There are two species of chorus frogs here in Canada: the Boreal Chorus Frog (Pseudacris maculata) and the Western Chorus Frog (Pseudacris triseriata). Prior to 1989, all Canadian chorus frogs were considered to be one species, as they are very similar – it’s even hard for scientists to differentiate them! Studies determined, though, that they are indeed different. While the Western Chorus Frog might have slightly shorter legs than the Boreal Chorus Frog, and that their respective calls have different structures, genetics have proven this.
|Boreal Chorus Frog (left), Western Chorus Frog (right)|
Chorus Frogs are about the size of large grape, about 2.5cm long on average, with a maximum of 4cm. They are pear-shaped, with a large body compared to their pointed snout. Their smooth (although a bit granular) skin varies in colour from green-grey to brownish. They are two of our smallest frogs, but best ways to tell them apart from other frogs is by the three dark stripes down their backs, which can be broken into blotches, by their white upper lip, and by the dark line that runs through each eye. Their belly is generally yellow-white to light green.
Males are slightly smaller than females, but the surest way to tell sexes apart is by the fact that only males call and can inflate their yellow vocal sacs. Adults tend to live only for one year, but some have lived as many as three years.
Their tadpoles (the life stage between the egg and the adult) are grey or brown. Their body is round with a clear tail.