Frogs belong to the order Anura and are broadly classified as amphibians; they are one of the earliest links to the fact that all life originated in water before it made its way onto land. There are thousands of frog species, some of which are endemic to one particular area only; what puzzles most biologists is the sheer variation in morphological and behavioral features of some of these frogs. In all, they make for an interesting species and here’s a little bit of nugget, not all frogs can croak and the one that does it the loudest happens to be the bullfrog. It’s time that we took a closer look at the frog and its unique life cycle.
- Egg: When frogs mate, which can depend on the season and the immediate environment, the male frog often clambers onto the back of the female, reaches around and clasps her waist tightly. The coitus can take a while and can even last for days but generally, takes place mostly in an aquatic environment. It is around this time that the female starts to lay her eggs and as she lays them, the male (still on her back) fertilizes the lot. Usually, most female frogs lay all their eggs at once in a single mass, and are covered with a jellylike substance which both protects them and even serves as nourishment after the tadpoles hatch. Female frogs are known to lay over 4000 eggs at a time so as to make up for any loss that could occur due to predation or other reasons. Depending on the species, the water temperature and on the species, these eggs can take anywhere from 6 to 21 days to hatch into tadpoles.
- Tadpole: A tadpole is extremely tiny and quite fragile; once it hatches out of the egg, it consumes the part of the egg yolk still attached to its belly and they are able to breathe in water. Tadpoles come loaded with a little tail and gills which make this possible; as the tadpoles move about – they consume small organisms and even attack other tadpoles. Eventually, they grow larger and in the process, develop hind legs and later after that, front legs. It undergoes this metamorphosis in a matter of days and the process is considered complete when the hind tail completely disappears. This process, depending on the species can take anywhere from a few weeks to months. It should also be pointed out that the tadpole will shed their skin several times as they grow and this would, in all likelihood be consumed by the tadpole. Guess, the ‘waste not, want not’ philosophy comes in handy.
- Frog: By 12 to 16 weeks, an adult frog would have emerged; now it has to seek out and explore its immediate environment and source adequate nourishment. And it is only a matter of time before they hearken to the mating call and the life cycle begins all over again.
Frogs are an interesting species and they often come with interesting defense mechanisms to protect themselves. In fact, frogs contain one of the most potent naturally occurring toxins in the wild and even merely touching this frog without adequate protection can fell a man.
Incoming search terms:
- the life cycle of a frog
- frogs life cycle eggs
- new life cycle of frog
- life cycle of a frog
- life cycle of the frog
- lifecycle of a frog
- life cycle of frog
- cycle of the frog
- lyfecycle of the frog
- morphological life cycle of amphibians