Knocking Sand Frog (Tomopterna krugerensis)

View the above photo record (by Darren Pietersen) in FrogMAP here.

Find the Knocking Sand Frog in the FBIS database (Freshwater Biodiversity Information System) here.

Family Pyxicephalidae

KNOCKING SAND FROG – Tomopterna krugerensis

Passmore & Carruthers, 1975



T. krugerensis inhabits the Savanna Biome at altitudes ranging from sea level to 1500 m, in areas with annual rainfall of 500–>1000 mm. It seems to prefer sandy soils and breeds in temporary water bodies such as large and small pans, vleis, and floodplains.


Breeding begins after the first rains and continues into midsummer. Males call from the open or from partially concealed positions at the water’s edge. Approximately 5000 eggs are laid singly in shallow water (Passmore and Carruthers 1975). The tadpoles and details of development are unknown.

Status and Conservation

T. krugerensis is widespread and does not require conservation measures.


T. krugerensis is distributed in a broad band across southern Africa, from northeastern South Africa and southern Mozambique, through southern Zimbabwe and Botswana to Namibia and southern Angola. Its distribution in the atlas region is rather patchy, especially in Limpopo and North West provinces. This may be due to the fact that only distribution records based on advertisement calls have been included in the map. It is almost indistinguishable, morphologically, from T. cryptotis and T. tandyi, but has an easily recognizable call. The distribution records are therefore reliable in terms of the present taxonomic status and diagnosis of this species. The southernmost record is from Hluhluwe (2832AB) in KwaZulu-Natal.

Further Resources

Virtual Museum (FrogMAP > Search VM > By Scientific or Common Name)

More common names: Sandveld-sandpadda (Afrikaans)

Recommended citation format for this species text:

Channing A, Tippett RM.  Knocking Sand Frog Tomopterna krugerensis. BDI, Cape Town.
Available online at

Recommended citation format: 

This species text has been updated and expanded from the text in the
2004 frog atlas. The reference to the text and the book are as follows:

Channing A 2004 Tomopterna krugerensis Knocking Sand Frog. In Minter LR
et al 2004.

Minter LR, Burger M, Harrison JA, Braack HH, Bishop PJ, Kloepfer D (eds)
2004. Atlas and Red Data Book of  the Frogs of South Africa, Lesotho and
Swaziland. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, and Avian Demography
Unit, Cape Town.

Ryan Tippett
Ryan Tippett
Ryan is an enthusiastic contributor to Citizen Science and has added many important and interesting records of fauna and flora. He has been a member of the Virtual Museum since 2014 and has currently submitted over 12,000 records. He is on the expert identification panel for the OdonataMAP project. Ryan is a well-qualified and experienced Field Guide, and Guide Training Instructor. He has spent the last 18 years in the guiding and tourism industries. Ryan loves imparting his passion and knowledge onto others, and it is this that drew him into guide training in particular. Something that he finds incredibly rewarding is seeing how people he's had the privilege of teaching have developed and gone on to greater things. His interests are diverse and include Dragonflies, Birding, Arachnids, Amphibians, wild flowers and succulents, free diving and experiencing big game on foot. With this range of interests, there is always likely be something special just around the corner!

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