Saturday, July 16, 2011

Bullfrog Metamorphosis

While exploring the pond where I work I discovered numerous tadpoles in the process of completing their metamorphosis into froglets. These are juvenile bullfrogs and will soon be on their way to adulthood. The first picture shows the froglet with its long tadpole tail still very much visible. 

This second image shows an additional froglet with just a nubbin for a tail. He is much further along on the transformation scale.

Finally, this young froglet has completed his transformation and has lost his tail entirely. There were dozens of these young bullfrogs all over the lily pads. Apparently they were all emerging at once from the water for the final time. Bullfrogs need two years to complete their lifecycle, which makes these youngsters two years old. It will take an additional year or more for them to reach the large size of the adult.

This image is a full grown adult which measures about 5 inches in length from mouth to tail bone. From the look of our pond at the office we are going to have a healthy population of these beautiful frogs....providing of course that the raccoons, turtles, skunks, and birds don't feast on them first. If you would like to learn more about Missouri Bullfrogs you might enjoy a post from last spring Bullfrogs


  1. I have some american bullfrog tadpoles in my fishtank, but my stupid fish ate some bits of their tails! I removed the fish and put him in a separate tank. Do you think the tadpoles will be okay?

  2. heck no they might die you should have never done that you should just put them back in the pond were you found them. dont make the same mistake I made and drop one down the drain. you done messed up.

  3. bullfrogs grow their tails back - Mr. Anonymous should research before stating!