Another early breeder is the Western Chorus Frog, distinguished
by three dark lines running down its tan, gray, olive or light brown
back. It also has a light line on its upper lip, but unlike the Wood Frog,
has no dorsolateral folds. It also has slightly enlarged toe tips.
This tiny amphibian is about 0.75 to 1.5 inches long (1.9 to 3.9 cm) but has a voice which can be heard for a half mile! Their breeding cry is "cr-rr-rr-ik" and can be imitated by running a finger over the fine tines of a pocket comb. Breeding in late March through April, each female lays from 500 to 1,500 eggs in discrete gelatinous packets of about 20 to 100. The packets are attached to underwater vegetation. In about three weeks, tadpoles hatch. The tadpoles are algae eaters which grow rapidly and transform to juvenile frogs in about six to eight weeks.
After the breeding season, Western Chorus Frogs can sometimes be found under logs or boards away from the pond, but I was extremely surprised one day to find one three feet up in a prairie grass on a moist day after a rainstorm.
Ellin Beltz email@example.com October 26, 2008