Southern Cricket Frog - Acris gryllus dorsalis
Clicking Metal Marbles
Description & Identification:
Small, may reach 1.3" (33mm). Highly variable in color; generally solid brown or gray to greenish, though some may have light tan or bright green markings. When markings occur on the back, a triangular mark should be apparent behind the head and between the eyes. Two dark stripes are present on rear (inside) of thighs. The underside is usually white with some speckling. Skin may be rough, almost warty. Hind legs are long (longer than the northern species) and hind feet are partially webbed (less than the northern species).
Up to 200 eggs may be laid in clumps of 7-10 eggs each or singly attached to submerged vegetation; hatch in 4 or more days, depending upon the water temperature. Tadpoles usually under 1.5" (38mm); back olive to dark buff and belly is pink to salmon colored; tip of tail black with clear fins. Metamorphose in 41-90 days.
Habitat & Behaviors:
Found in all freshwater environments, from temporary puddles to large lakes and rivers. Prefers open or grassy edges from which it retreats into the water when disturbed, then returning quickly back to the shoreline. During the day will actively forage for small insects a good distance from the water. Likewise, they are common prey of water and garter snakes as well as other frogs, fish, and birds.
Chorus frogs do not have webbing on their hind feet. Small toads have parotoid glands behind the eyes. Treefrogs have enlarged toe pads.
A continual "click, click, click" resembling two glass marbles tapping together; all year but most frequently from April into fall. Usually calls from the edge of water or while sitting upon floating vegetation.
This frog has been observed at the following locations. Click on the map to view the data.