Nature's alarm clock failed this Duluth frog

A Duluth frog who woke up from an abbreviated hibernation was lucky to land at an animal rehab center
Author:
Updated:
Original:

If you've ever mistakenly set your alarm too early, you know what a bummer it is to realize you're missing out on some needed sleep.

But what if your alarm went off three months early?

There's a frog in Duluth whose body clock went so haywire the little amphibian started hopping around at Christmas time.

That could be a fatal mistake for a cold-blooded critter who's supposed to spend the winter months hibernating. At least this one had the good fortune to land on a sidewalk where a couple of compassionate Minnesotans noticed the frog was out of its element.

They brought it to the Wildwoods animal rehab center, where the staff opened their doors to the cold little froggy on Christmas eve.

Frogs hibernate?

It's not quite the same as a bear in a den, but yes, frogs hibernate.

There are lots of different kinds of frogs and they each do things a little differently. But as cold as it is here in Minnesota, all of our 14 different kinds of frogs and toads shut down for the winter.

Their heart and breathing rates slow down to almost nothing and most of them quit moving. Frogs who live in water often do this below the surface or in muddy areas at the edge of a pond. They need to be around moving water, though, because that's where they get their oxygen.

Toads and others who live on land usually dig down below the frost line, although some may just bury themselves under leaves.

Scientific American and the Ontario parks have more basics about frog hibernation.

One tidbit we learned: for some frogs it's actually OK for their bodies to freeze in the winter. High glucose levels act like antifreeze to protect their heart and lungs so those will work again when everything else defrosts in the spring.

Or on Christmas eve, in the case of a certain rogue froggy in northeastern Minnesota.

Next Up

ambulance

State Patrol investigating fatal crash near Duluth

The crash was reported around 6:15 a.m. Wednesday.

eden prairie police squad car

Carjacking reported outside shopping center in Eden Prairie

One of the suspects reportedly displayed a weapon.

court gavel

8 people charged in Medicaid fraud scheme totaling $860K

Collectively, they're charged with 46 counts of felony theft.

vaping

Minnesota gets mixed grades on its tobacco report card

In Minnesota, the economic cost due to smoking is $2.519 million with 5,910 deaths per year attributed to smoking.

Hardy Wills-Traxler

Charges: Man stabbed his father, set his home on fire

The 25-year-old has been charged with second-degree murder and first-degree arson.

Impound lot

Crowded impound lot raises COVID concerns after Minneapolis snow emergency

A vehicle owner complains about the tightly-packed impound lot following the weekend's snow.

covid-19, coronavirus

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Wednesday, Jan. 27

The latest update from the state health department.

charley's

Charges: Bar owner, employee served underage drinkers during shutdown

The bar hosted 20-30 people on Dec. 4, 2020, charges say.

police lights

Driver wearing bulletproof vest strikes pedestrian in Rochester

The 21-year-old claimed the vest keeps him warm, according to police.

Related

Nature's alarm clock failed this Duluth frog

A Duluth frog who woke up from an abbreviated hibernation was lucky to land at an animal rehab center

Bats don't have snooze alarms – so take them to the Rehab Center

Our warm temperatures have some bats coming out of hibernation early – before their breakfast is ready.

Bats don't have snooze alarms – so take them to the Rehab Center

Our warm temperatures have some bats coming out of hibernation early – before their breakfast is ready.

Things are getting even worse for Minnesota frogs

Scientists have found another disease that's killing them.

Duluth zoo animals will get those pearly whites checked, thanks to donation

The gift helps replace equipment the zoo lost in a flood nearly five years ago.

Duluth zoo animals will get those pearly whites checked, thanks to donation

The gift helps replace equipment the zoo lost in a flood nearly five years ago.

Steven Seagull is back at his favorite Duluth hotel for the ... 17th year?

Yes, Steven Seagull is a seagull, and he's been a regular at the Super 8 hotel in Duluth for up to 17 years.

Steven Seagull is back at his favorite Duluth hotel for the ... 17th year?

Yes, Steven Seagull is a seagull, and he's been a regular at the Super 8 hotel in Duluth for up to 17 years.