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Southeast Ecological Science Center

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Squirrel Treefrog
Hyla squirella
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Hyla squirella - Squirrel Treefrog
Appearance:  Squirrel Treefrogs are highly variable in coloration and may change between shades of brown, yellow, or green.  The pale green morph is most common, and resembles the appearance of the Green Treefrog, H. cinerea.  This species ranges in size from about 2 to 4 cm. (7/8-1 5/8 in.). Squirrel Treefrogs may have a vaguely defined light or dark lateral line (less extensive than that of H. cinerea) and dorsal or lateral blotches are usually present. This is a smooth-skinned species that often has a light upper lip. Males have a rounded subgular vocal sac.

Hyla cinerea - Green TreefrogHabits and Habitat:  Squirrel Treefrogs can be found in all types of habitats including:  open woodlands, cypress heads, pasture lands, gardens, and in and around houses.  This species exhibits some activity throughout most of the year (including warm spells during winter) and is commonly seen around houses, feeding on insects attracted to lights in the evening.

Vocalization:  The breeding call for Squirrel Treefrogs is a raspy "quank-quank-quank" call that is similar to the quacking of a duck.  The rain call is uttered frequently during warm, humid days, and is more rapid than the breeding call and sounds like a squirrel's churr. Squirrel Treefrogs frequently call from beneath their refugia, which may include aluminum siding or window shutters.

Reproduction/Egg Description: Breeding occurs from March to October in Florida and from April to August further north.  Breeding may occur in woodland or pasture ponds, flooded roadside ditches, or any suitable body of water.  Females may lay more than 800 eggs which may be deposited singly or in clusters.
Hyla squirella - Squirrel Treefrog
Distribution and Abundance: Squirrel Treefrogs occur throughout the Coastal Plain of the Southeast from eastern Texas East through all of Florida and northward to southeastern Virginia.  This species has also been introduced to Grand Bahama in the Bahama Islands. Throughout their native range, Squirrel Treefrogs are one of the most commonly-seen species since they frequently inhabit houses and other buildings. Like most amphibians, however, thorough evaluations of their population status have not occurred.

SE ARMI Index Sites: Everglades National Park, Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge



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