Frog by rocks

Frogs and toads are an important part of local biodiversity – the amazing variety of life around us! Conserving biodiversity is essential to the health of the planet and the welfare of humankind. Frogs and toads have a special role to play in keeping the environment healthy. With their semi-permeable skin and their ability to live “on the edge” between water and land, frogs and toads are very sensitive to pollution and other environmental changes. By participating in this program you will help increase our scientific knowledge of frogs and toads in Canada.

Worldwide, many wetland species are declining in numbers or have recently become extinct. Monitoring frog and toad populations is one way to check the health of wetland areas.

Frogs and toads can be used as indicator species, because they are vulnerable to changes in the atmosphere, the land, or the water.

Tracking changes in the population of frogs and toads in Canada, their geographic range, and the beginning and ending of their calling season can help us understand what is happening in their environment. The most effective way to track changes in frog and toad populations is to listen for their calls during mating season in the springtime.

Male frogs and toads call to protect their territory and attract females. Each species of frog and toad has a very distinctive mating call.

Photo: Donald Munro | Western Chorus Frog

FrogWatch will help you learn to identify the calls of frogs and toads in order to:

  • Collect data on the distribution of amphibian species in your province
  • Have fun learning about your local environment, its importance and health
  • Share your results with similar programmes across Canada and around the world
  • Contribute to data on global climate changes

Why should I participate?

Over time, trends in FrogWatch observations may detect measurable climatic change in Canada. FrogWatch data also contribute to scientific databases on frog distributions.

Your FrogWatch Observations help scientists:

  • Track climate change using phenology (the study of times of recurring natural phenomena) data
  • Identify positive and negative population trends
  • Learn about the range and distribution of frogs and toads (especially in the northern extent of known ranges)

It’s a fun, easy family or community activity that can lead to protection of wetland habitat & species. You will learn more about lifestyles of these wet and wonderful creatures!

Photo: Donald Munro | Wood Frog Mating