Frogs and Toads

A Pine Barrens Tree frog with its chin blown out in a bubble. Green with re stripes down it's sid                                                           This is a Pine Barrens tree frog, one of the 13 types of frogs that you can find in New Jersey.
                                                                 This is our rarest tree frog in New Jersey and one of the most unusual sounding frogs in the state.
                                                                                                                            They almost sound like a duck!

Almost everyone has seen a frog or toad at a park or in their yard.  They are very easy to recognize because of their shape – they have big wide mouths and big heads that blend into their flat bodies (they have no necks!).  Frogs have smoother skin and they are usually found in the water or very close to it.  Toads have rougher skin and they can be found farther from water, although sometimes they live near water too.  We have 13 types of frogs in New Jersey and three types of toads.  

Frogs and toads are predators – they eat other animals, especially smaller creatures like insects, worms and slugs.  Frogs and toads don’t have any real teeth!  Frogs can have tiny ridges that look like teeth.  They can’t chew and they have very big mouths, so they gulp their food into their mouths in one big bite and swallow it whole.  Frogs and toads can be active during the day, but many types are more active at night.  Most species of frogs and toads make sounds (usually at night) which they use to find each other.  These sounds are different for each species.  Carpenter frogs make a sound like a metal hammer hitting a nail.  Eastern grey tree frogs make a really loud trilling sound (it’s a bunch of really fast sounds almost like a drummer playing REALLY fast), and the Pine Barrens tree free sounds very much like a quacking duck. 

Frogs and toads both have their babies (tadpoles) in water, and most of them need very clean water to survive and be healthy.  If a pond gets too salty or dirty from a nearby road, it can mean that they will disappear from that pond.  It’s very important for our water to be clean!   Frogs may eat insects and other creatures, but they are also important food for many kinds of birds, like herons and egrets. 

A grey and black Fowler's toad.                                                                    This is a Fowler’s toad.  It’s the only type of common toad in southern New Jersey.

If you want to learn more about frogs and toads, check out the link below!

Check out this video – It teaches you about frogs and toads and has some fascinating pictures and facts!


Let’s also try a craft where you can learn to make a frog:

Paper Roll Frogs
This is an easy paper roll frog craft made using our favorite “squash and cut” technique. Printable shape template included.
A frog craft made from a paper towel rollInstructions:

You will need

• An empty paper towel roll (or toilet roll)
• This printable frog template (also included at the end of the instructions)
• Acrylic paint
• Googly Eyes
• Craft glue
• Scissors, paintbrush and pen or pencil for tracing the shape

How to:

  1. Print out the template and cut it out
  2. Flatten your paper roll
  3. Trace around the frog shape template, and sketch in the leg line
  4. Cut out the shape, then pop the roll back into a cylinder shape. Bend the legs outwards, and fold the head down and, presto, you have a frog!
  5. Paint your frog and allow to dry, then decorate with spots and googly eyes (or you can paint eyes on). Paint a line down the centre of each leg so that they look like a frogs folded legs.

All done!
**Print the template here**
The paper towel cut into shape and a pair of scissorsThe frog craft is starting to look like a frogThe craft after painting it greenDots painted on the frog to make it look realFrog craft placed on a lily pad cut from construction paper