English name: Round-tongued Floating Frog (aka “Marten’s Floating Frog”, “Martens’ Oriental Frog”)
Scientific name: Occidozyga martensii (sometimes referred to as Phrynoglossus martensii)
Thai name: Kiat sai, Kiat lang poom
Description: To 3.3cm long. A short, thick frog with a broad head. Body is olive-grey to brown, sometimes with an reddish or orange line down the back. Small bumps are widely separated across the skin. Head is short and rounded. Tongue is round, though that is difficult to discern in the field. Underside is paler than rest of body.
Tadpoles are small and usually bury in the mud.
Call: High-pitched peeps or squeaks.
Similar Species: Green Puddle Frog has more conspicuous eyes that are set higher on the head, fewer rough bumps, and sometimes has a green dorsal stripe.
Habitat: Found in rain puddles, ponds, marshes, and damp areas near larger water bodies. Naturally occurs in forest and wetland, but is often found in rice paddies, empty lots, and other areas heavily modified by humans. Is not found in the level lowland plains where Green Puddle Frogs dominate.
Contribution to the ecosystem: Helps control insect populations. Provides food for birds, snakes, lizards, larger frogs, and fish.
Danger to humans: No danger to humans.
Conservation status and threats: The IUCN Red List lists the Round-tongued Floating Frog as “Least Concern” due to its large populations and its ability to tolerate a range of habitats, including heavily modified ones.
Interesting facts: Due to its small size, high-pitched calls, and propensity for calling from within water bodies, I heard this frog species several times before I visually located it. During one of my first sightings, I was attempting to catch the frog when I was approached by a Thai security guard who asked what I was doing. When I told him, he not only allowed me to proceed, but helped me catch the frog and then pose it for pictures!
The IUCN Red List: Round-tongued Floating Frog
Thailand Office of Environmental Planning and Policy: A Checklist of Amphibians and Reptiles in Thailand
A Field Guide to the Amphibians of Cambodia