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The Zoo has one colony of hourglass tree frogs on exhibit. The frogs in this colony are all descendants of 15 original frogs which arrived from Houston Zoo on December 8, 2006.
These guys are all over the place in their enclosure. They clearly prefer to rest on the underside of the leaves of the Dieffenbachia plant in their habitat.
Reptile and Amphibian House
Hourglass tree frogs have a short stubby face; the color is a dark golden yellow with large brown markings all over the dorsal parts and legs. Sometimes the yellow body parts are speckled with tiny brown dots as well. Individuals can change colors, depending on the time of day and level of stress.
Hourglass tree frogs are short lived, usually lasting less than 3 years.
These mainly arboreal frogs are very common in disturbed forests throughout their range. Frogs are mainly active at night, but can bee seen hopping around in the late afternoon or after rain.
The males call very actively from floating or emerging vegetation directly above water during any rain. Peak calling activity occurs in the late afternoon/early evening, and tapers off about an hour after dark. Females select a mate and travel some distance to a secure place, where they usually lay the eggs above water. However, if the eggs are laid too high, they might fall pray to ants or dry out, and if they are placed too close to the surface, they might end up submerged and fall pray to fish and other cannibalistic tadpoles.
Very small tree frog; males measure about 18 - 24 mm in snout-vent length while females are a little bit larger, measuring from 24mm - 46 mm.
Both sexes range in weight from 1 to 3.5 g.
In the wild these frogs prey on a variety of small invertebrates but preferentially consume moths. At the Zoo, the frogs are offered a variety of invertebrates including, fruit flies and crickets.
Found mainly in the tropical low lands and mid elevation humid forest of the southern Central America and northern Colombia with some populations interspersed as far north as Mexico and as far south as northern Ecuador.
Conservation at a Glance
Learn more about the amphibian conservation efforts at the Philadelphia Zoo.
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