7 Mindblowing Freaky Frogs

January is Save the Frogs Month! And to remember them, we’ve put together the freakiest most bizarre  Halloween-worthy lineup frogs that will blow your mind. You can expect a pokemon like an appearance, funny behavior, and other freaky amphibian adaptations. 

Turtle Frog

This funny-looking frog is an Aussie native with a very peculiar body shape superficially resembling like a baby turtle. Unlike most frogs, which burrow into the ground using their hind legs, they burrow using their front muscular arms through loamy soils. 

Image source: https://www.amphibianfact.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Baby-Turtle-Frog.jpg
Image source: https://www.amphibianfact.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/Baby-Turtle-Frog.jpg

They can grow to nearly 2 inches long, don’t need water to reproduce; instead, a male will dig a burrow almost 4 feet deep and attracts female form there. Female turtle frogs can lay as many as 50 eggs in the burrow. The young don’t have a tadpole stage but instead stay in the eggs, emerging as tiny, fully formed frogs.

Hairy Frog

They are also called “the horror frog”, because when threatened, it produces claws like cats, which puncture the toe pads on their hind feet, and use them as weapons. 

Image source: https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/tetrapod-zoology/squeakers-frogs-with-claws-frogs-with-hair/
Image source: https://eol.org/pages/331425

What’s more bizarre is they grow hair-like strands on their sides that are actually skin and arteries, which might allow them to take in additional oxygen from the water while they’re guarding their young. Yikes!

Surinam Toad

They are long, brown, and strangely very flat (as flat as pancakes) for a very good reason; to blend perfectly with muddy river bottoms to hide from predators.

Image source: https://eol.org/pages/332922

The mating cycle of these frogs is odd.  The male calls to the female underwater with a clicking sound; she releases up to 100 eggs into the water, which the male fertilizes and pushes into her back. 

Her skin grows up over the eggs until they’re entirely enclosed. The young hatch and ride on her back for up to four months as they develop. When they’re ready, the toadlets push to loosen the female’s skin, pockets on her back open up, and the young pop out. To breed again, she sheds her skin.

Purple Frog

Native to India’s Western Rivers, and is also called the “Pignose Frog”.They spend most of their time underground (more than 8 meters!) feeding on termites and worms and emerging only to mate. 

Image source: https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/article/purple-frog-new-species-discovery-india-monsoon

Mating is a challenge for male frogs because of their wide bodies and stubby legs. Their body is well suited only in the underground, and not so much for getting it on.  Mating involves a lot of scrambling on the male’s part as he attempts to get on the much-larger female’s back and hang on.

Desert Rain Frog

Dubbed as the “World’s Cutest Frog”, this pokemon-looking amphibian live in wet environments in swamps or forests and likes to bury itself in sandy beaches across South Africa and Namibia.

It has an unusual high-pitched cry that sounds like a dog’s chew toy.

Vietnamese Mossy Frog

Image source: https://www.australiangeographic.com.au/blogs/creatura-blog/2020/05/the-mossy-frog-is-the-sweetest-thing/

They are found in the tropical forests and wetlands of northern Vietnam. They have a very form of camouflage that resembles moss and lichen. When they spot a predator, they hide by curling its legs inwards, so only the mossy body is visible. It has large pads on its feet to stick to trees and its diet consists entirely of insects. The Vietnamese Mossy frog is also a popular pet in Asia.

Goliath Frog

Goliath Frog is the largest frog on Earth. It can grow up to 15 inches in length and can weigh up to three kilograms. In fact, the giant African Bullfrog is only half the size of the Goliath frog.

Image source: https://www.biographic.com/taking-down-goliath/
Image source: https://www.biographic.com/taking-down-goliath/

They are West African native and feeds on crabs, small snakes and even other frogs. The Goliath frog makes no sound due to the lack of a vocal sac. It has huge, powerful legs that allow it to jump a great distance—up to three meters (10 feet). 

Unfortunately, like many other frog species, the Goliath frog is an endangered species because they are heavily hunted as pets.

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