This is a list of Texas amphibians, all frogs, toads, and salamanders native to the state of Texas.
A frog is any member of a diverse and largely carnivorous group of short-bodied, tailless amphibians composing the order Anura. The oldest fossil "proto-frog" appeared in the early Triassic of Madagascar, but molecular clock dating suggests their origins may extend further back to the Permian, 265 million years ago. Frogs are widely distributed, ranging from the tropics to subarctic regions, but the greatest concentration of species diversity is in tropical rainforests. There are over 7,000 recorded species, accounting for over 85% of extant amphibian species. They are also one of the five most diverse vertebrate orders. Warty frog species tend to be called toads, but the distinction between frogs and toads is informal, not from taxonomy or evolutionary history.
Toad is a common name for certain frogs, especially of the family Bufonidae, that are characterized by dry, leathery skin, short legs, and large bumps covering the parotoid glands.
Salamanders are a group of amphibians typically characterized by a lizard-like appearance, with slender bodies, blunt snouts, short limbs projecting at right angles to the body, and the presence of a tail in both larvae and adults. All present-day salamander families are grouped together under the order Urodela. Salamander diversity is most abundant in the Northern Hemisphere and most species are found in the Holarctic ecozone, with some species present in the Neotropical zone.
The state of Texas has a large variety of habitats, from swamps, pine forests in the east, rocky hills and limestone karst in the center, desert in the south and west, mountains in the far west, and grassland prairie in the north. This vast contrast in biomes makes Texas home to a wide variety of herpetofauna. Its central position in the United States means that species found primarily in either the western or eastern reaches of the country often have their ranges meeting in the state. Its proximity to Mexico is such that many species found there and into Central American also range as far north as Texas. Also, the karst topography of central Texas is home to several endemic species. The abundance of amphibians makes the state a prime area for research, and most species in the state are well documented.
A swamp is a wetland that is forested. Many swamps occur along large rivers where they are critically dependent upon natural water level fluctuations. Other swamps occur on the shores of large lakes. Some swamps have hammocks, or dry-land protrusions, covered by aquatic vegetation, or vegetation that tolerates periodic inundation or soil saturation. The two main types of swamp are "true" or swamp forests and "transitional" or shrub swamps. In the boreal regions of Canada, the word swamp is colloquially used for what is more correctly termed a bog, fen, or muskeg. The water of a swamp may be fresh water, brackish water or seawater. Some of the world's largest swamps are found along major rivers such as the Amazon, the Mississippi, and the Congo.
A forest is a large area dominated by trees. Hundreds of more precise definitions of forest are used throughout the world, incorporating factors such as tree density, tree height, land use, legal standing and ecological function. According to the widely used Food and Agriculture Organization definition, forests covered 4 billion hectares (9.9×109 acres) (15 million square miles) or approximately 30 percent of the world's land area in 2006.
Limestone is a carbonate sedimentary rock that is often composed of the skeletal fragments of marine organisms such as coral, foraminifera, and molluscs. Its major materials are the minerals calcite and aragonite, which are different crystal forms of calcium carbonate (CaCO3). A closely related rock is dolostone, which contains a high percentage of the mineral dolomite, CaMg(CO3)2. In fact, in old USGS publications, dolostone was referred to as magnesian limestone, a term now reserved for magnesium-deficient dolostones or magnesium-rich limestones.
Texas state law protects several amphibian species; threatened species denoted as (T) and endangered species denoted as (E).
Threatened species are any species which are vulnerable to endangerment in the near future. Species that are threatened are sometimes characterised by the population dynamics measure of critical depensation, a mathematical measure of biomass related to population growth rate. This quantitative metric is one method of evaluating the degree of endangerment.
An endangered species is a species which has been categorized as very likely to become extinct. Endangered (EN), as categorized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List, is the second most severe conservation status for wild populations in the IUCN's schema after Critically Endangered (CR).
Family Bufonidae (true toads)
Bufo is a large genus of about 150 species of true toads in the amphibian family Bufonidae.
Family Hylidae (treefrogs)
Hyla is a genus of frogs in the tree frog family Hylidae. They have a very broad distribution; species can be found in Europe, Asia, Africa, and across the Americas. There were more than 300 described species in this genus, but after a major revision of the family Hylidae most of these have been moved to new genera so the genus now only contains 33 species".
Family Leptodactylidae (tropical frogs)
Family Microhylidae (narrowmouth toads)
Family Pelobatidae (spadefoot toads)
Family Ranidae (true frogs)
Family Amphiumidae (amphiumas)
Family Salamandridae (newts)
Family Ambystomatidae (mole salamanders)
Family Plethodontidae (lungless salamanders)
Family Sirenidae (sirens)
Family Proteidae (waterdogs)
Scaphiopus is a genus of North American amphibian commonly referred to as the North American spadefoots, southern spadefoots, or eastern spadefoot toads. They differ greatly from true toads by having eyes with vertical pupils, no parotoid gland, and relatively smooth skin. Their most distinctive feature is a spade-like projection on their hind feet, from which their common name is derived. This projection enables spadefoot toads to dig in loose soils with ease. Its scientific names means ‘spade-foot’ as well, from the Ancient Greek skaphís and pous.
Spea is a genus of North American amphibian commonly referred to as the western spadefoot toads. They differ greatly from true toads by having eyes with vertical pupils, no parotoid glands, and relatively smooth skin. Their most distinctive feature is a spade-like projection on their hind feet, from which their common name is derived. This projection enables spadefoot toads to dig in loose soils with ease. Its name is from the Ancient Greek speos