Milk Frogs – Dogs of the Frog World


My photograph from the exhibit “Frogs: A Chorus of Colors” at the AMNH

I pretty much agree with what Linnaeus wrote about frogs, but this summer we did spend a fascinating afternoon at the American Museum of Natural History’s exhibit “Frogs, a Chorus of Color”. The museum has one of the largest collection of frogs in the world and its display of living frogs will be open until January 5, 2014 in case you care to see some of the prettiest and some of the ickiest creatures on earth.

In the center of the exhibit is a big glass case housing teensy, beautiful, poisonous frogs like these dart-poison frogs.


Image from Wikipedia. Click for source.

These gorgeous deadly little guys were endearing, but, then we got to the worst frog of all. The seductive male milk frog.

milk frog

Image from Wikipedia. Click for source.

The museum calls this guy a “Lothario”. This frog is a DOG. He makes a loud sexy love call to lure a female to his puddle of water in a tree. After she releases her eggs and decamps, the male milk frog fertilizes her eggs and then makes another loud sexy love call. Some poor unsuspecting female responds and releases her eggs into his puddle. The male doesn’t fertilize her eggs. He leaves them to be used as food for the first batch of his babies.

Wow, evolution.

PS. If you really want to gross yourself out, read Wikipedia about the 3.2 billion frogs that are consumed as human food each year.

It contains this wonderful information:

“Frog muscle does not resolve rigor mortis as quickly as warm-blooded muscle (chicken, for example), so heat from cooking can cause fresh frog legs to twitch.”



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