Cretan Frog, Pelophylax cretensis

Cretan Frog (Pelophylax cretensis) is a species of frog belonging to the Ranidae family. It is native to Greece. Its natural habitat includes Mediterranean-type shrubby vegetation, rivers, intermittent rivers, swamps, freshwater lakes, intermittent freshwater lakes, freshwater marshes, intermittent freshwater marshes, and plantations. It is threatened by loss of habitat.

This frog has long and muscular legs, moist and smooth skin, webbed hind toes and a streamlined body. As with other members of the family, it also has a pointed snout. It is considered a medium sized frog when compared with other western Palearctic water frog species.

This frog is generally light grey to brown and mottled with brown or olive-grey colored spots on its back, while the throat and underside of the body are a whitish-grey. Sometimes, the upperparts of the Cretan frog might be a grass-green color with distinct brown spots. The insides of the hind legs are yellow, and the sides of the body might also have a yellowish coloration. This species has a prominent dark brown fold of skin down the back.

The calls of this frog are produced in a long series, and are made up of many short bursts and intervals. The male individual has two dark grey vocal sacs, which form the characteristic croaking calls.

It measures up to 6.3 centimeters.

During the breeding season, the territorial male Cretan frog develops rough and swollen pads on its “thumbs” in order to grip the female while mating. It is seldom found far away from the water. It lays its eggs within the water bodies it inhabits, which is where the eggs will then develop.

Like other Ranidae species, the Cretan frog has a streamlined body which is adapted for swimming and jumping, which are its primary forms of movement.

Image Caption: Greek Marsh Frog or Cretan Frog (Pelophylax cretensis. Credit: Benny Trapp/Wikipedia (CC BY 3.0)