Animal world : Tailed Frog

Tailed Frog

General description

The Tailed frogs  are two species of frogs in the genus Ascaphus.  According to Mittleman and Myers ,1949 one of the Rocky mountain tailed frog its scientific name is Ascaphus montanus and another of  the  Coastal tailed frog its scientific name is Ascaphus truel  Stejneger,1899. They are part of the suborder Archaeobatrachia. They are native to the western United States.

The “tail” is found only in males and is actually part of the cloaca, used to insert sperm into the female during mating.

Tailed frog found in Montana,California, Washington and British Columbia. It lives in cold,fast-flowing and steep mountain streams. Tailed frogs are small 2.5 to 5.0 cm.

Tailed frogs are tiny animals. Its skin can be brown ,tan, reddish, olive green or black in color. It has large head and strong legs. Their eyes have vertical pupils.

Ecological habitat

Tailed frogs ecological habitat is cold, fast-moving streams with cobble stone bottoms. They are mostly aquatic, but adults may emerge during cool, wet conditions to forage terrestrially.


Tailed frogs breeding season lasts from May through September and females deposits their eggs in strings under rocks in fast-moving streams. Total process complete between 24 to 30 hours. Eggs will be released from the females body in July. Tailed frog female produces 35 to 70 pea-sized eggs in the from of gelatinous mass and places them on the underwater stones.

The tadpoles take 1 to 4 years to metamorphos. The tadpoles spend most of their time attached to surfaces with a large sucker. Habitat modification from building and logging activities.

According to a study done in California by Bull and Carter (1996) ” the presence of a tree lined buffer zone around Tailed frog habitat was significantly correlated with Tailed Frog abundance “.

Tailed frog survive from 15 to 20 years in the wild.

Scientific classification

Kingdom : Animalia

Phylum : Chordata

Class :  Amphibia

Order: Anura

Suborder : Archaeobatrachia

Family : Ascaphidae

Genus : Ascaphus

Information collect from


Pre-hatching stages of the Tailed Frog by James George Wernz

Picture courtesy: Facebook




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