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Turtle frog
Myobatrachus gouldii.jpg
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Amphibia
Order: Anura
Family: Myobatrachidae
Genus: Myobatrachus
Schlegel in J. E. Gray, 1841 or 1850
M. gouldii
Binomial name
Myobatrachus gouldii
(Gray, 1841)
Myobatrachus gouldii distibution.PNG
Range of turtle frog

Myobatrachus is a genus of frogs found in Western Australia. It is monotypic, being represented by the single species, Myobatrachus gouldii, also known as the turtle frog. It has a small head, short limbs, and a round body, up to 45 millimetres (1.8 in) long.[2]


Myobatrachus gouldii (front).png

The turtle frog is found in between Geraldton and Fitzgerald River in the Perth region, Western Australia.[3] This area is mainly semi-arid, so the frogs have adapted to suit this region. They have developed short muscular limbs to help them dig into the sand but, unlike most frogs, they dig forward, like a turtle. They feed on termites so the adaptation of the muscular limbs is useful when trying to penetrate a termite mound. They do not need to live near standing pools of water, as they undergo the entire metamorphosis stage within their eggs. Their closest relatives, among the few who share most of the turtle frogs traits, are sandhill frogs and forest toadlets.


Mating generally occurs recently after it has rained, but their call has been heard during July as well, suggesting variating mating seasons. When a pair of turtle frogs select each other as mates, they retire to the base of their burrow. Burrows may be as much as 1.3 metres deep. Breeding takes place within the burrow several months later. When the females lay eggs, they lay up to 50, and each can measure 7.5 mm in diameter.


  1. ^ Jean-Marc Hero, Dale Roberts (2004). "Myobatrachus gouldii". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. 2004: e.T41171A10397542. doi:10.2305/IUCN.UK.2004.RLTS.T41171A10397542.en. Retrieved 11 November 2021.
  2. ^ "Australian Frog Database: Myobatrachus gouldii". Frogs Australia Network. 23 February 2005.
  3. ^ "FrogWatch :: Turtle Frog". Western Australia Museum. Retrieved 25 July 2017.

External links[edit]