Sunday, March 4, 2012

Wood Frog

Nature is full of fascinating annual events.  Some last only a few days and once past, will not return for another year.  Wood Frog breeding is one of those events that can sometimes pass by in just a few days time.  This has been an exceptional year for Wood Frogs, with courtship activities now in their tenth consecutive day.  I’ve forced myself to stop and enjoy every Wood Frog encounter that hoppens by.

Frogs in the water are difficult to view.  They can be scooped up with nets, but that seems an artificial way to view these wild creatures.  I rarely find Wood Frogs away from the breeding pond, so I was excited to find this specimen several hundred feet from the nearest water. 

A frog’s best defense when trapped in the open is to hunker down and remain motionless.  Wood Frog coloration can vary greatly, but the basic color and pattern match that of normal leaf and ground litter.  This individual would have gone unnoticed if it hadn’t jumped when I nearly stepped on it.  After a couple of long jumps, it once again froze in place. 

The frog is a good match for the stray leaves in the grass.  Wood Frogs are supposed to spend their non-breeding period living in the woods.  The nearest woods to the breeding pond is over 500 feet away.  I’m not sure of the frogs are traveling that distance to the pond or if they are making do with the few clumps of trees located nearby.

I was fortunate to have this opportunity to examine such a lovely specimen.  Wood Frog breeding season will soon come to a close.  This may be my last good look until next year.


  1. You have such lovely frog portraits here! :) A friend who lives in your area has a pond on her property. The dogs love to run around the lake and scare the frogs at the shoreline into the pond. I can just imagine what the frogs are thinking....

  2. Hurrah for the frog who quacks like a duck! Thanks for sharing those photos, Steve. My favorite frog.

    BFF- best frog forever!

  3. Hi Lois. I used to do the same thing to the frogs when I was a kid. The difference is that I took so long to circle the pond that the frogs were back on the bank by the time I got all the way around. I would just keep circling and the frogs would keep jumping.

    Hi Cheryl. I noticed that there were no Wood Frogs calling this evening. They may be on their way back to the woods.