kinds of frogs - habitats - adaptations

forest and lake
Frogs can be found almost anywhere on earth.
There are frogs in the desert, in the mountains or in rainforests.
Some frogs live in swamps and rivers and some live in trees.
There are even frogs in the Arctic.
The only place there are no frogs is Antarctica.

frog on a liliypad


The WOOD FROG spends most if its time in the woods. In the winter it sleeps under stumps of trees or under logs. In the spring it can be found near ponds or pools of water.. The wood frog is brown with a black mask over the sides of its head. Wood frogs live in Canada and northern United States and can be found as far north as the Arctic Circle. When the weather gets too cold, they bury themselves, then shut down. Wood frogs can stay frozen for weeks.

The SPRING PEEPERS are tiny frogs. Some are as small as a penny The male can blow up its throat and make a high shrill sound (peep, peep, peep). The call is mistaken for that of a cricket. This frog lives in wooded areas near marshes, ponds or streams. Spring peepers spend alot of time in thick grasses and weeds and have toe pads for climbing and gripping on to plants This tiny frog has many predators, but the skin coloring (grays to browns) is an excellent camouflage. It spends the winter in the mud or under a pile of leaves.This frog is found in Canada and the United States.

The North American BULLFROG is the biggest frog in Canada and the United States. A bullfrog may grow up to 20 cm (8 inches) long. This bullfrog must live in water so is usually found near a lake, pond, river, or bog. They prefer shallow water. The hind feet are fully webbed. Bullfrogs have loud voices (listen). When they croak it sounds like they are saying "jug-o-rum" Bullfrogs rely mostly on camouflage to hide from their enemies. Their color varies from brownish to shades of green, often with dark spots on the back. They will hibernate during cold weather.

The TREE FROG has sticky pads on the tips of the fingers and toes. These pads help it stick to plants and trees. The tree frog changes its color to the color of its surroundings. This is the way a tree frog hides. Some species of tree frogs (the chorus frog) are found in Canada. This frog's call sounds alot like a bird chirping.

The GREEN FROG spends most of its time in the pond . Sometimes it is called the pond frog Most are a bright green in color, but some may be tan or brown. The green frog prefers shallow marshes and ponds, or slow-moving rivers. It floats with only its head above water and also likes to sit on lily pads..

There is a frog with spots like a leopard. It is called a LEOPARD FROG. It is also called a meadow frog because it likes open grassy areas. This frog sits and waits for its meal to come along. Then it leaps to grab its prey. It is found in all the provinces in Canada.

FLYING FROGS have webbing on their hands and feet. The webbing helps them glide between trees in the rainforests. They stretch out the webbing into a fan shape to catch the air so they do not fall quickly. This is a fast way to move about in the rainforest and also helps the frogs escape predators.

The biggest frog in the world is the GOLIATH FROG. This giant frog lives in swift-flowing rivers in the rainforests of West Africa. Its body is 30 cm long (12 inches). With its legs stretched out, the span is up to 80 cm.

MOUNTAIN FROGS are disappearing. They live in cool, rocky, shaded streams and ponds in the mountains of California. U.S.A.. Loss of habitat and polluted waters are contributing to their decline. The introduction of trout into the mountain streams means more hungry fish to feed on these frogs. They are also dying from a disease (fungus) which attacks their skin


Frogs are cold-blooded animals. So frogs that live where it gets too cold can't be active all year round. They adapt by hibernating through the coldest part of the year. Some species hibernate in burrows . Some crawl under fallen trees or piles of leaves. Others bury themselves in mud at the bottom of a pond or stream. During hibernation a frog does not eat or move. It lives off its body fat and breathes through its skin. When spring comes the sun warms up the ground and the water in the pond. The frog wakes up and comes out of the mud to look for food.



When a frog forces air from its lungs, the vocal cords vibrate and give off sound. Many species have a vocal sac, which fills with air and swells like a balloon producing a much louder call. Male frogs sing. After a rain you may hear frog "chorus".


Some frogs sing
- to attract a mate (different species have different calls).
- to mark their terrritory
- because the weather is going to change

Frogs may call out when they are frightened or caught by a predator..


BACK - All About Frogs

May, 2007

Web Pages for Students

credits - frog sounds, copyright Doug Von Gausig,
used with permission