If you think of a frog you probably imagine a green and slimy little creature that lives in a pond. Whilst this may be true of frogs found in the UK, frogs from other parts of the world can be a different matter altogether.
Have you ever heard of poison dart frogs? They get their name because they secrete a toxin to protect themselves from predators. This is extremely poisonous and local tribesmen coat the tips of their darts in it, making them deadly weapons!
There are 170 species of poison dart frogs living in Central and South America. They come in a variety of vivid colours, from bright red to sky blue, to warn other animals that they are poisonous. And, far from living in ponds, they make their homes in the treetops of tropical rainforests. So now you know that not all frogs are the same, let’s find out some facts about frogs:
- Frogs use their eyes to help them swallow. When a frog blinks, its eyeballs are pressed into the mouth, pushing the food down its throat
- The largest frog is the Goliath frog. It can grow up to 33 cm long and weigh as much as 3 kg
- The smallest frog is paedophryne amanuensis, which was not discovered until 2009. It is less than 8mm long, making it the smallest known vertebrate
- Some frogs can live up to 40 years, though in the wild most will die long before they reach this age
- Frogs are carnivores. Most eat insects and other invertebrates but some may eat small reptiles, birds and mammals
- The tongue in most frogs is attached to the front of the mouth, unlike ours which is attached to the back. This allows them to extend it further in order to catch their prey
- Frogs don’t have to drink water. Instead they can absorb it through their skin
- Frogs seldom jump. They only do this when they feel threatened, like when they see a human!
If you are interested in frogs then take a look at Frog Life, the charity whose aim is to protect British amphibians and reptiles. They have loads of information about frogs in the UK and ways in which you can help to protect them. After that, why not hop down to our quiz all about amphibians? See if you can score a perfect 10-out-of-10!