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Blanchard's Cricket Frog

(Acris blanchardi)

Blanchard's Cricket Frog


Cricket Frogs are small, active amphibians that spend most of their time on the open weedy shorelines next to lakes, ponds, and streams. Full-grown adults are less than 1 ½ inches long. The best recognition features (other than size) are the very large hind legs, the moist warty skin, and (if you can catch one to check this!) a pair of distinct white warts bordering the vent (anus). A Cricket Frog can be mostly green, brown, or gray in color and there is usually a backward-pointing dark triangle between the eyes. These frogs are in the treefrog family (Hylidae) but they spend all of their time on the ground or in shallow water and have very tiny toe pads. They are extraordinarily good leapers for their size, but oddly enough when a Cricket Frog jumps out into the water to get away from you he often turns around and swims right back to the water’s edge!

Blanchard’s Cricket Frogs live in the north-central part of the state from the Kentucky River drainage to the Ashland area. The only way to tell a Northern from a Blanchard’s Cricket Frog is by range or DNA analysis. 

Cricket Frogs call day and night from late April into August. Each male frog produces a long series of clicks that sound like two small stones or marbles tapped against each other. A call starts slowly with single clicks but soon the clicks come in 2’s and 3’s followed by a much longer run, finally slowing down at the end.