Frog of the Week

Sheep Frog (Hypopachus variolosus)


Common Name: Sheep Frog, Mexican Narrow Mouthed Toad
Scientific Name: Hypopachus variolosus
Family: Microhylidae
Location: Belize, Costa Rica, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and the United States
US Location: Texas
Size: 1 – 1.5 inches (2.5 – 4 cm)

The Sheep Frog may not have any wool but it’s mating call sounds exactly like a sheep. You will probably only see the frog during breeding time because they are fossorial, generally live in burrows underground or under logs. The frog ranges from color from olive green to brown. Sexually mature males have dark throats. They move to temporary ponds to breed during heavy rains in March to September. Males will call from the shallows of the ponds to attract the females. Reproduction is pretty standard. The male will grab the female from behind in the amplexus pose. The female will then lay her eggs and the male will fertilize them. The female lays around 700 eggs at a time. No parent will provide any care for the offspring. The eggs hatch into tadpoles in under 12 hours and then the tadpoles will take only a month to turn into froglets. 

photo by Sean Michael Rovito

The Sheep Frog is listed as a threatened by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department so they are protected from collection.

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