Bullfrogs

That sound you hear? Kind of like a moo of a cow, but not quite?

Bullfrogs.

These frogs are common in this part of western Virginia, found in freshwater ponds, lakes and marshes and recognizable by their trademark baritone honk. Listen to a recording of one here: http://www.virginiaherpetologicalsociety.com/amphibians/frogsandtoads/frog-calls/American%20bullfrog%20-%20track01.wav

Bullfrogs are the largest of all the frogs found in North America, growing as long as 8 inches and weighing up to 1.5 pounds. A typical bullfrog is about the size of a teacup and is green or gray-brown with brown spots.

Female lay as many as 20,000 eggs at once. You might see the eggs clustered together, floating on the surface of a pond.

Unlike some frogs that mostly eat insects, bullfrogs are carnivores – they’ll eat just about anything they can fit in their mouths, including mice, fish, birds, snakes, turtles and even other frogs. (They do like bugs, too, though.) They don’t chew – if a bullfrog spots a tasty mouse, it’ll swallow it whole.

They can be poisonous to other animals, as they emit toxic secretions from their glands. So you don’t want to let a dog get a hold of one. But bullfrogs can be beneficial too – they keep down the mosquito and insect population.

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