Masked tree frog

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Masked tree frog
Masked tree frog Arenal.JPG
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Amphibia
Order: Anura
Family: Hylidae
Genus: Smilisca
Species:
S. phaeota
Binomial name
Smilisca phaeota
(Cope, 1862)
Synonyms[1]
  • Hyla phaeota (Cope, 1862)
  • Hyla baudini dolomedes (Barbour, 1923)
  • Hyla carinata (Andersson, 1939)
  • Smilisca phaeota phaeota (Smith, 1953)
  • Smilisca phaeota (Starrett, 1960)
For another species commonly known as the masked tree frog, see Smilisca manisorum.

The masked tree frog, New Granada cross-banded tree frog, Tarraco treefrog, or Central American smilisca (Smilisca phaeota) is a frog that lives in Honduras, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Costa Rica and Colombia. Scientists have seen it as high in the hills as 3300 meters above sea level.[1][2]

This frog is called the masked tree frog because it has dark skin around its eyes so it looks like it is wearing a black mask. The black mask covers their eyes, which helps them hide from predators.

This frog hides during the day and looks for food at night. The frog sleeps on top of large leaves, in ferns, or inside rolled-up leaves. Scientists think this frog eats insects and other animals without spines. This frog can change color. It can be tan during the day and turn green at night.[2]

The male frog sits next to a small pool of rainwater and sings "wrauk" for the females. The females lay 2000 eggs at a time, which float on the surface of the water. The tadpoles grow into frogs quickly before the rainwater dries up.[2]

Masked tree frog resting during the day.
Masked tree frog, from the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Smilisca phaeota (Cope, 1862)". Amphibian Species of the World 6.0, an Online Reference. American Museum of Natural History. Retrieved February 10, 2021.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Peera Chantasirivisal (January 18, 2000). "Smilisca phaeota: Masked Tree Frog, Central American Smilisca, Tarraco Treefrog". Amphibiaweb. Retrieved February 10, 2021.