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Amazing Amphibians of Louisiana

Updated on April 13, 2015
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Since the mid-1980s Yvonne has maintained a registered NWF backyard wildlife habitat where a variety of birds, insects and frogs abound.

Frogs, Toads, Salamanders and Newts

Amphibians are an interesting and very important class of animals and there are certainly plenty of them here in Louisiana. We have everything from large Bullfrogs to tiny Tree frogs, Toads that keep the garden free of harmful insects and even secretive Salamanders and Newts.

Nights in the spring are filled with a chorus of trills, croaks, brrrs and even a ribit or two. Amphibians are also an ecological "canary in the coal mine" and the recent rash of mutations and sudden deaths among amphibians has sent up an alarm among biologists throughout the world.

On this page you'll find all sorts of amphibian stuff including information, book recommendations, photographs, posters and even frog apparel and costumes.



Toad and salamander photos are property of Y.L. Bordelon aka naturegirl7.

Wet and Wild Louisiana is filled with Amazing Amphibians of all Shapes and Sizes.

What do you think about Amphibians?

See results

Gulf Coast Toad

Gulf Coast Toad
Gulf Coast Toad

Some Louisiana Frogs and Toads

Gulf Coast Toad (Bufo nebulifer)

Hear the Advertisement call of the male.

Southern Toad (Bufo terrestris)

Southern Toad


Eastern Narrow-mouthed Toad (Gastrophryne carolinensis)

Eastern Narrow-Mouth Toad


American Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana)

American Bullfrog

Source

Bronze Frog (Rana clamitans clamitans)

Bronze Frog Camouflaged

Source

Find more information and pictures of the life cycle of the Bronze Frog on our page, Pictures - Frog Life Cycle in a Water Feature.


Pig Frog (Rana grylio)

Pig Frog


Southern Leopard Frog (Rana sphenocephala utricularia)

Southern Leopard Frog

Cricket Frogs

Eastern Cricket Frog (Acris crepitans crepitans)

Coastal Plain Cricket Frog (Acris gryllus gryllus)

Cricket Frog

I watched as this tiny one leaped up to grab an insect. You can see a leg hanging out of its mouth.
I watched as this tiny one leaped up to grab an insect. You can see a leg hanging out of its mouth.

Treefrogs

Cope's Gray Tree Frog (Hyla chrysoscelis)

Here it's Call.

Common Gray Tree Frog (Hyla versicolor)

Gray Treefrog

Green Tree Frog (Hyla cinerea)

Sounds of the Green Tree Frog.

Green Treefrog

Source


Pine Woods Tree Frog (Hyla femoralis)

Pine Woods Treefrog

Photo is public domain USGS

Frogs and Toads of the Southeast

This is one of the best series of books that I've seen in a while. The information is easy to read and up to date and the illustrations are spectacular. Another plus is the conservation status portion on each entry. If you are interested in learning more about Frogs and Toads of the Southeast, I strongly recommend this book.

The Life Cycle of an Amphibian is Fascinating.

The early part of their life is spent in water. Most frogs and toads mate and lay their eggs in water. The eggs hatch into tadpoles which grow legs, loose their tails and hop out onto the land as tiny replicas of their parents.

Tadpoles by Y.L. Bordelon

Tadpoles by Y.L. Bordelon
Tadpoles by Y.L. Bordelon

An Amphibian's Life Cycle

Most amphibians begin their lives in the water as tadpoles, or larvae, which breathe by means of external gills instead of lungs. At first the tadpole has no definite shape, and no tail can be seen. The mouth is a V-shaped sucker on the underside of the body. As the head grows, a round mouth with a horny rim develops. At the same time, the tadpole grows a flat, fin-like tail. The tiny creature later changes to adult form and breathes at least partly through lungs.

This transformation process is called metamorphosis (from the Greek meta, meaning "change," and morphe, meaning "form"). The larval stage lasts from several weeks to one year, depending on the particular species and upon environmental factors such as temperature and humidity. Certain species of amphibians, particularly among the salamanders, remain in larval form all their lives. This phenomenon is called neoteny.

The larvae of the three orders differ from one another in several ways. The salamander (urodele) larvae are long and slender, with limbs, three pairs of gills, and large mouths. The frogs and toads (anurans), with short trunks and small mouth openings, lack lungs, eyelids, jaws, and legs. They look much more like fishes than like frogs or toads. The Caecilians (order gymnophiona) larvae are limbless and slender and have distinctive gills.

Although a female amphibian is capable of producing thousands of offspring during the course of a lifetime, the general population of amphibians remains about the same. This is because during the process of metamorphosis many die and others are destroyed by predators.

Metamorphosis

Metamorphosis alters the feeding and breathing habits of an animal as well as its physical shape. Amphibians change from gill breathers to lung breathers. They also change from plant eaters to meat eaters. Adults eat insects or small animals, especially mollusks, worms, and other amphibians. Some frogs also eat small mammals and birds.

Most amphibians reach maturity at three or four years. They breed for the first time about one year after metamorphosis.

Most amphibians lay their eggs in a moist place. Frogs and toads mate in water and lay their eggs in a stream, pond or pool. Frog eggs are laid in a clump. Toad eggs are laid in a long necklace-like string.

Each year, after the spring and summer rains, the frogs and toads in the surrounding woods come alive with a chorus of mating songs. They take advantage of the low areas where water has collected to lay their eggs.

Many gather in the water that collects in the low spots in our primitive road that goes to the Tchefuncte River. Many times we have collected hundreds of tadpoles and moved them to more permanent water holes to save them from sure death as the waters receded.

Tadpoles photo by Y.L. Bordelon

When the road floods, the low areas are covered with groups of tadpoles like these. With all of the mosquitoes in our area, we hate to loose any potential frogs or toads.

Reference: See More Information and Facts About the Life Cycle of Amphibians

The Pollywog

by Shirley R. Williams

A fat pollywog

In a pool in the bog

Began to feel frightfully queer.

His body felt strange,

But he didn't have pains,

He only felt solemn and drear.

His rusty black coat

Got white at the throat

And speckled with green on the back.

His tail shrank and shrank

Then he crawled on the bank

And found that he made a queer track.

There were four legs so neat

With lovely webbed feet

Grown right to that fat pollywog.

And the first time he spoke

He cried with a croak,

"Mercy me, I've turned into a frog!"

Reference: Poetry Place Anthology, Instructor Books

Save the Frogs

Source

Frog Eggs in New Pond with LA Irises

Frog Eggs in New Pond with LA Irises
Frog Eggs in New Pond with LA Irises

Amphibians in Danger YouTube Vid

Vanishing Amphibians

All over the world, scientists are racing to save many species of amphibians from extinction. Numbers were already down as a result of habitat loss, pollution and climate change, but now an exotic fungus (amphibian chytrid fungus) is nailing the lid on the coffin for many amphibians. But there is a sliver of hope. Through research and rescues, scientists are helping some species that were on the brink of extinction. The April, 2009 issue of National Geographic Magazine gives a detailed description of the problem and hopefully, the cure.

While you're there, reading the article from National Geographic, be sure to check out the Puzzle Pages of Frogs and other animals. They're lots of fun and would be great for the kids.

Frog Sounds Poll

Do you live where you can hear the frogs croaking at night?

See results

Herping with Dylan - Frog Calls

Good footage of several different species of North American frogs calling in a wetland area in Illinois.

Calls of Frogs and Toads

Frog and Toad Plush Toy

Your little one will love to snuggle with Frog while listening to the Frog and Toad books.

Frog and Toad Books - by Arnold Lobel

Help your child learn to read with the hilarious adventures of Frog and Toad.

Save the Frogs Save the Planet

Source

Bullfrog YouTube Vid

Salamanders and Newts of Louisiana

There are about 350 species of salamanders that occur in the temperate areas of the world. Of these about 23 species occur in Louisiana.

Description and Habits

These amphibians have long tails and elongated bodies both during the larval stage and throughout their adult life. The order Caudata (Salamanders and Newts) is a very diverse one. Some have only two limbs; some are aquatic and may or may not retain external gills and fins; and some newts have rough, dry skin.

Red Eft Salamander

Source

Red Eft Salamander Nature Photo Poster Print by SmilinEyesTreasures

Some species of this group are very secretive and dwell in subterranean tunnels except during the breeding season, however, most live in moist, forested areas and hide by day in holes, under leaf or bark litter or under stones and logs. The larvae look somewhat like the adults but have external gills, fins on the tail, lidless eyes and differences in the skin and skull morphology. Because of these similarities between larvae and adult, the metamorphosis is less dramatic than that of frogs and toads. Both adults and larvae are carnivores.

Reproduction

Some salamanders lay jelly-like eggs in water like frogs, but most deposit their eggs in moist places on land. When eggs are laid on land, the larvae often has very large, bushy gills. Some primitive caudates (salamanders) fertilize eggs like anurans (frogs and toads), but most members of this family have a truly remarkable method of sperm transfer and fertilization. Most courtships begin with the males performing elaborate nudging and posturing with the females. Eventually the males deposit small, stalk like structures called spermatophores, which are produced from glands at the base of the tail. The spermatozoa is contained in a gelatinous (jelly-like) cap located on the top part of the spermatophore. The females use her cloacal lips to pick up the spermatophores or the gelatinous cap and the spermatozoa are then stored for anywhere from a few days to a few months in a special chamber called the spermatheca, located in the roof of her cloaca. When the eggs are laid, they pass through the spermatheca and the spermatozoa are released to fertilize the eggs.

Dwarf Salamander
Dwarf Salamander

Dwarf Salamander, Eurycea quadridigitata photo is public domain, USGS

Louisiana Salamander Species List

Amphiumas, Sirens and Mudpuppies

Three-toed Amphiuma, Amphiuma tridactylum

Two-toed Amphiuma, Amphiuma means photo is public domain.

Western Lesser Siren, Siren intermedia nettingi

Gulf Coast Waterdog, Necturus beyeri

Red River Waterdog, Necturus louisianensis

Two Toed Amphiuma

Two-toed Amphiuma , Amphiuma means


Mole Salamanders and Newts

Spotted Salamander, Ambystoma maculatum

Marbled Salamander, Ambystoma opacum

Mole Salamander, Ambystoma talpoideum

Small-mouthed Salamander, Desmognathus auriculatus

Eastern Spotted Newt, Notophthalmus viridescens

Small Mouthed Salamander

Small-mouthed Salamander, Desmognathus auriculatus


Woodland Salamanders

Eastern Tiger Salamander, Ambystoma tigrinum

Southern Dusky Salamander, Desmognathus auriculatus

Spotted Dusky Salamander, Desmognathus conanti

Southern Two-lined Salamander, Eurycea cirrigera

Three-lined Salamander, Eurycea guttolineata

Dwarf Salamander, Eurycea quadridigitata

Four-toed Salamander, Hemidactylium scutatum

Louisiana Slimy Salamander, Plethodon kisatchie

Mississippi Slimy Salamander, Plethodon mississippi

Southern Red-backed Salamander, Plethodon serratus

Webster's Salamander, Plethodon websteri

Gulf Coast Mud Salamander, Pseudotriton montanus flavissimus

Southern Red Salamander, Pseudotriton ruber bioscai


Eastern Tiger

Eastern Tiger Salamander, Ambystoma tigrinum


Reference: Jeff Boundy, herpetologist with the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and Dundee and Rossman, The Amphibians and Reptiles of Louisiana.

Herping with Dylan -- Small-Mouths and Tigers and Spottys

Tiny Cricket Frog

© 2008 Yvonne L. B.

Hop on Over and Leave Us a Note.

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Always always I try to protect frogs where ever I can and I don´t like to see people hurting them.

    • Xpeyur profile image

      Xpeyur 4 years ago

      Thanks for a lovely webpage. Love animals, moist ones just as well.

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image

      ElizabethJeanAl 5 years ago

      They do well in the warm climates.

    • profile image

      cmadden 5 years ago

      Amazing, attractive amphibious account!

    • jed78 profile image

      jed78 5 years ago

      Nice lens

    • profile image

      anilsaini 6 years ago

      hey great fact

    • Anthony Altorenna profile image

      Anthony Altorenna 6 years ago from Connecticut

      Facinating! I especially like salamanders, and we have several different species in the woodlands surrounding our home.

    • pimbels lm profile image

      pimbels lm 6 years ago

      Great lens, thank you. Beautiful pictures.

    • Philippians468 profile image

      Philippians468 6 years ago

      i love how the frogs will start croaking after the showers! quite a symphony! cheers

    • kguru1979 lm profile image

      kguru1979 lm 6 years ago

      Brilliant collection of frogs and toads....!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      thanks!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      nice pics!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      im using this for my report. it was a lot of help thank you so much1:)

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Great lens. Thank you.

    • JoyfulPamela2 profile image

      JoyfulPamela2 7 years ago from Pennsylvania, USA

      I love all of the cool photos that you have! I'll add this to my amphibians unit. Thanks! =)

    • VarietyWriter2 profile image

      VarietyWriter2 7 years ago

      Blessed by a SquidAngel :)

    • profile image

      ShamanicShift 7 years ago

      I got here by searching for "amazing" and I found this Louisiana Amphibians lens amazing enough that I shall now change search terms.

    • oztoo lm profile image

      oztoo lm 7 years ago

      A wonderful lens on your Louisiana amphibians. Great information and pictures.

    • naturegirl7s profile image
      Author

      Yvonne L. B. 8 years ago from Covington, LA

      Most of the frogs and toads hibernate during the cold weather, but some become active during warm spells in Louisiana.

    • Andy-Po profile image

      Andy 8 years ago from London, England

      Excellent lens. Very interesting

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Just checking lenses ouside the Top 100 and back to check out the great pics and info on this lens. Re-blessed!

    • naturegirl7s profile image
      Author

      Yvonne L. B. 8 years ago from Covington, LA

      [in reply to Lowel45] Why not check a guide to amphibians out of the library. Knowing where the salamander came from will help in the identification. I have also provided links and most have photos.

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I have a Salamamder but i do not kno what type it is... :-( he sorta looks like a spotted salamander but he is black and has lots of blue little dots!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I BELIEVE THAT I HAVE A FOSSIL OF A CRICKET FROG. IT'S NOT AN IMPRESSION, BUT A FILLED IN OR WHOLE FROG THAT IS NOW HARD MUD AND SHELL. I CAN EVEN SEE WHERE THE EYE SOCKETS WERE AND THE LEGS AND ONE ARM. THIS IS CAUSING QUITE A STIR AMONG MY FAMILY FRIENDS. THE BELIEVERS, (TEAM "B"), AND THE NON-BELIEVERS(TEAM "NB"). I WOULD LIKE TO SEND PICTURES TO AN EXPERT OR TO ANYONE WHO MIGHT BE ABLE TO HELP M IDENTIFY THIS ODD LITTLE FRIEND OF MINE (I AM VERY PROTECTIVE OF IT!). aT FIRST i THOUGHT IT WAS AN INDIAN ARROWHEAD -BUT I SOON REALIZED IT HAD VISIBLE "PADDED FEET AND ARMS, AND I BELIEVE WHAT WERE LUNGS. ALSO, IN THE BACK (IT'S BOTTOM) -YOU CAN SEE WHERE EGGS MIGHT COME OUT. I ALSO THINK THERE ARE OTHER FROG IMPRESSIONS ON IT) IF YOU CAN HELP ME IDENTIFY . . .PLEASE TOUCH BACK WITH ME ON HOW TO GET PICTURES TO YOU! THANKS FOR YOUR INTEREST AND YOUR HELP WITH MY NEW BFF (I KNOW, "GET A LIFE, LADY!?!"). I HAVE ONE . . .BUT LITTLE DUMB HUMOR VIA PARIS HILTON CAN'T HURT!

    • Lewister profile image

      Susan 8 years ago from Texas

      Congrats on taking the Frog Jumping category this month in The Carnival of Squid! Two weeks in a row for you. Wow!

    • profile image

      das_danger 8 years ago

      I enjoyed your lens, especially the bullfrog video! We have quite a few toads here in NM. Even horned toads.

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      anonymous 8 years ago

      We like to look after frog spawn in an indoor tank and then when the baby frogs are trying to emulate the "Great Escape" we release them into our wildlife pond.

      Lovely lens and Blessed by an Angel.

    • VBright profile image

      VBright 9 years ago

      What memories this brought back! When we were young, my parent's always took us camping and we would catch tree frogs and pond frogs. We always had to let them go, but it was fun catching them!

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image

      ElizabethJeanAl 9 years ago

      Welcome to the Totally Awesome Lenses Group.

      Lizzy

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image

      ElizabethJeanAl 9 years ago

      I like to watch the salamanders that hang out behind my house. There are so many of them. They'll stop and look at me before scurrying away.

      Great lens

      Lizzy

    • evelynsaenz1 profile image

      Evelyn Saenz 9 years ago from Royalton

      Another wonderful lens as usual. Thank you for featuring my Frog Unit Study.