Anura Hyla cinerea -- Green Treefrog
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Purple shade indicates vouchered specimens. Light blue (cyan)
shade indicates photographic records. Yellow shade indicates verified
sighting. Slanted hatch indicates pre-1980 records only
NOTE: Not all specimens upon which these maps are based have been verified.
Key Characters: Smooth skin; large toe pads; white or pale yellow stripe from upper lip to groin.
Similar Species: Gray treefrogs.
Description: Medium-sized (up to 6 cm SVL) bright green, yellowish green, olive green, or lime green frog with a few small splatters of gold or white. Belly clear pale yellow to white. Male slightly smaller than female. The male has a wrinkled throat indicating a vocal pouch.
Habitat: Open brushy borders of cypress swamps, floodplain sloughs, cattail marshes, lakes, and farm ponds.
Natural History: Adults and juveniles are seen on roads during and after rain. Diet consists of insects. Can change between dark and light green depending on temperature and lighting. Perches by day on upright cattail or other plant while legs are tightly tucked under body. Breeds late May to August. Males call, sometimes in large choruses, from button bush, swamp rose, lily pads, or other shoreline plants, and calls sound like a series of metallic honks, similar to cow bells or barking dogs. Eggs are laid under water surface and are attached to roots of floating vegetation. Embryos hatch in a few days and tadpoles transform in two months. Juveniles often feed in nearby grassy fields in late summer and autumn.
Status: Has been introduced in a few areas north of its natural range. Locally abundant in extreme southern counties where cypress and tupelo occur in dense stands.