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The Hip-Pocket Frog



The Hip-Pocket Frog
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 5
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.41

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    mating, mites, temperate, thumbnail, surprising, gills, marsupial, surrounding, predator, finding, lays, rocks, onto, centipede, teeny, birth
     content words:    Hip-Pocket Papa


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The Hip-Pocket Frog
By Cindy Grigg
  

1     Hip-pocket frogs live in the temperate rainforest of Australia. They live in the leaf litter on the forest floor. They are not often seen because their coloring blends in with their surroundings. They also hide under logs or rocks.
 
2     These tiny frogs are no bigger than a thumbnail. They are also called marsupial frogs. That's because they have pouches like marsupials. Kangaroos and other marsupial mammals have pouches on their tummies where their young develop after birth. But the marsupial frog has pouches on its hips, like hip-pockets. But what is surprising about these tiny frogs is that it is the male who has the pouches and cares for the young.
 
3     These unusual frogs do not lay their eggs in water. After mating in late spring (November in Australia), the female lays a glob of jelly and eggs among the leaves on the forest floor. The glob has from ten to twelve eggs in it. Both parents stay close by. They guard the eggs from predators that might eat them. If a predator, such as a centipede, gets too near, the parent frogs eat it!

Paragraphs 4 to 8:
For the complete story with questions: click here for printable



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