Common Name: Smooth Sided Toad or Spotted Toad Scientific Name:Rhaebo guttatus Family:Bufonidae – True Toad family Locations: Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela Female Size: 7 – 9 inches (17.78 – 22.86 cm) Male Size: 6 -7 inches (15.24 – 17.78 cm
The Smooth Sided Toad received its name for it lack of warts on its body, a typical feature of true toads. This doesn’t make it any less of a toad. The toad live amongst the leaf litter in tropical rain forests. It is primarily active during the night (nocturnal).
For mating, the Smooth Sided Toad breeds in permanent and non permanent puddles and swampy areas. The males call out from the edges of these water bodies in an attempt to attract a mate. The eggs hatch in 10 days and then take around 3 months to complete their metamorphosis.
Common Name: Black Mountain Boulder Frog, Rock Haunting Frog, Rock Frog Scientific Name:Cophixalus saxatilis Family:Microhylidae – Narrow Mouth Toad family Locations: Australia Size: 1.96 inches (5 cm)
The Black Mountain Boulder Frog lives in the Black Mountain National Park and the surrounding areas in Northeastern Australia. They live specifically in boulder fields of the Black Trevathan Range.
The frog breeds between October and March, peaking in November and December following rain. Female frogs lay their eggs on land under rocks. The males of the species protect the eggs until they hatch. From the eggs emerge tiny froglets, meaning they skip a free tadpole stage.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assesses the Black Mountain Boulder Frog as Least Concern for Extinction. The frog has a very small range and a very specific habitat requirements. This has lead to it being labeled as Vulnerable to Extinction in the past but the population is stable and they are in a protected area.
Common Name: Stephen’s Rocket Frog Scientific Name:Anomaloglossus stepheni Family:Dendrobatidae – Poison Dart Frog family* Locations: Brazil and Suriname Size: 0.55 – 0.67 inches (14 – 17 mm)
The Stephen’s Rocket Frog is active during the day (diurnal) amongst the leaf litter in tropical rain forests. Reproduction happens between November and March, peaking in January. Females lay between 3 – 6 eggs on nest on land that is formed by 2 leaves, one on top of the other to create a hot pocket. The male frogs protect the eggs while the female leaves. Other females can come and mate with the male, leaving different clutches of eggs in the nest. The eggs hatch and a tadpole comes out. Interestingly, the male does not move the tadpole to a source of water but leaves it in the nest.
*Note on the family provided. Some people elevated Aromobatinae – Cryptic Poison Dart Frog subfamily into its own family which the Stephen’s Rocket Frog is part of. However, I don’t like it.
If you are like me at all, you are probably wondering who is Stephen? Why does he have rockets? Why does he have his rockets on rocks? The search for the answers to these questions took me on a deep mysterious journey. The man the frog is named after is Stephen R Edwards, a man who earned his PhD from Kansas. For his PhD, his dissertation was a phenetic analysis of the genus Colostethus in the family Dendrobatidae. Now you are wondering, the Stephen’s Rocket Frog is a member of the genus Anomaloglossus, wtf does this have to do with this other genus. Coloestethus was the originally Rocket Frog genus and was the genus that the Stephen’s Rocket Frog was in first.
Rockets on frogs? Sadly no, they get their name for appearing to be able to jump straight up like a rocket lifting off. This is not a defining feature of any of the frogs in the genus and many other frogs can do this so its a mediocre name. Now, you probably think this Stephen guy was the first one to find the frog, well….. no. In his dissertation in 1974, he predicted that this frog existed. It wasn’t until Marcio Martins discovered it in 1990 that Marcio named it after Stephens due to his prediction.
Conservation Status of the Stephen’s Rocket Frog
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assesses the frog as Least Concern for Extinction. The frog has a wide range and a presumed large population. However, they haven’t updated the assessment since 2004 so this could be outdated (but probably not). Only known threat to the frogs is deforestation.
Common Name: Common Sand Frog, Cryptic Sand Frog, Catequero Bullfrog, Tremolo Sand Frog Scientific Name:Tomopterna cryptotis Family:Pyxiecephalidae – African Bullfrog family Locations: Angola, Botswana, Cameroon, Chad, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe Size: 1.5 – 2 inches (38 – 51 mm)
The Common Sand Frog spends most of its time burrowed in the sands of the sub-Saharan savannahs and grasslands. They come up to the surface to breed at the start of the spring rains. The males call out from the edges of water bodies that are formed by the fresh rain. Once the female arrives, the male grasps her from behind in amplexus. Then, she lays her eggs and the male fertilizes them. Females lay between 1000 to 3000 eggs. Tadpoles hatch from the eggs between 1 to 3 days later. Neither parent provide any care for their offspring.
The Seychelles Frog lives in the leaf litter in the forests on the islands of Mahé, Silhouette and Praslin. They are one of the smallest frogs in the world. The females frog lay their eggs on the land. The frogs don’t need water because there is no tadpole phase. The eggs hatch directly into small froglets.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assesses the Seychelles Frog as Endangered. The main threats to the frog is invasive species and climate change. The habitat for the frogs is being reduced due to Cinnamomum verum, an invasive species. Sea water rise from climate change is suppose to decrease the size of the islands. The frog is only found on 3 small islands which doesn’t help with its survival.
Common Name: Freetown Long-fingered Frog and Mount Aureol Squeaker Scientific Name:Arthroleptis aureoli Family:Arthroleptidae Locations: Guinea and Sierra Leonne Size: 0.8 to 1.2 inches (2 – 3 cm)
The Freetown Long-fingered Frog was originally found in the forests on the Free Town Peninsula. However, new populations of the frog was found in the northeast of Sierra Leonne and into Guinea. Info about the frog is hard to find. For reproduction, they are a direct developers, skipping the tadpole stage and hatching directly into froglets.
Common Name: Java Indonesian Tree Frog or Pearly Tree Frog Scientific Name:Nyctixalus margaritifer Family:Rhacophoridae – Asian Tree Frog family Locations: Indonesia Female Size: 1.2 – 1.7 inches (31 – 43 mm) Male Size: 1.2 – 1.3 inches (30 – 33 mm)
The Java Indonesian Tree Frog lives high in trees in the mountains on Java Island. Sadly, not much is known about the species.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assesses the Java Indonesian Tree Frog as Least Concern for Extinction. They were considered Vulnerable to Extinction until new populations of the frogs were found. However, the frogs are still threatened by habitat loss from cutting down forests to make room for more coffee, tea, and rice farms.
Common Name: Granular Glass Frog Scientific Name:Cochranella granulosa Family:Centrolenidae – Glass Frog family Locations: Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama Male Size: 0.8 – 1.1 inches (22 – 29 mm) Female Size: 1.1 – 1.25 inches (29 – 32 mm)
The Granular Glass Frog lives in the trees and bushes of montane and humid lowland forests. They are a nocturnal species of frog, spending most of their day hiding on leaves. During the breeding season, the males of the species call from vegetation overhanging streams. Once the female arrive, the male grabs them from behind in amplexus. Then, the female lays her eggs and the male fertilizes them. The female lays between 49 – 60 eggs in a clutch on the vegetation above the stream. Neither parent provides any care for their offspring. Once the eggs hatch, the tadpoles fall into the stream below where they will complete their metamorphosis.
Common Name: Palawan Horned Frog Scientific Name:Pelobatrachus ligayae Family:Megophrynidae – Asian Leaf Litter Frog family Locations: Philippines Size: 2.7 – 4.3 inches (70 – 110 mm)
The Palawan Horned Frog lives in the leaf litter of montane and lowland rainforests on the islands of Balabac and Palawan. The frog sits most of the day, camouflaged amongst the leaves waiting for its prey to walk by. Once the prey crosses its path, the frog grabs the prey with its mouth and tries to swallow it whole. The eggs are laid in shallow, slow moving streams.
The frog was in genus Megophrys before being moved in 2021. It was also considered the same species as the Asian Horned Frog (Megophrys montana) before being moved to its own species in 1998.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List assesses the Palawan Horned Frog as Near Threatened with Extinction. The main threat to the frogs is the continued destruction of the rain forests they call home by humans Why are people doing this? Well for a lot of reasons. First, they want more room for cities, small farms, palm oil plantations, and mining. Next, the wood is wanted for charcoal making. Finally, the streams that they use for breeding get polluted by these activities. Better protection of these forests are needed to keep the frogs from becoming extinct.