Do Tree Frogs Have Teeth?
Tree frogs are among the most recognized amphibians in the world, with their large eyes, vibrant colours, and playful behaviour. Many people don’t realize that frogs, including tree frogs, don’t have teeth. So, what are their adaptations for eating, and how do tree frogs get by without chompers?
Adaptations for Eating
Tree frogs do not lack the need for teeth, yet many species, including the beloved tree frog, are unable to grow them. As a result, they have developed alternative methods to feed. Here are some of the adaptations they have:
- Skin Absorption: Frogs absorb certain nutrients directly through their skin
- Streamer Tongue: For larger prey, frogs use a specialized tongue called the “streamer tongue”, which is able to snap out, catch prey, and pull it back into their mouth
- Papillae: Small structures on a frog’s tongue help grip, tear, and swallow prey. These structures are known as papillae.
What Do Tree Frogs Eat?
A typical tree frog diet consists of small insects such as ants, mosquitoes, and spiders. Some of the larger species may include small snakes and lizards in their diet.
Tree frogs do not have teeth, but their specialized adaptations for eating make up for this absence. The small size and range of their meals suggest that not having teeth doesn’t seem to be an obstacle for them. Seeing as they are able to survive in the wild by consuming mostly insects, it’s safe to say that they don’t need teeth.