How the toad differs from the frog: the main differences and characteristics


How is a frog different from a toad?

And the toad and the frog are well-known animals. Those who have not seen them in life are familiar with them from fairy tales - "The Frog Princess", "The Frog Traveler", "Thumbelina" (do you remember Zhabenok and his mother?) And many others.

People treat these animals differently - someone can not tolerate them, because neither the toad nor the frog is beautiful. And someone keeps them at home in the terrarium as pets. These two representatives of amphibians (that is, creatures living on earth and in water) are very similar. So much so that they are often confused. But despite their similarity, they are still different. What is the difference between a toad and a frog?

The first distinction is frogs and toads in their appearance. The toad has short hind legs, it is squat. The toad is larger than a frog, with a flatter and heavier body, with its head close to the ground. A frog has a bigger head, although its size itself is much smaller than toads. And the head of the frog is always in a raised form.

The skin of these animals is completely different - the skin of the toad is dry and covered with warts, and the frog's skin is smooth and slippery. By color, it is also possible to distinguish where the toad is, and where the frog is, since the toads on the tummy have fair skin and the frog has a color similar to algae. In addition, the toad is not jumping, like a frog.

Another big difference between a toad and a frog is their habitat. Although both of these amphibians love water, the frog lives in the water all the same. And the toad lives on land, in a damp and wet place, it returns to the water (where, by the way, it is born) only to lay eggs for breeding.

Scientists say that the frog never leaves its birthplace. She will continue to live “until old age” in the reservoir where she was born. Therefore, in nature, most often a frog can be found on the banks of rivers and lakes, and not in the garden, like a toad.

And yet, toads do not have teeth, and some types of frogs have teeth, though not all, and they are located only in the upper jaw. It is for this reason that both the toad and the frog swallow food whole.

Well, now you know how and how these amphibians differ from each other.


The main way to reproduce offspring in the animals in question is to lay eggs. This suggests a similarity, and how does a frog differ from a toad, if we talk about procreation? First, we study the type of clutch frog. It is a bubble mass resembling jelly. Toads spawn by type of cord, one edge of which is wound on algae.

You can sometimes think that just a sprig of a water plant is swaying with the flow. This is a kind of protection of future offspring from fish. What is the difference between the green toad and the pond frog? Some species of amphibians lay a belt of eggs by wrapping it around the male. He sits in the burrow, waiting for the appearance of tadpoles. Then the spouse moves closer to the reservoir. In Latin America there is a species of toads that carry clutch in special cavities with fluid. These secret "tanks" are placed on the back.

To summarize: what is different and how similar are the frog and the toad

The frog, in contrast to the toad, has parotid glands in the back of the skull, in which a toxic substance of the parotonid type accumulates, making the animal uninteresting for predators.

As for the similarity, there are also a lot of such features. Both species belong to the class of amphibians amphibians, can survive in the water and on land, spawn, from which the young later emerge. To answer the question: "What is the difference between toad and frog tadpoles?", You need to be a specialist. Outwardly, they are almost identical. Only after the tail disappears from the tadpoles the paws grow, and they rush to the places with thickets. A further period of development of fry amphibians is identical.

What is the difference between a frog and a toad? The differences include coloring. In the first amphibian species, the skin is greyish green, brown, or olive. Everything depends on the region of habitat, including climate features.

Myths and interesting facts

Long since there are many myths and incredible stories about frogs and toads. Many assume that the second type of animals is much larger than frogs. This is not entirely true. There are several types of simply huge frogs, given their standard dimensions. For example, goliath is a species that is found in West Africa. The mass of such a "wrap" can reach three kilograms with a length of up to 90 centimeters!

There is another common misconception about the difference between a frog and a toad. The similarity of these animals is that both the first and second can produce poison. For example, Kokoi frogs can kill a person with one touch, like a toad aha. Amphibians, most often found in domestic spaces, produce bufotein. It does not pose a threat to the human body, but it causes an abundant salivation and aversion in animals that have poked at the toad.

There is one very interesting legend concerning toads. Its essence lies in the fact that for thousands of years stones were allegedly formed, in which amphibious individuals, which were naturally hardy, lived. This material interested scientists, and in 1825, a researcher from Oxford conducted a series of experiments in this direction.

He, in petrified limestone and sandstone materials, drilled holes in which he placed the toads, lowering the structure to a meter deep underground. Poor animals spent in this state for a year. Some of them survived, and one individual even gained weight. This is due to the fact that the cork clogged the exit, lost. Insects got to the inner part of the cocoon, which the toad ate on.

Nevertheless, many experts question the history of the real long stay of frogs and toads in the inner parts of stones and trees. According to the legends, amphibians were repeatedly found in the vicinity of Wiesbaden at a depth of 2-3 meters underground. At the same time, they were in no way associated with the outside world. Scientists suspect that the animals themselves were buried at such a depth or accidentally crawled into cracks, after which they could live for a long time. And yet, judging by the reviews of researchers, this is the exception rather than the rule.

Comparison of physical development

The size of the frogs, depending on their species, can vary between 1-30 cm. The skin of an amphibian hangs freely on the body. The peculiarity of the skin texture, in most cases, is surface moisture and smoothness..

Almost all aquatic frogs have webbed fingers. A characteristic distinguishing feature of the skin of some frogs is the release of relatively light toxins, due to which such specimens are completely inedible for the majority of potential predators.

It is interesting! The difference between the life expectancy of a frog and a toad is practically absent and, as a rule, is 7-14 years, but some species of these amphibians are able to live in natural conditions for more than forty years.

Toads, unlike frogs, on the contrary, most often have a rough, warty skin with a dry surface. As a rule, the toad has a short body and legs. In most cases, the frog's eyes are clearly visible against the background of the body, which is completely uncharacteristic of any species of toad. In the large parotid glands, located behind the eyes, a specific toxic secret is produced, which does not pose any danger to humans.

Among other things, the most pronounced differences of the frog and toad include:

  • long and powerful legs, designed for frog jumping, are very different from the short legs of the toad, which often move in steps,
  • the frog has teeth in its upper jaw, and the toads are completely toothless,
  • the body of the toad is larger than the frog, it is more squat, and there is also a slight omission of the head.

Toads, as a rule, hunt after sunset, therefore they are predominantly nocturnal, and the main period of activity of frogs falls exclusively on daytime hours.

Comparison of habitat and nutrition

Much of the main species of frogs prefer to settle in a humid environment and water. At the same time, almost all toads are adapted to habitat, both in the aquatic environment and on land. Most often, frogs are found on the coastal line of natural water bodies and swamps, which is caused by spending much of the time directly in the water. This amphibian is devoted to the locality where it was born and precisely there it prefers to settle on its entire life. Toads belong to the regulars of gardens and gardens. After being born in water, this amphibian moves to land and returns to water only for egg-laying.

For feeding all amphibians use a large number of insects.. The diet of the frog and toad can be represented by slugs, caterpillars, larvae of various insects, earwigs, click beetles, ants, filly, mosquitoes and other pests that inhabit the gardens, gardens and coastal zones.

Comparison of breeding methods

For procreation, toads and frogs use ponds. It is in the water that these amphibians carry out egg-laying. The toad lays its eggs, combined in long cords, which are located on the bottom of the reservoir or braid the stem part of aquatic plants. Tadpoles born into the world also try to keep themselves in groups near the bottom. During the year, about ten thousand eggs are laid by one toad.

It is interesting! For some species of toad, male participation in the process of hatching eggs is characteristic. A male can sit in earthen pits, wrapping the eggs around his paw, immediately before the onset of the hatching stage, after which he transfers the eggs to the reservoir.

Frog caviar in appearance resembles small mucous lumps that float on the surface of the reservoir. Appearing tadpoles also live in water, and only after they mature, the young frog will be able to land on land. Frogs lay, as a rule, a significant number of eggs. For example, a bull frog can set aside about twenty thousand eggs for one season.

Wintering frogs and toads

Different types of frogs and toads overwinter in very different natural conditions, due to biological features:

  • the gray toad and the green toad use loose soil for this purpose, and arrange for wintering in earthen cracks or rodent holes,
  • moor frog and garlic hibernate on dry land using fossa-pitted pits, as well as heaps of coniferous or leaf litter,
  • grass frog prefers to winter at the bottom of a reservoir or in thickets of aquatic vegetation near the coastal zone.

Unfortunately, in a very severe and snowless winter, a significant part of amphibians most often die.

Frogs and toads

The useful activity of most amphibians is well known and is noted by many authors of scientific literature. Using to feed harmful insects and plant parasites, toads and frogs bring tangible benefits to gardens and gardens, fields and meadows, and forest areas. In order to preserve the population size of amphibians in the household plot, it is necessary to minimize the use of chemicals and, if possible, to equip a small artificial reservoir with aquatic vegetation.


The toad has short hind legs, it looks squat, its body is flat, larger than that of a frog, its head is lowered. The latter has a larger head and is constantly in an elevated position, and the body is much smaller.

On the background of the head, almost all species of frogs have clearly defined eyes, but for toads this is not typical. On the head of the latter, behind the eyes, in the parotid region there are large glands (parotids), producing a secret containing poison. For human health, this secret is not dangerous.

  • Frogs are jumping creatures, they jump up and in length, pushing off from the surface with long, powerful legs. The toads have short legs, which is why they do not know how to jump, but awkwardly roll over, moving on all four paws.
  • The frogs are graceful - the silhouette is elongated, they make deft movements. Visually, they evoke more sympathy, while many are not only afraid of touching the toad, but do not even want to consider it - it is so warty. She has a dry, uneven skin and a frog is slippery to the touch.
  • These animals differ in color - the color of the abdomen in a toad is light, and in a frog - the same greenish-brown shade as marsh vegetation.
  • There are types of frogs with teeth - they are located on the upper jaw. Toads have no teeth. Therefore, both amphibians swallow food - they are not able to chew.
  • Domestic frogs, funny and playful, with an unusual and bright color are ideal pets and do not require serious care.

During the day, these amphibians are active in different ways. Toad goes in search of food in the dark and is nocturnal. And frogs are active only during the day.

Habitat differences

The frog and the toad choose different habitats. The first one spends most of its life in reservoirs, the second - on land, but in dampness - in grass, foliage, loose soil.

Usually, frogs live on the shore near the swamps or water-measuring devices in which their metamorphosis from tadpoles to adult individuals took place. And the toads, coming out of the reservoir on land, suffer from living in kitchen gardens, gardens, and bushland. They return to the water only during the mating season - put off caviar.

Breeding difference

Both amphibians breed in reservoirs - there they make egg-laying. But in the process of laying eggs, the main difference of these animals from each other consists.

During the mating season, the number of eggs laid by the toad is significantly less than that of the frog, since its reproductive capacity is weaker. Caviar looks different.

Eggs of toads are connected by cords, in some species their length reaches 8 meters. Cords lie at the bottom of the reservoir, twine shoots of aquatic vegetation. For the year, this amphibian lays about 10 thousand eggs. Hatched tadpoles keep closer to the bottom in flocks. After metamorphosis out of the water.

Caviar, laid frogs, moves freely over the surface of the water in small mucous clots. The number of eggs there is an order of magnitude greater than that of the toad. For example, in one seasonal laying of a bull frog - about 20 thousand eggs. Tadpoles, having come into the world, also continue to live in the aquatic environment, and only after the metamorphosis the frogs are selected for land.

There are species of toads, in which males are responsible for the viability and development of the delayed female calf. Thus, the males of one of the species, which is found on European territory, wrap cords with caviar around their paws and guard it in the holes dug in damp soil, and not at the bottom of the reservoir, until it comes time for the larvae to hatch. As soon as the time comes for them to hatch, the males transfer their eggs to the aquatic environment.

What benefits do toads and frogs bring to people?

On land, all amphibians eat parasites living on vegetation, harmful insects. Therefore, they are useful where gardens are planted, and plant gardens. They also benefit forests, destroying flying and crawling forest pests. Basically, toads are doing it.

Those who grow agricultural products and are interested in large yields (small farmers, agricultural enterprises) are encouraged to maintain and maintain the natural number of toads for this area, minimizing the use of chemical fertilizers and pest control. And on the territory of a private suburban area you can make a small artificial pond with water plants.

Myths about frogs and toads

It is not true that the size of the toad is always larger. In the west of Africa (in Equatorial Guinea and Cameroon) the goliath frog is found. The mass of an adult individual reaches a little more than 3 kg, the length of the body is about 32 cm. In the jump (taking into account the length of the extremities) the total body length of the goliath is almost 90 cm.

It is not true that toads are poisonous animals, and frogs can do no harm to human health. It all depends on the species: a person risks dying only by touching the toad called Aga (range - Central and South America) or the Kokoi frog (its correct name is Horrible listolaz, found in the tropics in south-west Colombia).

Toads that live in Europe and Asia are absolutely harmless to humans. The poisonous secret secreted by them contains bufotenin, but this substance has an effect only on their natural enemies in nature: an animal that has tried to clench its teeth with a toad, begins to have abundant salivation.

The frog and the toad have a sufficient number of similarities and differences between them. But do not forget that the populations of frogs and toads within the natural population are part of the planet's ecosystem. So any of the species is important and necessary to maintain balance on the planet.


Exists several expressive external signswhich makes it easy to distinguish frogs from toads:

  • The first thing that attracts attention is skin. In frogs, it is smooth, slippery, wet. Постоянное увлажнение поддерживает исключительную способность лягушек дышать кожей. У жаб кожа сухая, ороговевшая, покрытая бугорками, выделяющими при раздражении едкую ядовитую слизь. Способность дышать кожей у жаб отсутствует. Процесс дыхания взрослой особи обеспечивается легкими.
  • The skin color of frogs - green shades, which is determined by the habitat, because they spend most of their time in the water, among the greenery of marsh plants. Ground toads are distinguished by their brown color, which allows them to be invisible, to merge with the ground, sitting in the afternoon in some raw hole. For toads, disguise is especially important, as it does not live near water, where it could dive in case of danger, and it is incapable of jumping like a frog.
  • Noticeable difference in the structure of the body. The proportions of the frog are more elongated, with the head stretched forward upwards. Due to the long and strong hind legs, it looks elastic, springy, and is really able to move quickly with big jumps. The toad, on the contrary, seems loose, squat and awkward. Her overweight body is pressed to the ground, her head is flat, her paws are short and weak. That is why the toad moves almost crawling, only occasionally making heavy jumps.
  • If you carefully examine the eyes of a toad, you can see that her pupil, unlike a frog, is elongated, which is associated with a nocturnal lifestyle.
  • One of the most true signs that distinguish a frog from a toad is teeth. Almost all species of frogs have small teeth, while toads never have them.


Frogs spend most of their life in the water, they hunt during the daytime, preferring to catch flying insects or small waterfowl. After the evening music roll call, they fall asleep until the morning. Toads, on the contrary, are hiding in the ground during the day, and go hunting at night, with great pleasure eating slugs, beetles, larvae and caterpillars, which, by the way, provide substantial assistance to people in the fight against pests of gardens and gardens.