Wood Frog

Rana sylvatica
Family Ranidae

* Distinguished by a black patch that extends behind the eye, over the 'ear', to the base of the front limb.
* Skin smooth, with no warts. Back and sides colored varying shades of brown.
* Toes pointed, legs long and slender.
* Male darker, female bigger.
* Length: 2 2 3/5".

Natural History:
* Habitat: Woodlands in the summer, under stones and stumps in winter, wood ponds in breeding season.
* Range: Northern, eastern, and central United States, southeastern and south-central Canada.

* Voice: A hoarse clacking, resembling the quack of a duck.
* Behavior: Mates in April in the north, earlier in the south. Feeds on insects. In spring, the female lays black and white eggs, in spherical underwater clusters coated in jelly. The pink and bronze tadpoles hatch in 4 to 24 days, developing into adults in four years.
* Native.

* Wood frogs have perfected cryogenic freezing long before the winter, as much as 35 to 45 percent of the frog's body may turn to ice. Ice crystals form beneath the skin and become interspersed among the body's skeletal muscles. During the freeze, the frog's breathing, blood flow, and heartbeat cease. Freezing is made possible by specialized proteins and glucose, which prevent intracellular freezing and dehydration.

* Wood frogs are masters of camouflage - they can change from dark to light to match with their surroundings within an hour. The photos show frogs matching their different backgrounds.


Created by: Niki Zhou and Carla Holleran
Maintained by: Nick Rodenhouse
Created: June 25, 2004
Last Modified: August 7, 2004
Expries: June 1, 2005