Frogs don’t have ears, but they can still hear things around them. They have internal eardrums called the tympanic membranes, which sit right behind their eyes. Their hearing is quite good.
Some of the ways that frogs can sense their environment around them are quite incredible. One such mechanism is the tympanic membranes.
These are located behind the eyes of the frog and allow the frog to sense the sounds around it. They are also helpful for interpreting vibrations from the environment.
Do Frogs Have Earlobes?
No, frogs don’t have earlobes. They do have external hearing membranes called the tympanic membranes, which frogs will use to detect sounds and vibrations around them.
As humans, we usually connect the sounds we hear to our ears. Many animals we know, particularly mammals, have external ears and earlobes that will detect the sounds using the internal hearing organs such as the middle ear.
For that reason, we expect the animals without ears to not be able to hear.
But that’s not as simple as it sounds. This is especially the case with animals such as frogs, where hearing is enabled by external membranes and not ears or earlobes.
Frogs have a more complex hearing system than you might think. Through the membranes they have, they will detect sounds and vibrations.
These sounds will then pass through their nervous system and lungs to the mid-brain, which will enable the frog to interpret the sounds it is hearing.
Using these membranes, the frog can detect the frequency of the sound and its direction, which is crucial in nature. To receive this information, frogs will even communicate in ultrasound, such as the Odorrana tormota. They need to use ultrasound because of the loud environment they live in.
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Can Frogs Hear You?
Frogs can hear you pretty well because they use their tympanic membranes to interpret sounds from the environment. Even though they don’t have ears, they can hear sounds from around them quite well.
These hearing instruments are located behind the eyes of a frog. They are also visible at first sight, as you will be able to see them with your eyes. Some frogs have smaller membranes than others.
The size of the membranes and the distance between them will depend on the loudness of male mating calls.
When the membrane detects sounds it will vibrate. It can pick up vibrations of different frequencies – from low to high.
The membranes can also interpret where the sound is coming from. This helps the frog make out what the environment around it is looking like, and whether there are any threats.
The tympanum, or rather, the tympanic membranes, are connected to the lungs of the frog and the nervous system, too. The whole system is designed primarily to help the frogs respond to male mating calls, especially the mating calls from the same species. In that way, the frogs can hear a variety of different sounds.
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Why Do Frogs Have No Ears?
Frogs have no ears because they use tympanic membranes for hearing. These replace the role that ears play for frogs.
A tympanic membrane is, as the name says, a membrane that sits right behind the ear of the frog. This membrane has liquids inside that help transfer the sounds and the signals from the environment to the nervous system of the frog.
They need to use these membranes instead of having ears because they are often submerged underwater.
However, they will still need their hearing to be good once they come out of the water, allowing them to sense prey and predators in the wild and other tasks, too.
Ears would also hinder them if they were to go underwater. That’s why membranes are more practical for frogs. However, these membranes are also quite vulnerable, so frogs need to keep them protected. Even a small amount of damage can have long-lasting consequences for the hearing of a frog.
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Do Frogs Have Good Hearing?
Despite the fact that frogs don’t have ears as we do, they can still hear pretty well. They’re able to tell what’s going on around them using their hearing, but more importantly, they use it in combination with other senses, too.
The primary role of the frog’s hearing system is to make out whether they are in the vicinity of a potential mate. This is especially true for females, who have their hearing membranes adapted to the sounds of their mates.
They use selective hearing as they prioritize the sounds of their potential partners to other sounds.
More specifically, they focus on the sounds that mates from the same species make. This process of prioritizing sounds of potential mates is happening deep inside the brain of the frog.
But frogs, of course, use their hearing for other purposes, too. They can hear potential predators and their prey, as well. But in some cases, their hearing might not be enough, so they use it in combination with other senses, such as vibrations and sight.
Considering the size of the frog and their hearing membranes, it’s fair to say that their hearing is quite good.
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What Can Frogs Hear?
Frogs can hear the sounds around them, especially the sounds coming from their potential mates as well as the sounds of their predators and potential animals of prey.
Hearing is just another instrument that a frog would use to survive in its habitat. It’s of decent quality, although the frog would have to rely on other senses at the same time to get a better sense of their surroundings.
Frogs don’t have ears, but they still can hear pretty well. They will use the tympanic membrane to get a better sense of hearing.
This membrane allows the frog to hear the sounds from the environment, get a sense of where the mates are, and avoid potential dangers from predators. And because it is a membrane, it can also be quite vulnerable to the damage it might receive from the environment.
Stuart is the editor of Fauna Facts. He edits our writers’ work as well as contributing his own content. Stuart is passionate about sustainable farming and animal welfare and has written extensively on cows and geese for the site.