|What is the difference between a frog and a toad|
So, what are the differences between frogs and toads? A very good question indeed or perhaps I should say a tricky one because scientifically, toads are of course members of the frog family.
Be that as it may, there are characteristics that leads them to be kept in their mis-conceived groups and these are listed below:
Generally speaking, when we are consider frogs, we are usually thinking of that group commonly called the 'True Frogs' who are members of the family Ranidae which contains more than 400 species.
These frogs typically have:
1. Two bulging eyes.
2. Strong, long, webbed hind feet that are adapted for leaping and swimming
3. Smooth or slimy skin as frogs tend to prefer damp environments.
4. Frogs tend to lay eggs in clusters.
Frogs from this family can be found on every continent except Antarctica. They are referred to as 'True Frogs' because of their generalized body form and life history. For the purpose of the above question, this is the so-called generic frog.
Members of this family include the bullfrog, common frog, green frog, leopard frog, marsh frog, pickerel frog, and wood frog.
The term toads tends to refer to the 'True Toads' which are members of the family Bufonidae, and contain more than 300 species.
Toads typically have:
1. Stubby bodies with short hind legs which are used for walking instead of hopping.
2. They have warty and dry skin as they usually preferring drier climates.
3. They have parotid (poison) glands behind their eyes.
4. Not that you can see it but the chest cartilage of toads is different also.
Toads tend to lay eggs in long chains, however here are some toads from the Nectophrynoides family which give birth to live young!
True Toads can be found worldwide except in Australasia, polar regions, Madagascar, and Polynesia, although Bufo marinus has been artificially introduced into Australia and some South Pacific islands.
Besides Bufo, the family includes 25 genera, all of which, like the frogs, are anura!
As said before, you need to remember that toads are frogs and the physical distinctions between them can easily become blurred. This is because these features can become mixed or less obvious depending on which frog or toad you are looking at. In fact certain species can legitimately fall into both categories! It is not uncommon, for example, to find a warty skinned frog that isn't a toad, or even a slimy toad! Furthermore, even the 'unseen' differences like cartilage structure has been found to fit both categories!
For related articles click onto the following links:
THE MALAYAN LEAF FROG - Megophrys nasuta
THE WOLVERINE FROG
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