Its unique habit of skittering on the water surface was first recorded by the Mughal Emperor Babur (1483-1530) in his autobiography. This is the skittering frog, also known as the Indian skipper frog, a common frog widely distributed throughout South Asia.

indian skittering frog, euphlyctis cyanophlyctis

I was surprised and happy to find that such details were recorded by the first Mughal Emperor of India. I was more surprised to know that Babur had indeed written an autobiography! Babur came from Persia, and his views on the newly conquered Hindustan are written in his biography. Links to the translated pdf version is given below with the references.

Babur writes, along with the events of the year 932: “The frogs of Hindustร„ยn are worthy of notice. Though of the same species as our own, yet they will run twelve or fourteen feet on the face of the water”.

indian skittering frog, euphlyctis cyanophlyctis

The skipper in these pictures was a permanent resident of our fish pond. Fortunately it feeds mostly on aquatic and non-aquatic insects and we didn’t see any of our fishes disappear ๐Ÿ™‚ The frog usually floats near the vegetation. If disturbed, it skips on the water surface, to some distance. Further provoked, it plunges into the depths.

Date:ย Nov-Dec, 2007
Location: @ home, Kottayam, Kerala, India
Camera: Nikon D80ย | Olympus C770UZ and macro lenses

1. Khan and Tasnim,ย 1987. A field guide to the identification of herps of Pakistan. Part I: Amphibia, Monograph No. 14. Biological Society of Pakistan, Lahore, pp.1-27 [
pdf: cross-reference].
2. Memoirs of Zehร„ยซr-ed-Dร„ยซn Muhammed Bร„ยbur, Emperor of Hindustan, written by himself in the Chaghatร„ยi Tร…ยซrki language and translated by John Leyden, Esq., M.D. and William Erskine, Esq. Annotated and Revised by Sir Lucas King, C.S.I., LL.D., F.S.A. [
Vol I] [Vol II] 3. Dr. S.D.Biju, University of Delhi

Related posts