Amero-Australian Treefrogs: Hylidae
Hourglass Treefrog (hyla Leucophyllata): Species Accounts
Physical characteristics: The hourglass treefrog, which is also known as the Bereis' treefrog, is a small, slender, reddish brown frog that looks as if someone has dabbed it with streaks of cream or yellow paint. A triangle of color covers the head from one of its large eyes to the other and down onto its short, rounded snout. The color continues down each side of the smooth body, leaving a somewhat hourglass-shaped patch of brown in the middle of the back. An oblong cream or yellow patch sits on the rump, and additional rounded or oblong patches dot the front and back legs. It has long, thin legs, and its toes are tipped in rounded pads. In some individuals, the toes are yellow. The undersides of its legs are orange, as is the slight webbing between its toes. Males are 1.3 to 1.5 inches (3.3 to 3.6 centimeters) from the snout to the rump. Females are larger at 1.6 to 1.8 inches (4.0 to 4.4 centimeters) in length.
Geographic range: This treefrog makes its home in northern South America, from northern and western Brazil through Bolivia to Peru, and also in Colombia, Ecuador, Suriname, French Guiana, and Guyana.
Habitat: It lives in hot and humid, lowland rainforests. Tadpoles develop in shallow ponds.
Diet: It mainly eats moths, but will also eat other small insects. Tadpoles swim to the pond bottom and feed on large bits of plants and other items underwater.
Behavior and reproduction: The hourglass treefrog is active at night, when it climbs through trees looking for food. To mate, a male begins calling from a spot in plants above a pond. His call may be three to eight notes long, with the first being the longest. When a female approaches, he positions himself on her back, clutching her near her front legs, and she lays her eggs. One female can lay about six hundred eggs, which she drops onto the plants. In five to seven days, the eggs hatch into tadpoles, which plop down into the water below.
Hourglass treefrogs and people: It is occasionally seen in the pet trade.
Conservation status: The IUCN does not consider this frog to be endangered or threatened. ∎
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