Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Backyard Wildlife Series: Balloon Frog

 Dr Abe V Rotor 

Balloon Frog

Uperodon globulosus (U. systoma?)

I don't know your true name, and never did care
ever since I was a child; 
you were, as other kids on the farm, called you
 tukak bat-og  - fat bellied;
our ways parted: I, to school, and you, to where
fantasia had ended;
endangered almost to extinction, I was told;
but down the river bed, 
I found you like the Phoenix bird resurrected,


where I never threaded.  

Uperodon systoma is known under many different common names: indistinct frog, marbled balloon frog, and lesser balloon frog. As the common names suggest, Uperodon systoma have a very stout appearance with a relatively small head. They grow up to 64 mm (2.5 in) in snout–vent length.


It lacks teeth, an unusual feature probably related to their diet that (after metamorphosis) consists mainly of termites and ants, with other insects appearing in smaller numbers. It is suggested that in capturing such small but spatially clustered prey items teeth would not be very useful; instead, the prey are gathered using their tongue. It is a fossorial species that buries itself in soil. These frogs have been observed in a number of habitats, such as dry forests, plains, gardens, and agricultural areas. Adults are only seen during the summer monsoons; otherwise they retreat into the soil. Feeding may be concentrated to rainy nights during the monsoon when termites emerge to swarm. 

Breeding takes place during the monsoon rains when the males call from the banks of streams and paddy fields. Eggs are laid in water where they float. 

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