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A Guide to the Amphibians
and Reptiles of California





Eggs, Tadpoles and Development  of
American Bullfrog - Lithobates catesbeianus

Shaw, 1802

(= Rana catesbeiana)
 









observation link

 

Eggs
American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole  
A small group of eggs in water in a dish
© Aureliano Gaglione

Egg mass found in late July in Marin County
© Aureliano Gaglione
 
American Bullfrog Tadpoles
American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole
Mature tadpole in water, San Bernardino County Mature tadpole, San Bernardino County Mature tadpole, Yolo County Tadpole out of water, Del Norte County
© Alan Barron
American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpoles American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole
Mature tadpole, Orange County © Jeff Ahrens Group of tadpoles,
San Bernardino County

Very mature 4-legged tadpole, still living in water, but put on land for this photo. This unusually-pigmented bullfrog tadpole was found in Sacramento County © Grayson B. Sandy
A Mature Tadpole Transforms Into A Frog
American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole
Mature tadpole, Merced County
American Bullfrog Tadpole American Bullfrog Tadpole
This is the same tadpole shown in the row above 3 weeks later, just before it left the water and transformed into a frog (in the series shown below.)
 
The following series of pictures shows the American Bullfrog tadpole shown in the two rows above, in full metamorphosis -
it begins to breathe air, gradually loses its tail, and transforms into a juvenile frog with the body of an adult.

Click here to see a larger view
American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile
Metamorph, Day 1
Metamorph, Day 2 Metamorph, Day 3 Metamorph, Day 4
American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile
Metamorph, Day 5 Metamorph, Day 6 Metamorph, Day 7 Metamorph, Day 8
American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile American Bullfrog Juvenile
Metamorph, Day 9
Juvenile, Day 14 Juvenile, Day 29
 
Short Videos
American Bullfrog Tadpoles American Bullfrog Tadpoles    
Although they are quick to swim to the bottom when first approached, American Bullfrog tadpoles will usually calm down and resuface, where they slowly swim, float, and socialize. Mature 4-legged tadpoles at a small pond in Oregon.    

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