Frog and Toad Identification Keys

This identification key uses questions and answers to help identify the actual species of frog or toad encountered. The questions are simplistic, you should follow the result link to the description page for the frog or toad species and see if it fits. Also check the species description page for similar species, as there may be additional keys useful in distinguishing a particular species from similar species.

At this time, there either are no or few images or illustrations. Photographs for this identification guide that show identification key features will hopefully be complete by 2010, though I may need to use out of county photo for the tailed frog and spadefoot toad eye stripe comparison to meet that goal.

1. Eyes - The Starting Point

Are the pupils vertical or horizontal?

Vertical
Goto 2
Horizontal
Goto 3
   [Horizontal Pupils]
 

2. Dark Eye Stripe

Does the frog or toad have a distinct dark stripe through the eye?

Yes
Goto Coastal Tailed Frog
No
Goto Western Spadefoot
 

3. Toepads

Does the frog or toad have toepads?

Yes
Goto Central Pacific Chorus Frog
No
Goto 4
 [Toepads]  
 

4. Parotoid Gland

Does the frog or toad have warts and distinct parotoid glands?

Yes
Goto Western Toad
No
Goto True Frogs
 [Parotoid Glands]  [No Parotoid Glands]
 

Coastal Tailed Frog

You possibly have a Coastal Tailed Frog (Ascaphus truei).
For more information on this species: Coastal Tailed Frog.

 

Western Spadefoot

You possibly have a Western Spadefoot (Spea hammondii).
For more information on this species: Western Spadefoot.

[Western Spadefoot]
 

Central Pacific Chorus Frog

You possibly have a Central Pacific Chorus Frog (Pseudacris sierra).
For more information on this species: Central Pacific Chorus Frog.

[Central Pacific Chorus Frog]
 

Western Toad

You possibly have a Western Toad (Anaxyrus boreas).
For more information on this species: Western Toad.

[Western Toad]
 

True Frogs

You probably have a True Frog. To continue your identification, please see the True Frog Identification key specific to Shasta County True Frogs.

End Of Identification Key