Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Wood Frog

Of the Wood Frog, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources writes, “Who is that masked frog?” The frog’s color ranges from brown to black or reddish-brown. I found this individual in our water feature on 3 June 2017. My first reaction was, “Whoa, that isn’t a Leopard Frog!”

Wood Frogs breed in the spring, often even before the snow melts. This frog is remarkably adapted to life in the Northwoods. They overwinter in leaf litter. They tolerate partial freezing of their body fluids. In the winter, according to the DNR, they stop breathing and their hearts stop beating. They produce antifreeze to keep their cells from freezing. As a result, this is the only frog found north of the Arctic Circle. Their range slides southeast from Alaska and most of Canada to northern Idaho, central Minnesota, and much of the northeastern United States.

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