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Diagnosis: Typical body shape; large ranid frog; protruding eyes; dorsal ridges; large inner metatarsal tubercle.
Description: A large, very compact ranid. Males reach 83-120 mm (SVL), females 85-110 mm. Females reach just 50% of the male weight. The lower jaw of the broad mouth bears two characteristic long projections (tooth like structures) which point dorsally. Nuptial pads appear on the first finger of the male. The skin is faintly warty, and the warts are rather rounded. The lateral ridges are short, never stretching from the head to the end of the body. The habitus changes considerably as growth proceeds. Young frogs are sturdy and almost plump. Adult animals are dorsoventrally flattened, resembling a flat cake. The eyes move more and more towards the center of the frontal region, and in adults are very protruding. The tympanum is distinct, large and high-oval in shape. Webs are found exclusively on the hind feet. They either leave free the first phalange of the fourth toe (as on animals from Zimbabwe, see Lambiris 1989), or the webbing formula reads 1 (0), 2 i (0.5), 3 i (1.5), 4 i/e (2), 5 (0.5) (as on an animal of unknown origin shown in Fig. 43; see reference below). Finger and toe tips are not enlarged. The inner metatarsal tubercle is transformed into a large shovel whose length surpasses that of the shortest toe.
Coloration: The dorsum of adult animals is more or less uniform yellow green to drab olive green. Males tend to be more greenish, whereas females are often more olive brown. A pale vertebral stripe and light lines on the ridges and warts are more common in females. The young often bear a bright, light green vertebral stripe, gold-brown speckles and black markings on their dark green skin. Forming black bars, these markings also appear on the lips and extremities. Lower lip, finger-tips and venter are uniform white or cream. Males have dark yellow throats. On some individuals, the venter is completely yellow. A dark patch is often present in the center of the tympanum. The webs are darkly pigmented.
Voice: A loud "whoop" lasting about 0.11 to 0.29 sec, with the dominant frequency of this frequency modulated call being 0.45-0.60 kHz. Additionally, there are components of 0.3-0.4 and 0.6-0.9 kHz (Channing et al. 1994). Passmore & Carruthers (1995) describe the call as a short deep "yop" uttered at irregular intervals.
This account was taken from Rödel, M.-O. (2000), Herpetofauna of West Africa vol. I. Amphibians of the West African Savanna, with kind permission from Edition Chimaira publishers, Frankfurt am Main.
For references in the text, see here.