Frog of the Week

European Common Frog (Rana temporaria)

Common Frog
photo by  Bill and Sam Lionheart

least concern
Common Name: European Common Frog,  European Common Brown Frog, and just Common Frog
Scientific Name: Rana temporaria
Family: Ranidae – True Frog Family
Locations: Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom
Size: 2.4 to 3.5 inches (6 to 9 cm)

The European Common Frog lives throughout Europe including close to the Arctic Circle. They are a very cold tolerant species and are active throughout most of the year. The frogs hibernate in the winter starting in October and ending in February or March. They hibernate underwater and sometimes form underwater hibernacula with thousands of other frogs.

Once, the frogs awake from their hibernation and they are ready to mate. Mating occurs from March to June but in most places, it occurs in April. The males will start to develop a blue throat to help attract females. The male frogs start to move towards shallow water bodies such as shallow bodies of water such as ponds, lakes, and canals. Next, he calls out to attract females to the water. Once the female arrives, the male grasps her from behind in the amplexus position. Then, she lays her eggs and the male fertilizes them. The female lays between 1 to 2 thousand eggs at a time. Neither parent provides any parental care for the offspring.

photo by Henk Wallays

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List categorizes the Common Frog as Least Concern for Extinction. They have a massive range and are believed to be abundant throughout it.

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