Northern Leopard Frog

From Ohio History Central

It's easy to see how the leopard frog (Rana pipiens pipiens) got its name. Most of its brown to green body is covered with black "leopard spots."

The leopard frog can be found in open area such as meadows and fields away from water. For this reason it is also called the "meadow frog" or "grass frog." They will go to water habitats such as Edges of lakes and river, marshes, and wet meadows during the breeding season. They are mainly nocturnal, so during the March to May breeding season you may hear chorus of leopard frogs calling in and around the water in the evening. They are able to sing while totally under the water. A single female lays three to six thousand eggs.

Upon reaching maturity, adults are 2 - 3.5 inches long and may live three years. Their main diet consists of a variety of insects, worms and spiders.

When frightened, it will leap in a zigzag pattern until it reaches the water.

By October, it begins to look for a place on the lake or pond bottom to hibernate.

The leopard frog is a member of the true frog family. Other family members include the bullfrog, green frog and pickerel frog. It is often confused with the smaller, brown pickerel frog, but can identified through habitat. The leopard frog is found in open areas away from water while the pickerel frog is found near heavily wooded streams.

The leopard frog is common throughout Ohio except for the lake plain area east of Cleveland where they have become rare.

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