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Difference between toad and frog

Toads and frogs are both families of amphibians belonging to the order of the Anurans . We can all easily get a mental picture of these animals by mentioning them, but it is not always easy to distinguish between the two. When we talk about them, we all see those creatures with bulging eyes and strong hind legs, hopping around. However, is this conception correct? Are there important differences between frogs and toads?

If you want to know more about these two families of anurans, join us in this AgroCorrn article in which we talk about the difference between toad and frog , offering you a summary, their characteristics and photos.

You may also be interested in: What do toads eat

Difference between toad and frog

If you were wondering what the difference is between toad and frog , pay attention to this list with the main differences that can be seen with the naked eye between these types of amphibians:

  • Type of skin.
  • Body shape.
  • Shape of the limbs.
  • Way of laying the eggs.
  • How they move.
  • Habitat.

The skin of toads and frogs

While the skin of frogs is smooth and shiny, always moist in appearance, that of toads is thicker and coarser, covered with wart-like bumps. This is because toads are much more adapted to life away from water and their skin protects them. This, in addition, produces a peculiar bad smell and is in many cases poisonous to predators that bite it. However, there are also poisonous frogs.

Body and leg morphology

When we think of frogs, we imagine slender animals with agile bodies, with long and thin legs, especially developed in the case of the hind legs. With toads, on the other hand, the common thing is to be faced with species of much more robust and forceful bearing, more muscular and with shorter legs. The body of toads is shorter and more rounded, while that of frogs, in comparison, is elongated.

How Toads and Frogs Lay Eggs

Although both families lay their eggs in the water, the frogs do so by forming clouds covered with a substance that holds the eggs together. Toads, on the other hand, arrange their eggs in lines on the leaves of aquatic plants.


Frogs are the queens of jumping, since their lower weight and their hind legs, which are larger in comparison than those of toads, allow them to propel themselves very easily. Also, some tree frogs have suction cups on their legs that allow them to climb easily. Toads, on the other hand, prefer to run or even bury themselves with their hind legs, as they are less agile.


Both families are amphibian creatures, but while frogs barely wander from water sources because they are more dependent on moisture, toads can live for long periods of time on land, as their body has greater control over retaining water. water on their bodies.

However, all these differences, especially those that refer to morphology and appearance, are only a guide: some frogs look like toads and vice versa, so only an expert will be able to differentiate them with complete certainty.

We recommend you take a look at these other AgroCorrn articles on What animals are amphibians and where they are found and on How amphibians breathe .

Similarities between toad and frog

Of course, there are also several similarities between a toad and a frog :

  • They are both anuran amphibians.
  • They both lay eggs.
  • Its life cycle shares the metamorphosis from tadpole to adult.
  • They need moisture.
  • They breathe through the skin. In addition, when they are tadpoles they combine this respiration with the branchial respiration and as adults they combine it with the pulmonary one.

The first three points can be grouped under the fact that, as they are different families of the same order, they share a good part of their life cycle. The life cycle of a frog and the life cycle of a toad are almost identical : despite their differences in egg arrangement, they both hatch from the egg as so-called aquatic, gill-breathing tadpoles. Throughout this phase they grow and develop legs and lungs, while losing their tails, ready to move on to the terrestrial adult phase. Learn more about this in this other article on The Life Cycle of a Frog .

In addition, both need the humidity of the environment. Although frogs are much more dependent on water, toads also need it for the development of their young.

Both toads and frogs can breathe through the skin and, in addition, for adult lung respiration they are helped with throat movements. Here you can discover 16 animals that breathe through the skin .

Characteristics of toads

The main characteristics of toads or Bu fonidae are:

  • They are more detached from the aquatic environment.
  • Their skin is thick and rough, as with warts.
  • They inhabit muddy areas where they can excavate small galleries, and some of them have spurs on their hind legs to do so.
  • They have no teeth.
  • The parotoid glands are located behind the head, which produce the toxins that give them their smell and poisonous effect.

Characteristics of frogs

The main characteristics of frogs or Ranidae are:

  • Their fingers are webbed, with interdigital membranes (between the fingers), due to their greater adaptation to the aquatic environment.
  • Their legs are also strong and skillful.
  • They can jump and also climb rocks, plants and trees with agility.
  • Although it is not as common as in toads, some frogs are very poisonous, their venom being much more deadly than that of jesters.

Here we leave you an article about Why do frogs rain from the sky and also this curious video from our YouTube channel in which we talk about these frog showers. Have you ever seen one?

What is bigger a toad or a frog?

Toads are generally much larger, sturdier, and heavier species. There are, in fact, large toads that can feed on small rodents or snakes. Giant toads weighing almost 3 kilos have been recorded .

Therefore, generally, we can say that a toad is larger than a frog , but it depends on the specific species that we are comparing.

The frog

The tortoise , being the common tortoise scientifically known as Ceratophrys ornata , is an anuran of the ceratophid family that an inexperienced eye can easily mistake for a frog or toad . It is also commonly called the pacman frog, due to its resemblance to the classic video game mascot, or horned toad.

They are species of great aggressiveness, with fangs and carnivorous feeding. They are found in the tropical zone of South America and have sizes between 12 and 17 cm.

Maria Anderson

Hello, I am a blogger specialized in environmental, health and scientific dissemination issues in general. The best way to define myself as a blogger is by reading my texts, so I encourage you to do so. Above all, if you are interested in staying up to date and reflecting on these issues, both on a practical and informative level.

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