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American bullfrog

American bullfrog     Lithobates catesbeianus

Photo credit: GBNNSS


Appearance: Twice the length of the native common frog (up to 25 cm).

  • Call: Loud deep calls similar to a bellow.
  • Biology: Spawn can consist of up to 20,000 eggs, tadpoles can grow to 15 cm.
  • Diet: Outcompetes and eats native amphibians.
  • Impact: Carries diseases harmful to other amphibians, causing decline and extinction of some species.
  • Pathway: May have escaped or been deliberately released into the wild.
  • Legal status: Species of special concern listed under the retained EU Regulation 1143/2014 and the Invasive Alien Species (Enforcement & Permitting) Order 2019.
  • Unless you have a licence or permit or an exemption applies you must not:
    • keep them in your house, garden or business
    • sell them to other people
    • exchange them for goods
    • release them into the environment
    • let them breed or escape
    • import them into the UK
    • transport them within the UK
    • export them to other countries


  • What to do if you see American bullfrog for sale or other offences being committed: Make a report by following the guidance here.


  • What to do if you see this animal in the wild
  • This is an alert species, record it with a photograph (where possible).