green frog

(Rana clamitans)

Conservation Status
green frog
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

     
  NatureServe

N5 - Secure

S5 - Secure

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
           
 
Description
 
 

Green frog is a mid-sized, 2¼ to 3½ long, true frog. It is the second largest frog in Minnesota after only the American bullfrog. Females are only slightly larger than males.

The back (dorsal surface) is smooth to moderately rough and green or brownish-green. It usually has small, irregular, dark spots and is usually brighter colored toward the front. Prominent folds on each side of the back (dorsolateral folds) extend from just behind the disk-shaped membrane covering the ear opening (tympanum) to just over halfway down the back. Another ridge begins just behind the eye and curves downward behind the tympanum.

The side of the face is green. The tympanum on males is larger than the eye. On females it is about the same size as the eye.

The belly is white and often has dark mottling on the throat, jaw, and under the hind legs. Males have a single inflatable vocal sac. It is internal, not visible. The throat on mature males is yellow.

The hind legs have dark horizontal bands. The webbing on the hind feet extends to the tips of the first through third toes, to the second joint on the fourth toe, and not quite to the tip on the fifth toe.

--------------------------------
The description above refers to the northern subspecies, northern green frog (Rana clamitans melanota).

 
     
 

Size

 
 

2¼ to 3½

 
     
 

Voice

 
 

The mating call is usually described as the sound of plucking a loose banjo string, “plunk”. The call is a single note but is often repeated. It can be heard from May through July. No other frogs in Minnesota sound similar.

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
  American bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana) is larger. It lacks a dorsolateral ridge.  
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Semi-permanent or permanent wetlands: large marshes, streams, deep ponds, larger lakes, and roadside ditches.

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Behavior

 
 

Green frogs are often seen on a shore within one quick leap to a body of water. They hunt by sitting still and waiting for prey to cross their path.

 
     
 

Lifespan

 
 

5 to 10 years

 
     
 

Life Cycle

 
 

Adults emerge from hibernation from April to June. Males call from May to July. Mating takes place in late spring or early summer. After mating, the female lays a single floating mass of 1,000 to 5,000 eggs in water. The mass is flat and about 12 in diameter. The eggs hatch in 3 to 7 days, depending on temperature. Most tadpoles overwinter and metamorphose into adults the following spring. Males become sexually active one year after metamorphosis, females 2 or 3 years. Adults hibernate in the mud under debris, under stones, or under water that does not completely freeze.

 
     
 

Tadpole Food

 
 

Organic debris, algae, plant tissue, and minute organisms in the water.

 
     
 

Adult Food

 
 

Insects, crayfish, fish, snails, small snakes, other frogs—any animal that will fit in its mouth.

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

7, 11, 12, 14, 24, 29, 73, 76.

 
  3/27/2018      
         
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common in eastern United States. At the western edge of its range in Minnesota.

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Class Amphibia (amphibians)  
  Superorder Batrachia (amphibians)  
  Order Anura (frogs and toads)  
  Suborder Neobatrachia  
  Superfamily Ranoidea  
 

Family

Ranidae (true frogs)  
 

Genus

Rana  
  Subgenus Aquarana  
       
 

This species is classified as Lithobates clamitans by many print and online sources. In 2006 most North American true frogs were transferred from the genus Rana to the genus Lithobates by Frost et al. The change was controversial and was not accepted by all authorities. In 2008 and 2009 the change was rejected by Stuart, Pauly et al., and other systematic reviews, and in 2009 North American true frogs were returned to their previous classification. Lithobates is once again a subgenus of Rana. ITIS and Amphibian Species of the World continue to use the 2006-08 classification. NCBI and UniProt use the new classification. AmphibiaWeb suggests using the original name followed by the subgenus name in parentheses, in this case Rana (Aquarana) clamitans.

 
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

bronze frog (Rana clamitans clamitans)

northern green frog (Rana clamitans melanota)

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

Lithobates clamitans

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

bronze frog

green frog

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Dorsolateral folds

Two parallel lines, one on each side of the back, of raised glandular skin between the back and the sides of most North American frogs of the family Ranidae.

 

Tympanum

The circular, disk-like membrane that covers the ear opening of some reptiles and amphibians.

 
 
Visitor Photos
 
           
 

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Tina Lonsky

 
 

… from our pond

 
    green frog   green frog  
           
    green frog      
 

Robb

 
    green frog      
 

Brian Blom

 
    green frog      
 

Christa Rittberg

 
    green frog      
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
 
    green frog   green frog  
           
 

Male

 
    green frog   green frog  
           
    green frog      
           
 

Female

 
    green frog      
           
           

 

Camera

     
 
Slideshows
 

Green Frog (Rana clamitans melanota)
Andree Reno Sanborn

  Green Frog (Rana clamitans melanota)  

Rana clamitans (Green Frog)
Allen Chartier

  Rana clamitans (Green Frog)  

Rana clamitans (Green Frog)
John Clare

  Rana clamitans (Green Frog)  
     

 

slideshow

       
 
Visitor Videos
 
       
 

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Other Videos
 
  Green Frog
TheSnakeLibrary
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Jul 31, 2011

Green Frog
(Rana clamitans)

Description: 2 1/8-4 1/4" (5.4-10.8 cm). Green, bronze or brown frog; large external eardrum and prominent dorsolateral ridges that do not reach groin. Typically green on upper lip. Belly white with darker pattern of lines or spots. Male has yellow throat and swollen thumbs.

Subspecies: Bronze (R. c. clamitans), brown or bronze; Carolinas to c. Florida and through the gulf coast states to e. Texas and s. Arkansas.

Northern Green (R. c. melanota), green or greenish-brown; s. Ontario east to Newfoundland, south to North Carolina, west to Oklahoma, and introduced into Canada, the West, and Hawaii.

Voice: Like the twang of a loose banjo string, usually given as a single note, but sometimes repeated rapidly several times.

Breeding: March to August. Eggs are usually laid in 3-4 small clutches attached to submerged vegetation.

Habitat: Lives close to shallow water, springs, swamps, brooks, and edges of ponds and lakes. May be found among rotting debris of fallen trees.

Range: Widespread throughout eastern North America.

Discussion: Primarily nocturnal. Green Frogs are not as wary as many other species of frog. They seldom scream in alarm when caught.

 
  Northern Green Frog (Rana clamitans melanota)
WisCBMnetwork
 
   
 
About

Published on Apr 30, 2012

 
  Green frogs - Rana clamitans (HD)
Bart B. Van Bockstaele
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Oct 17, 2011

Two green frogs (Rana clamitans), a girl and a boy, shot at Brick Works Park in Toronto.

More information shortly on http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/312973

 
       

 

Camcorder

 
 
Visitor Sightings
 
           
 

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  Tina Lonsky
6/5/2021

Location: St Michael, MN

… from our pond

green frog

 
  Robb
7/10/2019

Location: Near Courthouse Lake in Chaska, MN. (Carver County, MN.)

green frog

 
  Brian Blom
8/25/2017

Location: Crow Wing County, Deerwood

green frog

 
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
 
   

 

 

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