Fraser’s Clawed Frog, Xenopus fraseri

The Fraser’s clawed frog also known as Fraser’s platanna is wide spread with an abundant population throughout Angola, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and Rwanda.

The habitat of this species of frog is tropical and subtropical lowlands where there are forests, rivers, freshwater lakes, marshes, ponds and streams.

The Fraser’s clawed frog is a water dependent species using it for living and breeding. The tadpoles are filter feeding. This species is also adaptable to a variety of altering habitats.

The Fraser’s clawed frog has a flattened egg shaped body covered with a protective mucous resulting in a very slippery skin. It is a very strong swimmer with fully webbed toes, although the fingers lack webbing. Three toes on each foot contain black claws.  The eyes are located on top of the head and have circular pupils. The eyelids or tongue do not move, and this species does not have eardrums.

Unlike most species of frog, the tongue is not used for gathering food, rather this species uses the fingers to aid in feeding.

During breeding, the male will grasp the female around the waist by the fingers. During this time the male will develop nuptial black pads on the fingers to assist in the process.

It is listed as least concern on the IUCN list, because of its abundant population.

The Xenopus Genus of frogs are widely used in laboratories as well as the study of human disease gene function. Thus this species along with other species in the Xenopus Genus are called medical frogs.

Kingdom:     Animalia
Phylum:     Chordata
Class:     Amphibia
Order:     Anura
Family:     Pipidae

Image Caption: Xenopus fraseri. Credit: Václav Gvoždík/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 2.5)