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Chinese Edible Frog

29 Mar

Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frog found near temple lake in Sukhothai Province

Taiwanese Frog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frog found on edge of decorative pond in Suan Luang

Chinese Edible Frog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Pale Chinese Edible Frog found in lake in Payao Province (photo courtesy of Philip Gregory)

Rugulose Bullfrog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frog in Cambodia (photo courtesy of Koulang Chey)

Chinese Bullfrog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frog on edge of artificial pond in Chonburi Province

Taiwanese Frog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frog with injured eye from fishpond in Chiang Mai Province

Chinese Bullfrog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frogs in park pond in Klong Toei

Chinese Edible Frog American Bullfrog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus Lithobates catesbeianus

Hybrid Chinese Edible Frog/American Bullfrog found in pond in Chiang Mai Province

Chinese Edible Frog Hoplobatrachus rugulosus

Chinese Edible Frogs for sale in Oh Nut market

Taiwanese Frog Rana rugulosus

Frog in market showing skin damage due to captivity.

English name: Chinese Edible Frog (aka “Chinese Bullfrog”, “Taiwanese Frog”)
Scientific name: Hoplobatrachus rugulosus (formerly known as Rana rugulosa)
Thai name: Kob Na, Kob nu

Description: To 16cm long. The largest frog in the Bangkok area, rivaled only by the Common Indian Toad. Heavy-bodied with distinct ridges in the dorsal skin. Body is olive-brown or gray. Legs are powerful, and feet are fully webbed. Underside is cream, sometimes with dark spotting.

Tadpoles are large, easily growing over 5cm. They are brown in color.

Call: A loud call that has been described as “auk auk”.

Similar Species: Few Bangkok frogs have the characteristic ridges of the Chinese Edible Frog.
Asian Grass Frog also has long raised bumps, but is smaller, more slender, and often has a dorsal stripe.
Common Indian Toad has shorter legs, a blunter and broader head, and has the characteristic “warts” of a toad rather than raised ridges.

Habitat: Found in still water bodies such as lakes, manmade ponds, ditches, rice paddies, and marshes. In Thailand I have found them in decorative fishponds, park ponds, and temple lakes. Almost always seen in or on the edge of water.

Contribution to the ecosystem: Helps control the populations of insects, smaller frogs, and small rodents. The tadpoles feed on smaller tadpoles of other species. Provides food for large birds, snakes, and monitors.

Danger to humans: No danger to humans.

Conservation status and threats: The Chinese Edible Frog is a Class II protected species in China and Taiwan, The IUCN Red List lists it as “Least Concern” due to their wide distribution and tolerance of a range of habitats. Though they are often collected for food, their populations appear to be able to handle the current level of exploitation. Personally, in Thailand I have only found them in manmade water bodies. The Chinese Edible Frog has been introduced to Malaysia and the Philippines.

Interesting facts: As their name should suggest, Chinese Edible Frogs are the most commonly eaten frog in Thailand. Containers of the frog for sale can be found in most outdoor Bangkok markets, and their presence in city ponds and temple lakes is likely due to the release of market-bought frogs.

References:
The IUCN Red List: Hoplobatrachus rugulosus
Observations on Geographical Variation in the Asian frog, Hoplobatrachus rugulosus
Thailand Office of Environmental Planning and Policy: A Checklist of Amphibians and Reptiles in Thailand
Hong Kong Amphibians and Reptiles (2nd Edition)
A Field Guide to the Amphibians of Cambodia
Travellers’ Wildlife Guides: Thailand

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2 Comments

Posted by on March 29, 2012 in Frogs, True Frogs

 

Tags: , , ,

2 responses to “Chinese Edible Frog

  1. Steph

    June 24, 2012 at 11:05 am

    Would you have any information about what the diet of Hoplobatrachus rugulosus is?
    Thanks.

     
    • Asian Herp Blogs

      June 27, 2012 at 7:39 pm

      Hong Kong Amphibians and Reptiles reports that they eat mostly large insects, but also feed on smaller frogs and small rodents. A Field Guide to the Amphibians of Cambodia . The IUCN report says that they are effective predators on other frogs.

       

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