WHAT IT LOOKS LIKE

The mink frog is a medium sized frog. The body of an adult can be as long as 80 mm. The colour is green with brown patches. Male mink frogs have a much larger ear drum than the females.

Look-alikes: Green frogs and leopard frogs can look like mink frogs. The mink frog can be told from the green frog because it has no stripes on its legs. The leopard frog has black spots all over it.


NAME

The mink frog gets its name because it smells like a mink. The mink is mammal in the weasel family. (If you don't know what a mink smells like, then think of rotten onions.)


WHERE IT LIVES

Mink frogs live along the edges of streams, large ponds and small lakes. They are found in the central part of eastern North America. In Manitoba they are only found in the southeast corner around Whiteshell Provincial Park.

Where it lives in Manitoba.


HABITS

Mink frogs spend most of their time in the water or close to the water's edge. This is one of the kinds of frogs that really does sit on water lily pads . They will rest on lily pads or other things sticking out of the water. They hunt mostly at night and hide during the day. Mink frogs spend winter on the bottom of rivers, ponds or lakes.


FOOD WEB

Adult mink frogs eat insects of many kinds. Most of their food is insects that fly over the pond like dragonflies in the daytime and moths at night.

Many birds and mammals will not eat a mink frog because they taste and smell bad. Snakes are their main enemies. The tadpoles are eaten by fish, snakes, large water insects and shore birds.


LIFE CYCLE

Mink frogs mate and lay eggs in June and early July. They breed in large ponds, streams or along the edges of small lakes.

Mating call of the mink frog:

The females lay their eggs in large bunches attached to the leaves of water plants. Each female can lay 500 eggs. The eggs hatch in 7 days. The tadpoles will not change to froglets until the next summer. They stay a tadpole for more than a year (nearly 400 days). They grow to be very large by their second summer. A mink frog tadpole may be as long as 80 mm. They change into large froglets (about 40 to 50 mm long) in July or August.


NUMBERS

No one knows how many mink frogs may be in Manitoba, but there are lots of them in the parts of the province where they are found. There can be hundreds of them around the edge of a small pond.


SPECIAL THINGS

The mink frog has a bad smell, like a mink or rotten onions, that helps protect it from enemies.

The eyes of a mink frog are further on top of its head than other frogs. This helps it to look up to hunt insects that are flying over its head.


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