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The Boisterous Bullfrog Makes Quite a Racket

Updated: Sep 12, 2019

You may have learned that frogs say ribbit, but that isn’t exactly true of the American bullfrog.

Photo by Glenn P. Knoblock

Bullfrogs are named for the loud sound they make. This sound is described like a cow or a bull mooing. But instead of ribbit, a bullfrog’s call sounds like it is saying “jug-o-rum.” The call is so loud it can be heard from a half-mile away.

Here are some more interesting facts about the American bullfrog.

Fun Facts

  • American bullfrogs are the biggest frogs in the United States, but they still only weigh about 1 pound.

  • Bullfrogs have to live in water, so we most often see them in lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, marshes and swamps. They prefer shallow, still water.

  • A bullfrog is born from an egg. It hatches as a tadpole, which has gills and a long tail and lives completely underwater. It develops from a tadpole to a froglet, or young frog, over the course of one to three years. Once it is a froglet, it continues to develop into a fully mature bullfrog.

  • Female bullfrogs can lay up to 20,000 eggs at one time! The tadpoles emerge from the eggs about four days later.

  • Are you a picky eater? Bullfrogs aren’t. They will eat just about anything that moves. They mostly eat insects and crustaceans, but also snakes, worms, frogs and the eggs of animals that live in the water. They sometimes even eat other bullfrogs.

  • In the wild, bullfrogs usually live between seven and nine years.

  • A bullfrog can jump as far as 6 feet, which is about 10 times its body length.


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