn’t oxygen rich but the frog’s lungs have adapted to be smaller. Another adaption the frog has is that when it’s threatened, it can releases a secretion that’s gross.

The Lake Titicaca Water Frog is listed as critically endangered. The frog faces many different threats. Humans like to eat the frog because they believe it’s an aphrodisiac.  Pollution in the lake has lead to huge, think thousands, of die offs. Also humans introduced non-native trouts to lake for fishing, and these trouts like to eat the tadpoles.

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