DISCUSSION: Do frogs grow on trees?

  • DISCUSSION: Do frogs grow on trees?

     Kate Forrer updated 8 years, 7 months ago 1 Member · 1 Post
  • Kate Forrer

    April 13, 2012 at 1:54 pm

    Recently this photos was submitted to the UVM Master Gardener helpline.  These fertilized frog eggs were found about 15 feet from a pond up a spruce tree. Needless to say it has generated quite a bit of interest. 

    Below is the response from Jim Andrews, a herptologist with the Vermont Reptile and Amphibian Atlas Project.  Here is Jim’s response:

    I agree that these eggs are amphibian eggs.  However, none of our amphibians would purposefully lay their eggs out of water.  They look like a small portion of a mass of fairly fresh Wood Frog eggs. So, that leaves the question of how they got up there.  I don’t know, but I will list some options that you can consider.        

    • A duck that was feeding on/in the eggs was scared, took off and dropped some of the eggs up in the tree.     
    • A moose walked through the pond, got the eggs on its feet and they ended up being flung into the tree.        
    • A predator (Barred owl, Raccoon) caught a female Wood Frog and carried it up the tree where it ate it.  When the eggs leaked out of the body of the frog, they got wet and expanded and stuck in the tree.  We see this sort of thing on roads when amphibians get hit.       
    • The tree or part of it was bent over and in the pond when it was partially frozen and the eggs were laid and has since straightened up carrying the eggs with it.       
    • One of your neighbor’s kids was playing around the pond and threw the egg mass up in the tree.   

    I guess for now we can rest assured that frogs do not grow on trees!

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