Frog Information and Facts
This goes without saying, but here at Stuffed Safari we love animals. Not just the stuffed ones either. Everyone who works here owns at least one pet, and most of us more. When we’re not busy selling stuffed animals, we love to learn about the real-life counterparts to the plush toys. That’s why we decided to start The Wild Side. It’s a blog series that gives captivating information about some of our favorite animals. Explore some educational facts with us. This week we learn about the frog. This post is packed full of frog information!
What’s an Amphibian?
First, some frog information for you: frogs are amphibians. The word ‘amphibian’ comes from an Ancient Greek word meaning “both kinds of life.” While once used to describe any animal capable of living on both land and water (such as seals or otters), taxonomists now use it to classify specific animals. Frogs, toads, salamanders, and caecilians belong to the Amphibia class, but to different Orders.
Amphibians make their homes in all kinds of places. Whether arboreal, terrestrial, fossorial, or freshwater aquatic systems, one thing to look for is water. While some species developed adaptations, the majority begin their lives as larvae living in water. In early life they swim with tails and breathe water with gills. As they mature, they undergo a metamorphosis to develop lungs to breathe air, and legs to walk. Using their skin as a secondary respiratory surface, amphibians breathe through their skin as well. Some small terrestrial salamanders and frogs use this as their sole way of respiration; they don’t even have lungs!
Moving on to Frogs!
Now, moving on to some frog information to make you hop. Nearly 5,000 recorded species of frogs account for more than 80% of the amphibians out there. Frogs live almost everywhere and in more varieties, colors, and sizes than one can imagine. Starting with the staples, frogs possess wide bodies with no tail, bulging eyes, a forked tongue, limbs folded underneath. Frogs’ glandular skin secretes chemicals. These chemicals range from leaving a bad taste in your mouth, to being toxic or even deadly. Their skin varies in color from dappled gray, brown, and green to every color of the rainbow. As a rule, the more colorful a frog’s skin, the more toxic. This adaptation helps them ward off predators. Predators adapt too, however, but when bright skin and toxic secretions prove insufficient, frogs keep another ace up their sleeve.
By Land, by Air, and by Water
Frogs jump; they jump far and fast. Jumping comes naturally to frogs with legs so big and strong they account for 17% of their body weight. Relative to their body size, frogs are some of the best jumpers in the animal kingdom. The striped rocket frog, for example, only measures two inches in length, but can leap six and a half feet—more than fifty times its body length! That’s the equivalent of a six-foot-tall man jumping from one side of a football field to another in a single bound.
On the end of every common frog you will find a degree of webbing, making them excellent swimmers. The extent of webbing between their toes depends on how much time a species spends near or in the water. When pursued by a predator, frogs most often make for water in hopes to find refuge. Frog species living away from bodies of water adapt specialized digits allowing them to climb trees or burrow underground. Arboreal (that means they live in trees) frogs have less webbing, thicker digits, and large toe pads to grip as they jump from one branch to another. Some arboreal frog species living in tropical rain forests maintain such extensive webbing between their toes they can glide through the air.
Frogs vs. Toads
Frog information to start a heated debate? I’m so glad you asked! What is the difference between a frog and a toad? The truth is, all toads are frogs, but all frogs aren’t toads. Wait? What?! That’s right, the bumpy, warty exterior of certain species of frogs compared to the smooth exterior of others leads us to draw a difference between the two. We call the smooth ones ‘frogs’ and the bumpy, warty ones ‘toads’, but at the end of the day, both are frogs. They just have different adaptations.
Finally, we find frogs featured in folklore, fairy tales, and pop culture. Portrayed in a variety of ways, some see frogs as friendly and entertaining, while others see them as villainous. You might recognize Kermit the Frog from The Muppets and Sesame Street. This singing, dancing puppet has won over many. Recall the fairy tale The Frog Prince. An age-old tale of a handsome prince transformed by magic into an ugly frog, only to be rescued later by a princess daring enough to give him a kiss. Some European folklore associated frogs and toads with witches. They claimed witches used frogs to brew malicious potions from their skin secretions.
At Stuffed Safari, we are proud to carry a wide variety of Stuffed Frogs and Plush Frogs. Whether you’re looking for a mini stuffed frog, a frog puppet, or a jumbo stuffed frog, I think our selection and variety speaks volumes of our love for these wondrous creatures. Check out our selection and bring home a plush frog companion of your own.
I hope you enjoyed this step into The Wild Side with frog information. Subscribe to our blog to learn more about animals in the future. Feel free to leave any comments or questions in the comment section below. And, as always, thank you for reading.