Crucifix Frog Facts!

Crucifix Frog Facts!

Male Crucifix toad.
Male Crucifix toad. Image credit:Tnarg 12345 at English Wikipedia cc3.0

The crucifix frog is a medium-sized frog, about 1.8 to 2.6 inches (4.5 to 6.5 centimeters) long, with short limbs, large eyes and a round, vibrantly colored body. It has lime green or lemon yellow skin, with dark spots on its back in a pattern that resembles a cross. The crucifix frog is not a very good swimmer — it spends most of its life on land. It is native to Australia, dwelling in the black soil plains areas and semi-arid grasslands.

Distribution of the Crucifix Toad
Distribution of the Crucifix Toad. Image credit: Froggydarb GFDL

Because it lives in such dry areas, most of its life is spent buried underground waiting for the rainy season. To survive for long periods without water, the crucifix frog encases itself in a cocoon. Once the heavy rains start, it will surface and start breeding in temporary ponds. The tadpole’s development cycle is only about 6 weeks long. The young develop very rapidly to reduce the chance of fatality if the ponds start to dry up.

When insects are present, the frog secretes a sticky substance over its skin. This traps the insects and gums up their mouthparts. The frog can later consume the insects when it sheds its skin. This glue-like substance may also act as a deterrent against predators such as snakes and birds.

Crucifix Frogs are featured in the following book:
101 Facts… Desert Animals

The YouTube video below is about Crucifix Frogs. It’s called:
Luring behaviour in the Crucifix Frog, Notaden bennetti by Australian Museum


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