My life is about living with nature – here you can live it with me!

Wood Frogs [springtime]

Wood Frog
Looking at a Wood Frog up close!

I have been teased recently with Nina’s special evening and Tom’s spring is coming posts talking about the big “amphibian/salamander night”! Many might remember my big migration night from last year on the 27 March 2007 and you just never know when the “big night” will happen this spring . . . . well, until maybe a night or two before the big event. I was looking back on my previous dates and they ranged from the 13th of March up to the 7th of April. What I am looking for is the weather to be very warm during the day and a rainy night to happen . . . . and then you will be seeing me standing out in the rain just waiting for the amphibian migration with camera in hand !!

Woodfrog
A Wood Frog that I found in the woods!

Ignoring the Salamanders . . . . I wanted to focus my early anticipation with a discussion on Wood Frogs (Rana sylvatica). These raccoon faced frogs are tan in color and can be very hard to find hopping around our woods (but they are there). They have some very interesting winter biology which can be explained from this video that I found on the web:

[blip.tv ?posts_id=726007&dest=-1]

Wasn’t that one of the most interesting things you have ever learned? Wood Frogs can be found in mature, deciduous forest and they love areas with a moist forest floor. After breeding in vernal pools . . . the females can lay anywhere from 500 to 2000 egg in a huge egg mass. Depending on the weather, the egg masses will hatch anywhere from 2-4 weeks. The tadpoles will spent the rest of there lives in the forest after emerging from the vernal pools. They will avoid being eaten by hiding in spots under leaves (using camouflage), in moist logs or in small holes that they can find. Predators are primary Raccoons and snakes but many other ground dwelling critters would try feasting on them. The big migration night is “always” my best opportunity to seeing many of these amazing frogs up close!

Woodfrog Eggs
Wood Frog Eggs

I can’t promise when but expect the big night to happen anytime soon!


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31 responses

  1. Lisa at Greenbow

    How exciting. I will have to get out and look for frogs. I have heard the peepers calling already.

    5 March 2008 at 7:33 pm

  2. That was totally fascinating! I never heard of such a thing, and actually seeing that frog thaw out was amazing. Wow! I love coming here and learning cool things like this!

    5 March 2008 at 7:55 pm

  3. @ Lisa – thanks and if you are hearing spring peppers than your wood frogs should be out!
    @ Rondi – thanks so very much and feel free to tell all your friends! I love trying to come up with things to pass along to everyone!

    5 March 2008 at 8:02 pm

  4. I love your blog. I never know what I’m going to learn next. And wow, such BLUE eyes.

    5 March 2008 at 8:07 pm

  5. I thought it was so fascinating on how the frogs freeze and then literally come back to life!

    5 March 2008 at 8:11 pm

  6. Wow those eggs are crazy!

    5 March 2008 at 8:37 pm

  7. Wow~that is up close! What great eyes he has..:) seriously ! Great captures! And once again a very interesting and informative post!
    Cat

    5 March 2008 at 9:05 pm

  8. Awesome! I’m absolutely amazed and enjoyed this video so much. Within hours of coming back to life from death, he’ll make whoopee. Woo-hoo!

    Thanks for a great post!

    5 March 2008 at 9:49 pm

  9. Wow, Mon@rch, what an amazing little frog. Now I’m wondering how many are “frozen” under the snow out in those woods I’ve hiked around this winter?
    Hurry up Spring!

    5 March 2008 at 10:20 pm

  10. @ Barb – thanks and if you come back from being dead . . . my eyes would probably be a little blue also! Glad you enjoy it here and I am always trying to think up ways of doing something new!
    @ J – wasn’t that great? I just knew that I had to use this video for something!
    @ Misti – thanks
    @ Catherine – that’s the best way to view them! Glad you enjoyed this!
    @ Mary – so glad that you enjoyed this and that could only happen with Mother Nature!
    @ Ruthie – I was thinking the same thing – GMTA!

    5 March 2008 at 10:23 pm

  11. NatureShutterbug

    Great post – that ia quite amazing. Do you know how frogs “hibernate” in non-snowy areas?

    5 March 2008 at 10:31 pm

  12. I love your frog pics! That wood frog must have been really hard to spot!

    5 March 2008 at 10:34 pm

  13. That was an amazing video. No wonder you love these little frogs so much. They really need to find out this little frog’s secrets. There must be some potential medical cures that could come of it. I’m looking forward to finding out when the frogs show up.

    6 March 2008 at 12:41 am

  14. Oh, the anticipation!!!

    6 March 2008 at 6:42 am

  15. Truly an interesting post as are all your posts!I learn so much and I must have my grandchildren tune in to learn about the frog! Thank you! :(NG

    6 March 2008 at 7:08 am

  16. Ann

    Great blog! We do a frog hatching event at the Jamestown Audubon, too. My favorite was when we saw a big thing slowly bursting through the middle of the vernal pool. It was a snapping turtle looking for a meal! That was good timing. Ann

    6 March 2008 at 8:01 am

  17. @ NatureShutterbug – thanks and I am not sure if “hibernate” is the right wording! But the truth is that I really am not sure! Sorry! But in this case this Woodfrog freezes within its body! Not sure!
    @ Chicago – thanks and they are very camo but this time of the year they are all over the roads!
    @ Linda – thanks and I thought it was amazing also! Feel bad using someone else’s video but was too interesting not to. I will let you know when it all happens!
    @ Jayne – tell me about it!
    @ naturegirl – thanks so very much and it getting harder and harder to do different things! I try to keep it kid friendly!
    @ Ann – thanks and this is one of the best times of the year! Thanks for sharing Ann and maybe this year you can write something for the paper on the big migration?

    6 March 2008 at 8:49 am

  18. Tom! Wow.

    Thank you.

    I got teary watching the frog coming back to life. Go figure. Wow.

    You’ve given me a new level of appreciation for the tenacity of life.

    6 March 2008 at 9:59 am

  19. Marg

    That was amazing!

    6 March 2008 at 10:49 am

  20. Cool – can’t wait to see what you come up with when they “spring” forth!

    6 March 2008 at 11:23 am

  21. Only a face a mother could love Tom 🙂

    6 March 2008 at 4:03 pm

  22. Mel

    That’s an odd looking frog, but cool 🙂
    I’ll wait for this year’s migration post to see the million pics and read the stories.

    6 March 2008 at 4:46 pm

  23. That was definitely one of the most interesting things I’ve ever learned!! Thanks so much for sharing the video. 🙂

    6 March 2008 at 6:04 pm

  24. @ Cathy – aww, glad you appreciated this post! That means a great deal to me! Thanks
    @ Marg – thanks
    @ Adam – I am always looking for something new to post! Thanks
    @ Bernie – LOL! Thanks
    @ Mel – thanks and it is so much fun to be involved in.
    @ Heather – Isn’t it? I have been sitting on this video for a while and figured it is time to post! Thanks

    6 March 2008 at 8:26 pm

  25. I love when we start hearing the frogs in springtime. Wonderful post, Tom!

    7 March 2008 at 3:30 pm

  26. Wow! We had a little pool of wood frogs near our camp (actually they are probably still there) and I loved to hear them call in the early spring, but this freezing business was all new to me. Thanks!

    7 March 2008 at 5:00 pm

  27. Are those the frogs that make kind of a twangy “bonk” sound when they sing?

    7 March 2008 at 7:08 pm

  28. @ Lisa – thanks and love this time of the year!
    @ threecollie – isn’t that crazy stuff . . all new to myself! Thanks
    @ Dave – nope, these guys are not bull frogs! Thanks!

    8 March 2008 at 11:42 pm

  29. Sounds like one of the premiere events of the spring season. I must remember to RSVP.

    10 March 2008 at 2:24 am

  30. Grace

    I have to smile 🙂 when I remember that the herps will be out in just 3 more weeks!

    11 March 2008 at 11:17 pm

  31. Tom, you never cease to amaze me with your wealth of information!! Beautiful shots!!

    14 March 2008 at 12:04 am

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