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Bushveld Rain Frog

Breviceps adspersus


The have a very round body with a flattened face. They are various shades of brown with orange or yellow spots all over their body. Their back feet are like spades, which they use for digging. They can burrow themselves up to 20 inches below ground. They only look all inflated like this when they have enough water in their skin. When they are dry, they look like shriveled up raisins.


They are found in much of southern Africa and inhabit savannah and grassland areas. This gal was found under a rock in a grassland/thorn scrub area.


This is the frog that made me fall in love with frogs. The whole story about how I found her just changed my life, she will always have a special place in my heart :) Okay here's the story: Before I went to Africa (went with my teacher and a few other students), my teacher gave us species lists for the areas we will be in and asked us to look them all up and make a wish list for what we wanted to see the most. I just Googled pictures of the genus Breviceps (which I recommend you do now), and of course once I saw them I knew I wanted to see one. So I told me teacher and he said we had a decent chance at finding one. About half way through our trip, we spent one morning flipping rocks in lowland thorn scrub. I wasn't finding much, but at one point my teacher asked me to come over. When I get there, he tells me to hold out my hands. So I cup my hands, and he drops this shriveled, dried up, raisin looking frog into my hands. Very confused, I asked him what it was. He responds that it's a rain frog, and that just confused me even more since it looked nothing like what Google showed me. Needless to say I was quite disappointed! I asked him why it looked like a raisin, and he said it was just because she was dry. We put her in a bag with leaves and took her back to photograph at lunch time along with other things we had found that morning. While photographing something else, I picked up the bag with her in it and was still just so disappointed. So I asked my teacher if I put some water in the bag with her if she would inflate. He said he wasn't sure, but it might work. So I poured a little water in with her and set her aside for awhile. About 5 minutes later, I picked up the bag and noticed it was all fogged up so I couldn't see inside. I opened the bag, and dumped her and the leaves onto the table. What came out of the bag was just the most amazing thing I've ever seen. Everyone in my group just sat there in awe as a frog that looked like it had swallowed a bouncy ball walked all over the table. Not only did she look like a bouncy ball with legs, but she had a huge frown on her face and her front feet were turned in. She couldn't hop inflated like this, but she walked all over the table. We had set up leaves as a back drop on the table for photos, and she walked all over them and messed them all up. She wouldn't stop walking for anything, so all my pictures had table showing in them. She would have walked off the table many times if we hadn't caught her! My whole group just got a kick out of photographing her and were laughing the whole time, and I don't think anyone actually got good photos of her! I just fell in love with that little grumpy face and her attitude that went along with it. We took her back out that afternoon where we caught her at, and I released her and watched her walk off into the grass. I will never forget her, and she is the reason I love and am studying amphibians today :)

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KarenL 9 years ago


Telse 9 years ago

Thought of you too...when I saw these. Seeing as you're into amphibians.

Telse 9 years ago

Hi Ashley. here it is finally. scroll to the sixth row of images and it is the the 5th. image over. The frog with the top Hat and frown. This is what I instantly thought of when I saw the expression on your Frogs face. Ha!
Michigan J. Frog.
Sorry I couldn't just copy and paste the image. (that would be a good feature)
Also here is a link to the Vintage cartoon. Loved this cartoon when I was a Kid! Cheers.

AshleyT 9 years ago

Thanks Telse! Haha I didn't realize other people were in chat, but I'm glad you enjoyed my story :) And I would love to see what she reminds you of!

Telse 9 years ago

Ashley, what a good story.Your story in chat about this Frog was hilarious.
Love the face. Can see why you fell in love. The frown reminds me of an old cartoon I saw when I was kid. I'll find a link for you soon..

AshleyT 9 years ago

Thanks Brendan, Cody, and Argy! Pictures don't do this frog justice, so much more amazing in person!

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 9 years ago

Fabulous weird frog.

Cody.conway 9 years ago

He is such a grumpy looking frog!!! So glad you showed me this guy. And I was very happy to hear the story of how things frog changed your amphibius life :-)

BrendanSmith 9 years ago

very cool...i chuckled when i saw his profile!

AshleyT 9 years ago

I know! If you google image search them, the pictures put a smile on my face every time! They are just so fat and grumpy looking haha. Thanks ScottHarte!

Nice, I like it's cute Mouth also...looks just like this.... : {

ScottHarte 9 years ago

Really neat frog, great find

AshleyT 9 years ago

Frog, it is in the Microhylidae family. They look like dried up, shriveled raisins until they get in water, then they blow up like this :)

Cute thing!! is it a toad or a frog?

Spotted by

Maruleng Local Municipality, Limpopo, South Africa

Spotted on Jan 1, 2012
Submitted on Oct 30, 2012

Spotted for Mission

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