This article compares true frogs and true toads and makes generalizations for the most common characteristics of frogs and toads. There are several exceptions because there is a vast variety of frog and toad species, each with different characteristics.
Frogs and toads are amphibians belonging to the order Anura and taxonomy does not make a distinction between the two. True frogs belong to the family Ranidae and members of the family Bufonidae are called true toads.
Differences in Physical Characteristics
Frogs range in size from 10 mm to 300 mm. Their skin hangs loosely on their body and the skin texture also varies from one animal to another, although most frogs have moist and smooth skin. Many frogs, especially those that live in water, have webbed toes. Some frogs contain mild toxins that make them distasteful to potential predators.
Toads tends to have dry, bumpy, and possibly warty skin. Toads have a shorter body and their legs are often described as stubby or muscular. Frogs, on other hand, tend to have longer legs. The frog's eyes tend to be protuberant and bulge out of their bodies, which is not the case for toads.
Frogs and toads have similar diets. They are omnivorous feeding on insects, worms, small fish, algae, and other swamp creatures.
In general, frogs prefer a moist environment, while toads have adapted to both dry and moist environments.
Due to their longer legs, typical frogs are capable of very long jumps, many times their own body length, while the typical toad moves only in short hops.
There is no difference in lifespan for frogs and toads. The average frog or toad lives for 7 to 14 years while some live to be 40.