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|Distribution of Hemisotidae (in black)|
The shovelnose frogs are medium sized frogs, reaching a length of 8 centimetres (3.1 in). They are round-bodied, with short legs. Their head is small and narrow, with a hard, upturned nose.
The shovelnose frogs are digging frogs. They live most of their life underground. The female will dig underground while it is in amplexus. It then will lay the eggs in an underground hole. The male will leave through the tunnel, and the female will stay with the eggs. Once enough rain has fallen, the female will dig, with her nose, towards a water source. The tadpoles will stay there until metamorphosis. The tadpoles may stay out of water for up to a few days.
Unlike most digging frogs, the shovelnose frogs dig head first. Other frogs dig rear first.
Some species are kept as pets.
- Genus Hemisus
- Hemisus barotseensis - Mongu Shovelnose Frog (Channing & Broadley, 2002)
- Hemisus brachydactylus - Masiliwa Shovelnose Frog (Laurent, 1963)
- Hemisus guineensis - Guinea Shovelnose Frog (Cope, 1865)
- Hemisus guttatus - Spotted Shovelnose Frog (Rapp, 1842)
- Hemisus marmoratus - Marbled Shovelnose Frog (Steindachner, 1863)
- Hemisus microscaphus - Lake Zwei Shovelnose Frog (Laurent, 1972)
- Hemisus olivaceus - Olive Shovelnose Frog (Laurent, 1963)
- Hemisus perreti - Perret's Shovelnose Frog (Laurent, 1972)
- Hemisus wittei - Witte's Shovelnose Frog (Laurent, 1963)
- Zweifel, Robert G. (1998). Cogger, H.G. & Zweifel, R.G.. ed. Encyclopedia of Reptiles and Amphibians. San Diego: Academic Press. pp. 101–102. .
- Cogger, H.G.; R.G. Zweifel, and D. Kirschner (2004). Encyclopedia of Reptiles & Amphibians Second Edition. Fog City Press.