Animal of the Week: The Tomato Frog
By Sara Umbrell, Layout Editor
Say hello to this week’s Animal of the Week — the tomato frog! Otherwise known as Dyschophus guineti. Yes, you read correctly, there is indeed a frog named after the beloved fruit (yes, it is a fruit), the tomato. These little guys are found exclusively in the rainforests of Madagascar that run along the east coast of the island. They are identified by their strikingly bright color, males usually being yellow-orange while females are a brighter red-orange. Their bellies are usually an offwhite color, and some individuals can have black spots on their back. They grow no bigger than four inches, with females usually being slightly larger than males.
Unlike most frogs, the tomato frog does not have webbing in its front feet, and very little in its hind feet. This is because the tomato frog does not swim much, and prefers very slow-moving, almost stagnant water to sit in during the day. Once evening hits, and eventually turns to night, the tomato frog becomes more active and wanders around the forest floor. Their diet consists of insects, larvae and worms. The tomato frog breeds in freshwater pools, the female laying hundreds of eggs on the surface, which hatch about 36 hours later. Fortunately, the tomato frog is of least concern on the endangered species list and these little fellows are thriving!