Frog of the Week

Smoky Jungle Frog (Leptodactylus pentadactylus)

photo by Ltshears

leastconcern

Common Name: Smoky Jungle Frog
Scientific Name: Leptodactylus pentadactylus
Family: Leptodactylidae
Location: Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Peru, and Suriname
Size: 7.2 inches / 185 mm

The Smoky Jungle Frog is one of the largest frogs in the world, with females reaching over 7 inches long while males are slightly smaller. The frogs have a long life span that can reach over 15 years.

Mating takes place during the rainy months. Females form foam nests that the eggs are laid into to protect them from the environment. Not all eggs are fertilized, when the tadpoles emerge, they eat the unfertilized eggs.

The super power of the Smoky Jungle Frog is its anti predator defense system where its able to secrete vast amounts of mucus when attacked. Besides the mucus being gross,  it is also toxic so any predator won’t want to eat them.

 

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Frog of the Week

Ornate Horned Frog (Ceratophrys ornata)

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photo by Adrian Pingstone

nearthreatened
Common Name: Ornate Horned Frog, Bell’s Horned Frog, and Argentina Horned Frog
Scientific Name: Ceratophrys ornata
Family: Ceratophryidae
Location: Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay
Max Size: 6.5 inches for females, 4.5 for males

The Ornate Horned Frog is part of the Horned Frog family which are often called the Pacman Frogs. They resemble Pacman because their heads are most of their body and they love to eat.  The Ornate Horned Frog is pretty common in the pet trade and they are fairly easy to take care of.

The Ornate Horned Frog is a sit and wait predator. In the wild, they bury part of themselves and wait for prey to walk in front of them. They spend most of their life like this.

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photo by Melanie Mae Bryan

When fall and winter comes, the frog burrows down into the ground where it then creates a cocoon-like structure to keep in moisture and heat. It stays below the ground until spring. During the spring time, the frogs mate and lay their eggs in temporary pools of water.  Interestingly, the tadpoles of the Ornate Horned Frog can make distress calls in and out of water. It’s the first known vertebrate larval form that can make sounds.

The Ornate Horned Frog is listed as Near Threatened. Their habitat is destroyed to make ways for farms and villages. If their habitat isn’t destroyed for farms or villages, pollution from nearby villages and farms harm their habitat.

Frog of the Week

Hula Painted Frog (Latonia nigriventer)

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photo by Sarig Gafny

CR

Common Name: Hula Painted Frog
Scientific Name: Latonia nigriventer
Family: Alytidae
Location: Israel
Size: 5 inches for females, 4.7 inches for males

The Hula Painted Frog was thought to be extinct before being re-discovered in 2011. Its only found in the marshes surrounding Lake Hula in Israel.  The lakes and marshes were drained way back in the 50s which lead researchers to believe that the frog was extinct. The lake area has now become a reserve for wildlife which has helped the species.

The Hula Painted Frog is the only living species in the genus Latonia. There are a few other species in the family but they are all extinct and only known from fossils.

Frog of the Week

Emerald Glass Frog (Espadarana prosoblepon)

emeraldglassfrog
photo by Brian Gratwicke

leastconcern
Common Name: Emerald Glass Frog, Nicaragua Giant Glassfrog
Scientific Name: Espadarana prosoblepon
Family: Glass Frog Family – Centrolenidae
Location: Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Nicaragua, and Panama
Size: 1.2 inches or 31 mm for females, 1.1 inches or 28 mm for males

The Emerald Glass Frog is a beautiful frog from Central and South America. Like other glass frogs, the Emerald Glass Frogs skin is see through, hence the name and they live their lives in the trees. The Emerald Glass Frog even mates in the trees.

Male Emerald Glass Frogs claim territory over hanging trees during the mating season which is from May to November (during the rainy season).  If another male enters the territory, a fight may break out. These fights can take over 30 minutes long and last until one frog falls from the tree or gives up.

When the female enters the territory, the male jumps on her back and they start to reproduce. They lay their eggs on leaves or rocks overhanging streams and then they leave. The eggs hatch a week or so later and the tadpoles then fall into the stream.

 

Frog of the Week

Natterjack Toad (Epidalea calamita)

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photo by Piet Spaans

leastconcern
Common Name: Natterjack Toad
Scientific Name: Epidalea calamita
Family: Bufonidae
Location: Austria, Belarus, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom
Size: 3 inches

The Natterjack Toad is widespread across Europe but rare in the United Kingdom and Ireland. The toad emerges from hibernation around March or April and then starts to breed until the start of summer. They are commonly found in sandy areas.

Frog of the Week

Muller’s Termite Frog (Dermatonotus muelleri)

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photo by Diogo B. Provete

leastconcern

Common Name: Muller’s Termite Frog
Scientific Name: Dermatonotus muelleri
Family: Microhylidae
Location: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, and Paraguay
Max Size: 2 inches, 50 mm

Muller’s Termite Frog is a burrowing (fossorial) frog found in South America.  It is the only species in its genus. Their diet consists of termites. When they come to the surface to breed during the rainy season, thousands of males can be heard calling. They reproduce and lay their eggs in water bodies that are shallow. These frogs can be found in the pet trade.

Frog of the Week

American Bullfrog (Lithobates catesbeianus)

IMG_1138
leastconcern
Common Name: American Bullfrog
Scientific Name: Lithobates / Rana catesbeianus
Family: Ranidae
Location: Canada, Mexico, and the United States of America
US State Location: Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, West Virginia, and Wyoming
Introduced Locations: Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, China, Colombia, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, Haiti, Indonesia, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Malaysia, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, Uruguay, and Venezuela
Max Size: 6.3 inches

The American Bullfrog is one of the largest frogs in the world which has lead it to be one of the most invasive frogs in the world. Its naturally found in North America but has spread to South America, Europe, and Asia. Their large size gives it an advantage over other frogs when it comes to catching prey and they also just eat other frogs. Invasive American Bullfrogs also can spread diseases and viruses.

In its natural range, the American Bullfrog is one of the last frogs to come out of hibernation and the last to start breeding. Their call is very noticeable and is one of the common sounds of the swamp.

Frog of the Week

Zaire Dwarf Clawed Frog (Hymenochirus boettgeri)

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Photo by Mwatro

leastconcern

Common Name: Zaire Dwarf Clawed Frog
Scientific Name: Hymenochirus boettgeri
Family: Pipidae
Location: Cameroon, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, and Nigeria
Size: 1.4 inches or 35 mm, females larger than males

The Zaire Dwarf Clawed Frog is part of the group of frogs referred to as the Dwarf Clawed Frogs in the pet trade. The Zaire Dwarf Clawed Frog is the most common species of the Dwarf Clawed Frogs in the pet trade.

The Zaire Dwarf Clawed Frog is an aquatic species of frog. They only come up to the surface every few hours to take a breath. Like other members of the family Pipidae, the Zaire Dwarf Clawed Frog lacks teeth and a tongue.

Frog of the Week

Golden Coquí (Eleutherodactylus jasperi)

Eleutherodactylus_jasperi
Photo by George Dewey, USFWS

CR
Common Name: Golden Coquí, Coquí Dorado
Scientific Name: Eleutherodactylus jasperi
Family: Eleutherodactylidae
Location: Puerto Rico
Size: Under one inch long

The Golden Coquí is a small frog found only in Puerto Rico but it might even be extinct there. It hasn’t been seen since 1981. The frogs are only found in bunches of bromeliads of the genera Guzmania, Hohenbergia, and Vriesia.

The Golden Coquí is one of the only ovoviviparous frogs in the world. After mating, it becomes pregnant for under a month and then gives birth to small froglets.

Frog of the Week

Couch’s Spadefoot Toad (Scaphiopus couchii)

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Photo by Clinton & Charles Robertson

leastconcern
Common Name: Couch’s Spadefoot Toad
Scientific Name: Scaphiopus couchii
Family: Scaphiopodidae
Location: Mexico and the United States of America.
US Location: Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas
Size: 3 inches or 8 centimeters

Like all Spadefoot Toads, the Couch’s Spadefoot Toad has a keratonized sheath on it’s back feet. They use this “spade” to help them dig. The Coach’s Spadefoot Toad has a more sickle-shaped spade which can help distinguish it from other Spadefoot toads. The toad is named after Darius N. Couch, who collected the first specimen observed by white people.

For most of the year, the Couch’s Spadefoot Toad is found burrowed down underneath the ground. When the rain starts in spring and summer, the frogs come out and breed in temporary ponds.