1. Archive

Green frog

What is it? It is a frog 3 to 4 inches long when sitting, and four inches longer with its legs stretched. It has a slim waist. Its top half is greenish; its bottom half is brownish, and its belly is yellowish. That's the same combination of colors people use to make camouflage clothes.

What does it do? It likes to sit on the edge of ponds, where it blends completely with the scenery. It waits for mosquitoes, mayflies, insect larva, dragonflies _ just about anything that can fit in its mouth. When an insect comes near, the frog flicks out its long tongue and grabs it.

How long is its tongue? It is 3 inches long. (Imagine having a tongue almost as long as you are when you're sitting down!) It also can snatch prey using only its mouth.

What eats it? The great blue heron, a large bird, and many snakes like to eat green frogs.

Where does it live? The green frog lives in most parts of the United States, including Hawaii, and southern Canada.

What does it sound like? The male's mating call sounds like banjo made with a shoebox and rubber band. A lot of frogs will scream if you try to grab them, but a green frog won't. It will just jump away.

What are the female's eggs like? Neat. They look like a slimy mass the size of a small fist. The female lays them on a water plant in spring. After the tadpoles hatch, they take a full year to develop and spend the winter at the bottom of ponds. In spring, they become frogs. Then they sit at the edge of ponds and wait.

_ Patricia Chargot, Knight-Ridder Newspapers

Source: Brad Perkins, Leslie Science Center, Ann Arbor, Mich.