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Amphibians - Tadpoles 

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Did you know... 

that the word amphibian means "two-lives"?  Amphibians are ectothermic (cold-blooded) animals that begin their life in water with gills and tails.  They then, metamorphose from their juvenile water- breathing form into an adult air-breathing form with lungs and legs, or to a paedomorph that retains some of its juvenile characteristics.  There  are 5,400  different kinds of amphibians.

 

Tadpoles - Life Cycle of a Frog

Seven to ten days after hatching, a tadpole will begin to swim around and feed on algae.  After 4 weeks, the tiny gills are grown over by skin, eventually disappearing.  They have tiny teeth to help them grate food and a long coiled gut that helps them to digest nutrients.  By the fourth week, they are social creatures that interact with each other.

In 6-9 weeks tiny legs begin to sprout and the head becomes more easily recognizable.  Their diet now includes dead insects and plants.  The arms bulge with the elbow growing out first.  By 9 weeks, the tadpole looks like a small frog with a long tail.

At 12 weeks, the tail stub has shrunk and the tadpole now looks like a miniature version of an adult frog.  Soon it will leave the water.  Depending upon the altitude, water and food supply, the completed growth cycle takes between 12 to 16 weeks to complete.

All of the images of the large tadpoles below are of the American Bullfrog.  Note:  The name "American" Bullfrog does not indicate where this species is found.  In fact, these frogs are often simply known as "bullfrogs" and can be found all over North America and other parts of the world.

 

legless tadpoles of american bullfrog in water

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog in water - 1

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large american bullfrog tadpole with tail.

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog in water - 2

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two legless american bullfrog tadpoles in water

Legless tadpoles of American Bullfrog in water resting on rocks - 4

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american bullfrog tadpole beside water reed

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog leaning on water plant -  5

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american bullfrog tadpole leaning on reed

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog leaning on water plant -  6

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legless tadpole of american bullfrog

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog swimming in water -  7

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legless tadpole of american bullfrog

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog swimming in water -  8

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american bullfrog tadpole holding on to reed

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog swimming in water -  9

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hand holding large american bullfrog

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog being held in a young child's hand - 10

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adult hand holding american bullfrog tadpole

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog being held in a young child's hand - 11
If you look carefully, there are tiny bulges where the hind legs will soon emerge.

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Large - 3264 x 2448 -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

child holding american bullfrog tadpole

Legless tadpole of American Bullfrog being held in a young child's hand - 12
If you look carefully, there are tiny bulges where the hind legs will soon emerge.

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Large - 4608 x 3456 -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

large bullfrog tadpole on man's hand

Tadpole - 3

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hind legs of american bullfrog tadpole

Tadpole of American Bullfrog being held in an adult male's hand - 13

Notice how much the tadpole has grown.  Keep in mind that it is now being held in the palm of an adult man.  See the new hind legs that have emerged?

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

Large - 4608 x 3456 -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

hand holding american bullfrog tadpole with small legs

Tadpole of American Bullfrog being held in an adult male's hand - 14

Notice how much the tadpole has grown.  Keep in mind that it is now being held in the palm
of an adult man.  See the new hind legs that have emerged?

Medium - 640 x 480  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

Large - 4608 x 3456 -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

american bullfrog tadpole in water with large hind legs

Tadpole of American Bullfrog with large hind legs in water - 15
The hind legs are now almost completely developed.  Even the fins are easily recognizable.

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Large - 4608 x 3456 -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

Tadpoles in water.

Tadpoles of American Bullfrog with developed hind legs in water - 16

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American Bullfrog tadpole in water.

Tadpoles of American Bullfrog with developed hind legs in water - 17

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Two bullfrog tadpoles.

Tadpoles of American Bullfrog with developed hind legs in water - 18

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American Bullfrog tadpoles with hind legs.

Tadpoles of American Bullfrog with developed hind legs in water - 19

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Bullfrog tadpole with hind legs.

Tadpoles of American Bullfrog with developed hind legs in water - 20

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Large - 3909 x 2931  -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

Mature American bullfrog tadpole\

Tadpoles of American Bullfrog with developed hind & front legs - 21

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Large - 3006 x 4011   -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

woman holding large american bullfrog

Large American Bullfrog - 17
From a tiny tadpole grew this large specimen found in Northern Ontario.

Medium - 480 x 640  Right click on above image and chose "save as".

Large - 2448 x 3264 -  Now only available upon request.

 

 

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Amphibian 
Fun Facts

 

- Amphibians are divided into three groups:  Newts & Salamanders; Frogs & Toads; and Caecilians.

 

 

- Caecilians are amphibians that don't have arms or legs.  They look like snakes or worms.

- There are 5,000 - 6,000 amphibians species known today.

 

 

- The term "amphibian" means "two-lives" - one in the water and one on land.

 

 

 

 

- More than 75% of all toad and frog species in the world live in tropical rainforests.

 

 

- Toads have dry, bumpy skin while frogs have smooth, clammy skin.

 

 

- The life cycle of an amphibians involves three stages:  egg, larva and adult.

 

 

 



- Frogs breath with their lungs AND through their skin.



 

- Frogs can see forwards, sideways and upwards - all at the same time!

 

 

- According to the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), nearly one-third of all amphibians are known to be threatened or extinct!

 

 

 

 

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