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Contact information
For information on Wisconsin's rare vertebrate animals, contact:
Rich Staffen
Conservation Biologist
For information on Wisconsin's rare invertebrates, contact:
Jay Watson
Conservation Biologist

Blanchard's Cricket Frog (Acris blanchardi)



Blanchard's Cricket Frog (Acris blanchardi), listed as Endangered in Wisconsin, prefers ponds, lakes, and a variety of habitats along and adjacent to streams and rivers including, marshes, fens, sedge meadows, low prairies, and exposed mud flats. The species tends to breed in quiet water (no or low flow) and may also move from streams and rivers to adjacent wetlands and ponds. Cricket frogs cannot tolerate freezing or complete inundation for more than 24 hours during the winter and thus seek a variety of microhabitats that provide suitable overwintering conditions, including crayfish burrows, small mammal burrows, rotted-out root channels, seepage areas where groundwater flow prevents freezing at the surface or spaces created by sloughing streambanks. Cricket frogs are active from early March through November. Breeding can occur from mid-May through mid-August, with some larvae not transforming until late September. See the species guidance document for avoidance measures and management guidance from the Natural Heritage Conservation Program.

State status

Status and Natural Heritage Inventory documented occurrences in Wisconsin

The table below provides information about the protected status - both state and federal - and the rank (S and G Ranks) for Blanchard's Cricket Frog (Acris blanchardi). See the Working List Key for more information about abbreviations. Counties shaded blue have documented occurrences for this species in the Wisconsin Natural Heritage Inventory database. The map is provided as a general reference of where occurrences of this species meet NHI data standards and is not meant as a comprehensive map of all observations.

Note: Species recently added to the NHI Working List may temporarily have blank occurrence maps.

Documented locations of Acris blanchardi in the Natural Heritage Inventory Database as of July 2015.
Summary Information
State StatusEND
Federal Status in Wisconsinnone
State RankS1
Global RankG5
Tracked by NHIY

Species guidance

This document contains identification and life history information for Blanchard's Cricket Frog. It also describes how to screen projects for potential impact to this species, lists avoidance measures, and provides general management guidance.

Cricket Frog Species Guidance [PDF]




Blanchard's Cricket Frog

Adult cricket frog (WI Endangered).

Photo by Robert Hay, WDNR.

Blanchard's Cricket Frog

Blanchard's cricket frog calling from shallow water covered by lesser duckweed. Each duckweed "frond" is about 2 mm long, which gives a sense of scale for this diminutive amphibian.

Photo by Rori Paloski, WDNR.

Blanchard's Cricket Frog

Photo © A.B. Sheldon.

Blanchard's Cricket Frog

Photo © A.B. Sheldon.

Blanchard's Cricket Frog

Juvenile cricket frog.

Photo by Rori Paloski, WDNR.

Blanchard's Cricket Frog

Green adult cricket frog - this species can change color based on their surroundings.

Photo by Rori Paloski, WDNR.

Wildlife Action Plan

Wisconsin Wildlife Action Plan graphic

Natural community (habitat) associations

The table below lists the natural communities that are associated with Blanchard's Cricket Frog. Only natural communities for which Blanchard's Cricket Frog is "high" (score=3) or "moderate" (score=2) associated are shown. See the key to association scores for complete definitions. Please see the Wildlife Action Plan to learn how this information was developed.

Ecological landscape associations

The table below lists the ecological landscape association scores for Blanchard's Cricket Frog. The scores correspond to the map (3=High, 2=Moderate, 1=Low, 0=None). For more information, please see the Wildlife Action Plan.

This map shows the probability of Blanchard's Cricket Frog occurring in each of Wisconsin's Ecological Landscapes.  Actual scores can be found in the table to the left.

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Landscape-Community combinations of highest ecological priority*

Ecological priorities are the combinations of natural communities and ecological landscapes that provide Wisconsin's best opportunities to conserve important habitats for a given Species of Greatest Conservation Need. The 10 highest scoring combinations are considered ecological priorities and are listed below. More than 10 combinations are listed if multiple combinations tied for 10th place. For more information, please see the Wildlife Action Plan.

* Ecological priority score is a relative measure that is not meant for comparison between species. This score does not consider socio-economical factors that may dictate protection and/or management priorities differently than those determined solely by ecological analysis. Further, a low ecological priority score does not imply that management or preservation should not occur on a site if there are important reasons for doing so locally.

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Issues/threats and conservation actions

Conservation actions respond to issues or threats, which adversely affect species of greatest conservation need (SGCN) or their habitats. Besides actions such as restoring wetlands or planting resilient tree species in northern communities, research, surveys and monitoring are also among conservation actions described in the WWAP because lack of information can threaten our ability to successfully preserve and care for natural resources.

Threats/issues and conservations actions for rare animals

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Last revised: Thursday, October 08, 2020