An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Green Frogs Mating & Laying Eggs

6-14-16  green frogs 008The loose banjo string call of the Green Frog is a familiar sound near wetlands this time of year.  Males (to the right in photo, with bright yellow throat) have been busy serenading females (to the left in photo, with white throat), in an attempt to breed with one.  Female Green Frogs select their mate, a choice which is based partially on the suitability of the male’s territory (underwater plants are a plus).  After inspecting several males’ territories at night, the female chooses one and slowly approaches him, turning to face away from him as their bodies come in contact.  External fertilization takes place as he clasps her while she lays her eggs (known as “amplexus”).

Unlike Wood Frog eggs that are laid in clumps, or Spring Peepers’ individually-laid eggs, Green Frog eggs are laid in a loose cluster that often floats on the water’s surface (see photo) or is draped on underwater plants.  Each cluster usually consists of 1,000 to 5,000 eggs that hatch in three to five days.  Females sometimes return to breed a second time with a different mate, in which case the second egg clutch is usually smaller, consisting of about 1,000 to 1,500 eggs.

The larval, or tadpole, stage of a Green Frog lasts from 3 to 22 months, which explains why you might have already seen large Green Frog tadpoles this summer.

(Outstanding theories were submitted on yesterday’s mystery. Be sure to read comments!)

Naturally Curious is supported by donations. If you choose to contribute, you may go to http://www.naturallycuriouswithmaryholland.wordpress.com  and click on the yellow “donate” button

Advertisements

4 responses

  1. Alice Pratt

    That’s almost a LOT of cute little tadpoles!

    June 15, 2016 at 7:45 am

  2. Suzanne

    Bingo! Just as I was opening up this monrning’s blog within earshot of our small pond, I noticed the first banjo plunk of the season. A lovely sound, punctuating veery, red eyed vireo, redstart, and other birds song.

    June 15, 2016 at 7:47 am

  3. SONYA WULFF

    what does the duration of the larval stage depend upon…that’s a large span!

    June 15, 2016 at 12:56 pm

    • What an excellent question, Sonya, and one to which I do not know the answer. I will try to find out!

      June 15, 2016 at 3:24 pm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s