Celebrate World Frog Day 2022

What comes to your mind when you think of rain, I asked a herpetologist. He kept silent for a few seconds and then his face brighten up with a huge smile and he asked me have u seen a frog? That shocked me for a while and I said who hasn't seen a frog? Yes, I have seen many. He laughed and asked me what do they look like? I replied, “Sticky”, “slimy”, “weird”...

He replied, then you have never seen frogs. At this point, I knew that either I am going to be a part of the laugh in his next lecture or I am going to get some serious talk. He asked me what I think of rain and I instantly replied a hot cup of tea with a beautiful view and weather of cuddle. He smiled at me said that’s the most common answer he gets. The nature lover inside me always thinks of frogs when it rains. He said that is the most important season for that fragile animal to survive. It’s very easy to reject slimy animals but very hard to understand their importance. It’s not like a fly that is just a nuisance in our lovable monsoon. Frogs do seem like non-important noisy creatures, hardly have we known that the noise is nothing but their “love song”.  Frogs come under class Amphibia, sharing this class with Caecilians, Salamander, and Newts and hence can be known as amphibians.

Tree Frog – Photographs © Reema Singh

To date, we have over 5000 species of frogs on our mighty earth and most importantly these 5000 species are known or has already been discovered by our scientist, however, there are still many frog species that are yet waiting to be discovered. Now come to think of it when we already have this many species why bother about their population? So in this beautiful Journey, I will share a few details which will tell us about the beauty of frogs and why to worry about them.

Amphibians are small animals that need some special cases for their better survival, like a moist environment (if it’s hot, cells going to die Mate) and water and hence rains come into the play. Amphibians also show a unique behaviour, they need both land and water for their survival. Frogs are not just simply a rusty looking animals, they also come into various colours with different behaviour.

Balloon Frog (left) & Tadpoles and eggs (right) – Photographs © Reema Singh

Fun Facts for Frog Lovers:

  • A cold-blooded invertebrate (no backbone) live partly in water and partly on land.
  • Some frogs are also called Toads and taught that they are different but there’s not much difference in them except Toads have much more rough and dry skin, and a gland of poison for their protection known as Parotid Gland.
  • Male frogs croak as loud as they can to reach out the female close by (a note to love). Female choose the best vocalist and then they have super MATING HUG (Amplexus) where female releases egg and male release sperms.
  • A female frog release aprox. 5000 eggs at once, but sadly as it’s the survival of the fittest almost around 2% of them hatch successfully.
  • For releasing egg water is needed, so that small fish like tadpoles can swim. 1st step of life starts with water..
  • Within 3 to 25 days (depending on the species) egg hatches into small tadpoles (pollywogs) with gills and tail.
  • In some cases Male becomes the guardian of the eggs by keeping them on their back, belly or in mouth – Safe location tough!!
  • Frogs go under metamorphosis which says that you need to transform before taking 2nd step of your life that starts with land.  Tadpoles become frog lets after losing their tail and gills, and develop limbs (legs). Jumping jags are ready.
  • The colony of frog is known as Army, young frogs swimming together form school…well hello fishies.
  • Frogs can live upto 30 years, and in captivity can live upto 20 years.
  • Golden Poison Frog (Phyllobates teribilis) is the most poisonous frog in the world yet one beautiful frog – Beauty comes with beast!!
  • Goliath Bullfrog is the largest frog (32cm in length) in the world weighing 3.25Kg, whereas Donahue (Paedophryne amauensis) is the smallest (7.7mm) frog in the world.

Why Frog Conservation is needed?

  • We never really noticed but frogs do a lot of work in silence.
  • Frogs love to eat insects they eat what bugs us. They control the insect population in their locality.
  • Frogs are an important part of the food chain as well, water birds, kingfishers feed happily on them.
  • Well, not just birds even in many parts of the world frogs are considered to be a healthy diet.
  • Frogs are very important biological Indicators.
  • A happy frog shows that all is good and a no frog shows that there’s a lot going on in your neighborhood.
  • Slimy layers on frogs are now being used for various medical purposes.

I hope this is enough for one to save them at any cost.

Bush Frog (left) – Photographs © Reema Singh

Threats

Frogs are now facing threats as much as we are evolving ourselves. The invasive species we introduce in the name of exotic beauty are killing the homey ones. Pollution, population, climate change, and habitat loss are one of the major threats they face. With every single rising year for humans, we are losing precious species of animals.

According to studies amphibians are the first to die when there are slight changes in their habitat, the main reason for over half of frog species to be in Danger or extinct.

What You Can Do

I am not saying that if you see a frog pick them up and thank them for all of the efforts they put to protect our habitat. But never miss an opportunity to save them if you can. A single effort can make a big change. A small place in your garden can also do a lot. Just by making a small water pool into a shady area can really make a lot of difference. And just because you are letting them swim they will take care of pests in your garden…a friendly and no-cost effort.  Learn to appreciate the beauty you already have in your habitat instead of bringing exotic beauties from outside.

Admire the jungle and enjoy the serene beauty of wetlands home of wild frogs.

Save water and that will not only save just frogs but a lot.

Get to know our Amphibian Friends | Fabulous Frogs

We join EcoTraining Instructor Henry Parsons and Media Intern Marie Schmidt on a frogging activity in search of our amphibian friends. In this episode, we take a look at the difference between frogs and toads.

About the Author: 

Reema Singh is a Naturalist who loves traveling, photography, reading, and research. Reema focuses on imparting as much knowledge to people about the importance of forests and animals.

Follow Reema @ https://natureimpress.blogspot.com/