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African Bull Frog

About...

Scientific Name: Pyxicephalus adspersus

Range: East and south from Nigeria. They also live throughout the eastern savanna regions, from Somalia to Port Elizabeth, and west to Angola.

Habitat: Open grassland near fresh water areas

Diet: Anything that it can fit in its mouth including fish, insects, birds, reptiles and other amphibians.

Life Span: 35-40 years

Description: The African bullfrog is one of the largest frogs inAfrica. It has a chubby round body and big broad head, with a large mouth. Its front feet have short blunt toes, with no webbing, while its hind legs are strong and are used to dig holes; hind feet have webbing. Its skin is bumpy and olive green in color, with a cream or yellow-colored belly and throat. This helps them camouflage with their surroundings. Unlike other frog and toad species the male grows much larger then the female.  Males can reach lengths of 9in and weigh over 4lbs.  As a defense mechanism, these frogs will open their mouths and can puff up to double their size. Another feature unique to these frogs is that they have tooth-like projections that aid in holding prey.

Family Life: Breeding is during the rainy season.  Up to 4,000 eggs are laid in shallow pools of water. After just 2 days, the tadpoles emerge.  After several weeks the tadpoles lose their tails. Juveniles are striped.  Bullfrogs reach sexual maturity by 3 years of age but will continue to grow for up to 20 years.

Nature Notes: In the dry season, they will bury themselves underground for 10 months-two years. With reptiles and amphibians this process is called brumation. They will cover themselves in a mucous cocoon, which will harden over time as the mud begins to dry. When the rainy season comes, the moisture from the mud softens the cocoon and allows the frog to emerge again. They rely on their keen sense of smell and sight in order to hunt for food.  They also use roar-like calls to locate mates and alert others to danger.

 




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