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IBERIAN FROG IN PNP GERÊS

2020/03/03

The Iberian frog is an adult tailless amphibian, characteristic of the Northwest of the Iberian Peninsula. It prefers mountainous areas, occurring mainly next to streams.
Unfortunately, the species is in significant decline, mainly due to the pollution of watercourses by industrial and domestic effluents, and the destruction of riverside habitats.
This is a species that can be found more easily in mountainous areas, close to streams with clean water (unpolluted, as it is very sensitive) and usually flowing with rocky substrate and abundant vegetation on the banks.
It has both daytime and nighttime activity and can be found throughout the year, although it is less conspicuous in the more “severe” months (both in winter and summer).
The Iberian frog is preyed upon by water snakes, trout and small carnivorous mammals. They have two defense mechanisms: the first choice is to always flee, diving, sinking into the bottom or letting yourself go with the current; when they feel irretrievably exposed they pretend to be dead and let themselves float completely immobile.
With a length of up to 5.5 cm, they feed essentially on spiders, insect larvae, snails, beetles etc. It has a slender body and a pointed snout. The hind legs are long and strong, perfectly adapted to big jumps. These members still have five fingers connected by interdigital membranes, making them also an excellent swimmer.
Normally females are larger than males, which are slimmer and have more robust forelimbs. Males during the breeding season acquire dark roughness on the inner fingers of the hind limbs.
The reproductive period extends from November to March, varying with altitude. Mating is more frequent at night. The female lays eggs from 100 to 450 eggs, in spherical and compact masses in the aquatic vegetation, between stones, or on the muddy bottom of ponds. Larval development lasts about three months.



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