California red-legged frog

noun

: a large, long-legged frog (Rana draytonii) native to California and adjacent parts of northwestern Mexico that is typically yellowish-brown to reddish-brown with irregular black spots and blotches and has red on the undersides of the belly, legs, and feet
Workers would also be barred from draining ponds that flood every winter because of the risk of drying out the egg masses laid by California red-legged frogs, a federally threatened species.Julia Scott, San Jose (California) Mercury News, 26 Sept. 2011

Note: The California red-legged frog closely resembles the northern red-legged frog (Rana aurora) and is sometimes classified as a subspecies (Rana aurora draytonii).

Word History

First Known Use

1921, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of California red-legged frog was in 1921

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Cite this Entry

“California red-legged frog.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/California%20red-legged%20frog. Accessed 29 Jan. 2023.

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