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Species Description

Mountain Chorus Frog

Pseudacris brachyphona


Classification

Phylum: Chordata
Subphylum: Vertebrata
Class: Amphibia
Order: Anura
Family: Hylidae

Description

Brown to olive green, with two thick dark stripes from the shoulder to the thigh. These curve inward in the middle of the back and resemble a set of parentheses or an irregular "X" if the stripes touch. Occasionally the markings are broken into spots. The dark triangle-shaped marking on the head, characteristic of Chorus Frogs and Cricket Frogs, is present. The base of the triangle is between the eyes, and the apex points down the back. The upper lip of the mouth usually has a white stripe. The belly and inner thighs are whitish and may have a yellow tint. A small frog, 2.5 - 3.8 cm (1 - 1.5 in) long.

Life Cycle

This is a winter breeder. The females lay eggs as early as December and continue until April. Several small clumps of 10 - 50 eggs are laid in shallow (often temporary) pools. A female can lay up to 300 eggs in a season. This is a secretive, nocturnal frog rarely seen except during the breeding season. It eats insects and other small invertebrates. It is found in moist wooded areas at elevations up to 3,500 feet. Ditches, seeps, and shallow wetlands are preferred habitats. It will move overland and can be found well away from water. The Bullfrog may prey upon the Mountain Chorus Frog.

Range

In Georgia this frog is only known from the north central area around Ellijay.

Conservation Status

This is an uncommon frog with a very limited distribution in Georgia. North Carolina lists this frog as a species Of Special Concern. Habitat preservation is crucial to maintain its populations. Preserving forest wetlands will protect breeding sites.

Similar Species

The Upland Chorus Frog has three stripes on its back. The Spring Peeper has an "X" on its back but does not have a striped upper lip.