The desert rain frog, also known as the desert rain frog, roamed throughout much of the world’s land mass long before man even existed. From time to time, it would make its home in a protected oasis, like a cave or underneath a rock. Today, it is considered an endangered species in areas it originally roamed. The desert rain frog can be found in Namibia, Southern Africa, and the United States.
This nocturnal creature can be found in various habitats throughout its range. For example, it normally resides in small lakes and wetland areas where there is plenty of access to water, food, and shelter. Its preferred habitat is typically a wetland or swamp area covered in moist sand. As with most nocturnal animals, its habitat often changes depending on the season and location. Sometimes it can be found in tree branches, under rocks, or burrowed in the ground.
When the desert rain frog makes its way from its native habitat to a new home in an unfamiliar area, it will often find its way into an underwater oasis. This provides the perfect habitat for the creatures that live within it, because they have sufficient cover to hide under. A few of the terrestrial habitats these frogs need include:
A large portion of the world’s population lives in southern Africa, Namibia, and Zimbabwe. A majority of the world’s desert rain frog populations currently occur in these three countries. Excessive habitat loss along with introduced predators has decimated many of these unique animals. The few remaining populations are threatened with extinction in the near future.
A number of threats exist for this nocturnal creature. They are being poached by some non-native populations. Hunting is also a problem in certain parts of their native habitat. In the wild, they eat small animals and insects, including birds and reptiles. Sand is used by these animals as a source of nourishment. In the dry months, the animals must seek a place to burrow into the sandy soil.
One interesting fact about this nocturnal creature is that it is also nocturnal in captivity. It generally sleeps only two to five hours a day. When threatened or stressed out, they will curl up into a protective ball and roll around restfully. They will often curl into a tight ball and rock themselves to sleep. When threatened or stressed out, these animals often shake their bodies and legs back and forth, trying to roll away from potential predators. Many times, if they get far enough away, they are able to live in relative comfort and hide in a hidden area of a desert rain frog’s territory.
It should be noted, though, that this species does not occur in dry habitats. They are actually scarce in southern United States. When they do occur, they are found in mountainous areas that are extremely dry. This is the reason why desert rain frogs have such varied diets. They eat various types of tree bark, leaf litter, seeds, and small insects as well as small mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds.
As you can see, this little frog has a very diverse diet. It is important to understand this habitat when studying this species. The coastal strip provides a special habitat that this species finds extremely comfortable and interesting. Understanding the habitat of the desert rain frog helps us better appreciate this exotic pet.
Most scientists classify this desert rain frog as a medium sized, long-bodied, upright-shaped, streamlined, vivacious, arboreal species. Its color pattern starts out with a dull green color on the dorsolateral band of its body, progressing to a bright red color on its abdomen. There are also dark colored spots and blotches on the front portion of its neck, and on its short limbs. It has a short and powerful bite, with its front pair of tibial scales tapering down towards the toes. Its head is large and round with a thick ragged banded veil, and its red tongue.
This species spends most of its early life in the coastal strip, spending the bulk of its life on the sand dunes of the Namibian desert. It has a highly developed sense of smell which allows it to locate food. It also has an active swim bladder, which it uses to propel itself over rough surfaces such as sand and water. The female’s range from around two to five inches in length, although the smaller species can be found up to eight inches in length. The habitat of the desert rain frog consists mainly of evergreen oases and scrub on the coastal strip.
The population of the desert rain frog is extremely fragile, and there are only about 400 specimens currently alive. They occur all across the country in areas including Lake Tanganyika and Okavango Delta in Botswana, the Kalahari Desert in Namibia, the Northern Cape regions, the Zanzibar archipelago, Tanzania, Kenya, South Africa, the Northeastern Serengeti Plains and parts of Zambia. The smallest populations can be found in the coastal regions of Namibia and Zimbabwe. In the recent past, they have become threatened by habitat encroachment from cattle ranching farms, logging activities and mining.