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All About Frogs

Jim Arnosky

When my husband saw this book with the same title as my site at the library, he simply had to pick it up for me to review. It turns out, not only is it a great book, my three year old son was also really into it.

A couple of minor quibbles:

The book seems to have some generalizations that seem to miss a few facts here and there-
For example, the book refers to frogs and toads as "similar but different animals" - Perhaps it's a linguistics difference, but the term frog is used to cover the general class of species of amphibians in the Order Anura (see the animal kingdom tree here), so when folks talk about "frogs" it's generally accepted that they are talking about frogs and toads - all toads are frogs, but true toads refers to a specific family in the order Anura.

Another minor generalization "Only male frogs make sounds" is also not true for all species, though indeed, for a large majority of them and for the most common ones this tends to be the case.

That said, with over 36,000 species, for all intents and purposes this book pretty well covers all the basics, and these are merely nits.

Overall though, this was a really great and surprisingly detailed and comprehensive introduction to frogs, with some nice drawings. I even found myself learning some new things, after so many years of running this website!


David Badger

Hallelujah! I've found a great coffee table book about frogs! By this I mean one of those books that has lots of really beautiful photos of frogs as well as some info about them that goes beyond just how to feed them bugs (Like the great articles you run across in National Geographics once every few years.)
To my knowledge this is the best available book in print.
You can even buy sets of postcards of the photos found in this book..which I always had lining my drab gray cube walls at work.
Reptiles, Amphibians, and Invertebrates
An Identification and Care Guide
Patricia P. Bartlett, Richard D. Bartlett, Billy Griswold, R.D. Bartlett

One of the questions I get all the time is queries from people who want to identify some frog that they bought at a pet store. Often frogs are mislabeled, often pet shop owners are just as baffled by a shipment as the shoppers. This book is a pictorial identification guide and basic husbandry manual covering more than 250 species, subspecies, and color morphs of reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates, all of which are species most commonly found in pet stores.
Inside Their Remarkable World
Ellin Beltz

Herpetologist Ellin Beltz offers a compelling picture of the history of the frog, its anatomical makeup, its place in the natural world and the threats that are seriously reducing its numbers around the world.
This book is simply *brimming* with gorgeous full-color panels loaded with tons of beautiful photographs and a whole bunch of information to go along with it. Inside there's a comprehensive overview, everything you could want to know about frogs - be it natural history, anatomy and physiology, all the frog families and the various protective strategies that they take on in the wild. There's even a whole section dealing with frogs as they relate to humans, both as they appear in various myths and cultures around the world. Everything from Aztec beliefs to Kermit the frog, it's in there. Bonus: This book is so lovely, it's going right on the coffee table!
Hopping Mad

Michael Catchpool, David Roberts

Fred lived next door to Finn. Fred had 5 frogs, and so did Finn. But when the frogs hop over to each other's pads for nighttime parties and don't all return the next morning, Fred and Finn set out to build enormous barriers between their houses to keep their frogs from going next door. What follows is a little mathematical journey of counting fun as frogs clamor and climb their ways to night time frolicking.
My four year old son absolutely loves this book, and doesn't even realize that he's learning lots of math in the process!
Care and Breeding of Popular Tree Frogs
A Practical Manual for the Serious Hobbyist (General Care and Maintenance of Series)
Philippe de Vosjoli, Robert Mailloux, Drew Ready

I got this one at a Reptile and Amphibian looks like a good resource for anyone planning on owning any tree frogs. The descriptions of care are very clear, and it even deals with diseases and disorders that your frog may encounter.
Written by experienced and recognized frog herpetoculturists, this book covers the most necessary basics - everything from how to select a healthy animal, how to diagnose and treat an ill one, how to set up a frog's vivarium, what to feed, and how to breed the frogs.
It is written for a beginner frog keeper and focuses on species specifically recommended to beginners - green tree frogs, White's tree frogs, white-lipped tree frogs, and red-eyed tree frogs.
I don't have one of the popular tree-frogs at home, but this book has been highly recommended from others who do and it has a lot of pictures and information that looks like it's a great resource for the new tree-frog pet owner.
Eyewitness Books
A Dorling Kindersley Book

Great reference book! I hadn't realized that I should not be searching the nature and animal sections of bookstores, but rather the Children's sections, where I found a whole lot of great general frog info books! What a gold-mine! This book has a plethora of fun frog facts and neat pictures too!
Eyewitness Books
A Dorling Kindersley Book

Great reference book! I hadn't realized that I should not be searching the nature and animal sections of bookstores, but rather the Children's sections, where I found a whole lot of great general frog info books! What a gold-mine! This book has a plethora of fun frog facts and neat pictures too!
The Calls of Frogs and Toads

Lang Elliott

This book and CD combo gives an excellent introduction to the sounds of frog species living in eastern and central North America. Anyone interested in frogs who spends a lot of time outdoors listening for them would appreciate this one - you'll be able to not only tell which frog you're hearing but what they are saying too! It starts out with all the species calls, and then theres a whole section on the CD with narrated explanations and examples of various types of calls, like advertisement calls (HEY, Baby!), aggressive calls, release calls, rain calls, distress calls, warning calls, mixed species choruses and so on.
Back when I got a copy, the CD didn't come with a full book like it does now - which appears to have some added information and pictures... just to make it that much more interesting.

Note: If you are on the west coast like me, this book will be lacking a bunch of species that are common here. So this is best used as a reference guide for those in the middle and eastern parts of the country.

The World of Frogs, Toads, Salamanders and Newts
Robert Hofrichter

Yay! Another pretty picture book! This one is both an introductory textbook to the biology of the amphibians, and on the other, it is a coffee-table book of beautiful photographs of frogs.
Days with Frog and Toad

Arnold Lobel

These Frog and Toad stories are wonderfully written tales about the rewards of good friendship. Our son really loves this series, and we don't grow tired of rereading this one to him on a nightly basis.
Frog and Toad Are Friends

Arnold Lobel

This one is currently my 3 year old son's favorite book. I don't think we've gone by a single night in the past 6 weeks where a story hasn't been read from our copy. Frog and Toad are best friends and this series is about their time together. There are 4 cute little stories to be enjoyed in this book.
Breeding and Keeping Frogs and Toads
(Completely Illustrated with Color Photos Showing Breeding and Keeping)
W.P. Mara

This one is probably my favorite general pet care book. It's full of really great pictures and has glossy pages (presumably because your handling wet frogs?) and has some very clear basic descriptions of frog care.
Probably the most exhaustive section on Frog Illness that I've been able to find yet. This one ends up being the book I refer to most. It seems to be a pretty comprehensive resource for the basic pet-care needs.
A Boy, a Dog, and a Frog

Mercer Mayer

This is the first book in a series of wordless picture books following the tale of a boy and his dog who go out exploring and find a frog. It's a very sweet tale, with really cute and expressive drawings.
We loved reading this book with our 3 year old as much as he did, so it's not just for kids too.
One Frog Too Many

Mercer Mayer and Marianna Mayer

Oh my goodness what a cute book series this is!
This falls under the wordless picture book genre - a story about a boy, his dog, turtle and frog, and a case of envy when a new frog joins the little group. The illustrations are priceless, with expressions so clear even our young 3 year old has no troubles figuring out what emotions each character is expressing.
This one is just as delightful the 100th time as the first time, for the young and old alike.
Frog Heaven

Nature's Song

This is one of my favorites. It's just a steady recording of various frog calls: makes you feel like you're in a lush forest, (even if you live in the middle of the city, like me) It's great background noise and nice to fall asleep to!
This is still one of my all-time favorite nature-recording CDs, of any genre, and not just because of the froggies!
Poison Dart Frogs
(Success With An Amphibian Pet)
William Samples

For the hardcore herp fans, this book appears to be one of the best ones out there when it comes to reference books for poison dart frog owners. It includes step by step instructions for breeding, raising eggs, care of tadpoles, food, terrarium, and so on. The intended audience clearly includes breeders, not just the casual pet owner, so it may be too technical for beginners. (That said, I really don't recommend poison dart frogs for "beginners" anyway.)
Sounds of North American Frogs

Smithsonian Folkways

The folks out at Smithsonian Folkways have a CD released with some frog sounds on it. This is a delightful recording, digitally remastered and narrated by herpetologist Charles M. Bogert, which is great as a teaching tool for the many many different kinds of sounds that frogs make! Great way to learn how to frog hunting with your ears!

David Wiesner

Looking for a great children's book with frogs? Check this one out! It's by far my favorite and you don't have to be a kid to truly appreciate it!
Minimal text, beautiful drawings.
This book even won the Caldecott Medal and is practically guaranteed to charm even those who don't think they really like frogs. Its a story about a Tuesday evening when Frogs begin a magical journey of flight. The images here are absolutely priceless and hysterical!
Amphibian Medicine and Captive Husbandry

Kevin M. Wright, Brent R. Whitaker, Kevin N. Wright

If you're even considering this one, chances are there's really absolutely nothing that *I* can teach you, but I'm going to list this one in the recommended reading list anyway since this is, after all, a frog site!
This book comes with high recommendations from aspiring veterinarians, but any serious herpetologist or serious breeder of captive amphibians would find information in this book useful. It covers all sorts of detailed bits about care, feeding and breeding of amphibians, as well as diagnosis of all sorts of diseases that they can get as well as methods of treatment.
Amphibians of Washington and Oregon

William P. Leonard, Herbert A. Brown, Lawrence L.C. Jones, Kelly Rorc Allister, and Robert M. Storm (Seattle Audubon Society)

If you live in the Northwest, this is a pretty good field guide for local "frog watchers." It even has information on how to identify different kinds of tadpoles.
Frogs, Toads, and Treefrogs
Everything About Selection, Care, Nutrition, Breeding, and Behavior
R. D. Bartlett, Patricia P. Bartlett

A popular soft-cover book that's easy enough for kids to understand as well. Lots of pictures and a good basic introduction to pet care information.
Amphibians and Reptiles in 3-D

Mark Blum

What a fun book! This one comes with special glasses embedded in the front. Using these glasses, you can check out really cool photographs of frogs and other reptiles in 3-D!
The Frog Prince
(We Both Read)
Brothers Grimm, Sindy McKay, George Ulrich

Here is the classic tale of the Frog Prince, a princess makes a promise to a frog to be his friend, in exchange for his help in retrieving her golden ball, but it's also a perfect introduction for young readers.
This book has been designed for kids just starting to learn to read to share the book with a better reader, by using different levels of vocabulary. Everytime you turn a page, there's a section on the left page for the better reader to read aloud, and on the right there's a bit for the young learner to try out which uses simpler language.
It's also a nice adaptation of the classic tale. Our son is just starting to get interested in reading, and though this is a bit advanced for him, he loved the story here. We'll definitely be returning to it when he's getting closer to this reading level - probably 1st grade. Plus it's just lots of fun to read together at bedtime!
It's a Frog's Life!

Densey Clyne

Great photos and a really great intro to frogs for the beginner.
The Book of the Toad
A Natural and Magical History of Toad - Human Relations
Robert M. Degraaf

An awesome historical look at the perception of Toads throughout history! I learned all kinds of neat stuff about toad myths and medicine. There's even a section dealing with famous artworks, from ancient Chinese sculptures, to eerie paintings of Bosch!
The Wide-Mouthed Frog
A Pop-up Book
Keith Faulkner

Another favorite book around here. It's especially fun when you making all the funny voices when reading this one aloud!
Froggy Gets Dressed

Jonathan London

This was one of my sons absolute favorite books when he was 2-3 years old. I read it to him countless times and yet it's always a pleasure to read.
Froggy wakes up in the middle of winter and insists he wants to go out to play, but he keeps forgetting to finish getting dressed before flopping out into the snow (flop flop flop).
They have this one in board-book too!
Frog Pond
Recordings and Sounds of Frogs CD
Natures Music

Three recordings on this album: Frogs and Stream, Frogs in Summer, and Frogs and Rain. It's an hour or so of audio recordings of ambient frog pond sounds.
The Nature of Frogs
Amphibians with Attitude
Harry Parsons

Lots of great frog images, and there's a lot of "dinner conversation" style information about frogs in here too - things like the myths about frogs in history and so on. A nice addition to a frog enthusiast's book collection.
Poison Frogs of the Family Dendrobatidae
Jewels of the Rainfores
Jerry J. Walls

The pictures in this book are fabulous. This oversized book is rich with color glossy photographs of the most amazing amphibians on earth. As a pet care book, I understand the book is lacking in some technical detail that will have serious herp-breeders frustrated, but as a coffee table book full of glorious images this book really fits the bill. As a pet care manual, skip this one and save your money.
Frogs & Toads As A New Pet
A Complete Introduction
John Coborn

Good basic introduction for the beginner frog owner. This has most of what you need to know, including some good photos, a section on setting up housing, some basic health care...that sort of thing.
The Proper Care of Amphibians

John Coborn

Another slightly heftier book compared to his other title, it also has some info on salamanders and newts. Thick pocket book with lots-o-info and pictures.
Amazing Frogs and Toads
Eyewitness Juniors
A Dorling Kindersley Book

Basically full of the same info as the bigger Eyewitness book, but less photography and more drawings. Though it's a smaller book it's still a great resource!
Echoes of Nature
Frog Chorus
Echoes Of Nature (Laserlight Series)

A bunch of frog recordings taken from various places in the field. One complaint I have heard about this one is that it sounds like it's a bit uneven - so if you're looking for purely atmospheric it might not fit the bill, and yet there's not accompanying narration so it's not instructional either. However, it's definitely got some variety of frog calls here.
The Strange Story of the Frog Who Became a Prince

Elinor Landor Horwitz (Illustrations by John Heinly)

I loved this book when I was probably about 8 or so. The very idea is fabulous...a witch comes along and turns a frog into a prince, who wants nothing more than to go back to being a frog.
Keeping and Breeding Amphibians

Chris Mattison

Bigger sized more general info, this deals more with different species of frogs rather than health guides. The illness section is only about two pages, but it offers a lot in the way of good information on each species of frog. It also deals with both frogs and other amphibians such as salamanders and newts.
Frogs and Toads
A Sierra Club Book for children
Steve Parker

Great artwork and descriptions. Lots of weird frog fact info here for all ages.
A Froggy Christmas


This one falls under "really strange": a CD collection of Christmas songs, sung by REAL frogs!
There are some samples you can listen to at both the amazon weblink on the left, and at the record label's website, here:
A Froggy Christmas
The Frogs of Summer


Another one of these frog sung music collections, this one is a summer song theme.
There are some samples you can listen to at both the amazon weblink on the left, and at the record label's website, here:
The Frogs of Summer
Frogs & Toads
A Complete Introduction
Jay Pyrom

Thin, but for the beginner its a pretty good resource for basic pet care. Has a lot of photos too and I've seen it in several bookstores..
Breeding Food Animals Live Food for Vivarium Animals
63 Black-and White photographs and drawings
Ursula Friederich, Werner Volland

This book talks about the basics of breeding animals to feed the growing number of fish, reptiles, amphibians, predatory insects, and birds being kept as pets. This actually isn't specifically about frogs, but since many frogs eat more than just bugs, and in fact eat things like mice and so on, this book seemed relevant and worthwhile to list. If you want to look into breeding your own feeder animals to fix breakfast for your favorite croaker, this book is an excellent resource.

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