Did you know that a frog never has to drink because it soaks up water through its skin? In Egypt, the little frog has long been the symbol of life and fertility. The Egyptian goddess Heget is a frog goddess who represents fertility. Frogs come in all different colors and combinations of colors. The presence of frogs is an indicator of a healthy ecosystem. If there are few frogs, then that ecosystem is in trouble. That is why frogs are our friends!
There are 6,000 species of frogs worldwide, and their life expectancy in the wild is 10-12 years. In captivity, they have been known to live up to 20 years. The largest species of frog weighing up to 7 lbs. is the goliath West African frog measuring up to 15 inches; the smallest is the Cuban tree frog which is less than a half inch long. Frogs have been on the earth as long as the dinosaurs, at least 200 million years. They are carnivorous, short-bodied and tailless, after losing their tails in the tadpole stage of development.
Most frogs are nonpoisonous, but poisonous frogs warn predators of their toxicity by displaying very bright colors. However, there are a few species that mimic the poisonous frogs with bright colors and look dangerous to pedators for their own protection like the Fort Randolph robber frog.
Reproduction is accomplished in a number of different ways depending on the specific species of frog. For example, most frogs typically lay their eggs in water, and the male fertilizes the eggs as the female lays them in the water. He hugs the female in a mating ritual that is called “amplexus”. A clutch of eggs can consist of 3,000 to 5,000 eggs. The eggs hatch into tadpoles and metamophose into adults. However, some frogs lay on land and skip the tadpole stage. While others ingest the fertilized eggs and suspend gastric juices until the babies are ready to exit via the mother’s mouth.
There is no scientific difference between toads and frogs. Frogs are aquatic and toads live mostly on land. Frogs’ bodies are a little longer than toads, and toads skins are drier and a little bumpy compared to the slimy, slick body of frogs. Frogs are known for their jumping abilities; they can jump 20 times their length. The males have a vocal sac that acts as a megaphone and their croaking can be heard a mile away. Also, a frog’s call is unique to the species.
Forty percent of amphibians are now threatened with extinction. Since frogs are excellent indicators of a healthy environment, it is important to preserve and protect this species. One way to show your support is to buy some brightly colored Stickertalk stickers to proudly display and remind people of the importance of preserving our little amphibian friends!
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