Western Chorus Frog

Western chorus frog

(Pseudacris triseriata)

Features

  • A small tree frog rarely more than 3cm in head-body length, more elongated than other tree frogs with very small toe pads
  • Brown above and off-white on underside; dark stripe running through eye and down side of body; three additional dark stripes down back which may be broken into dashes or spots
  • Small tadpoles with transparent fins covered in small dark flecks
  • Emerge early spring and begin calling while some ice is still on breeding ponds
  • Call similar to sound of a running fingernail down the teeth of a plastic comb

Status

In April 2008, COSEWIC divided the Chorus Frog into two populations (Pseudacris triseriata and Pseudacris maculatum). The Great Lakes/St. Lawrence – Canadian Shield population (Pseudacris triseriata) was designated as Threatened by COSEWIC, but has not yet been approved by council, therefore is not listed on the SARA list.  This should be up for review in the near future.  It is listed as “not at risk” by the province of Ontario.

Range

found in the lowlands of southern Ontario and southwestern Quebec (COSEWIC, 2008)

Threats

The most significant threat to P. triseriata in Canada is destruction or fragmentation and depreciation of habitat from urbanization and intensified agriculture which leaves populations less connected and more vulnerable to local extinction.  Other threats include road mortality, pesticides, and acid rain.  Although counter-intuitive, reforestation of abandoned agricultural lands and breeding ponds by secondary succession also causes habitat loss (COSEWIC, 2008)

Protection

In Ontario, aside from the 10% of its habitat that is located in protected wildlife areas, the Western Chorus Frog is not protected by any legislation (COSEWIC, 2008).  Protection of habitat is critical to the survival of the Western Chorus Frog.

References

Royal Ontario Museum: Western Chorus Frog

Guelph University: Western Chorus Frog

Ontario Natural Heritage Information Centre: Western Chorus Frog

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