Upland Chorus Frog

Pseudacris feriarum
Family: 
Hylidae (treefrogs and allies) in the order Anura (frogs)
Description: 

A small gray or tan frog with dark dorsal stripes that are narrow or broken into a series of dashes or spots. Some frogs may lack such markings. A gray, irregular stripe extends from the snout through the eye and down each side to the groin. A dark spot on the head between the eyes may be triangular. Breeding males have dark throats. Breeding call is similar to the boreal (formerly called western) chorus frog’s, a raspy, extended “prreeep” with an inflection at the end, but the upland chorus frog’s is longer and lower.

Size: 
Length: ¾ to 1½ inches.
Habitat and conservation: 
This frog is similar in many ways to its close relative, the boreal chorus frog. It lives in small patches of woods, swamps, and river bottomland forests. It takes shelter under leaf litter, under small logs or tree bark laying on the ground, or in small animal burrows during the day. They are seldom seen outside of breeding season.
Foods: 
This species hunts for a variety of small insects and spiders, especially during damp nights.
Distribution in Missouri: 
Mississippi Lowlands of southeastern Missouri.
Status: 
Common. Apparently it hybridizes with the boreal chorus frog where their ranges overlap.
Life cycle: 
These frogs become active in February and breed in late winter or early spring. They may be the first frogs to chorus in southeastern Missouri. Breeding occurs in temporary pools, low spots in crop fields, and in ditches. Males often sing in the water with their head and forelegs above the water, grasping a blade of grass or plant stem. Females lay 500–1,000 or more eggs, which hatch within a week. Transformation from tadpoles to froglets takes 6–8 weeks.
Human connections: 
These frogs help control populations of sometimes-troublesome insects; also, because they are sensitive to pollutants, they are an indicator species, whose health and population numbers help us to gauge the health of their ecosystem.
Ecosystem connections: 
These small frogs prey on numerous insects and spiders, helping to control their populations, but they also fall prey to many larger predators at each stage of their life cycle. There is even a documented instance of a fishing spider turning the tables by eating an upland chorus frog.
Shortened URL
http://mdc.mo.gov/node/3929