Australian Green Tree Frog

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Other common names: Common Green Tree Frog; White's Tree Frog; White’s Dumpy Tree Frog; Dumpy Tree Frog

Scientific name: Litoria caerulea

The Basics:
This very “laid-back”, beautiful frog is one of the best pet choices for either novice or experienced amphibian fans. Often described as “droll” by owners, the Australian Green Tree Frog is among the hardiest and most long-lived of all frogs.

The natural range covers much of northeastern Australia and southern New Guinea. Introduced populations are established in Florida, USA and New Zealand.

The Australian Green Treefrog is very adaptable, and may be found in tree canopies near canal and river edges, brushy swamps, or far from water in the rain-filled hollows of Eucalyptus trees. It also occurs in and around suburban gardens and homes.

Appearance / Health:
The Australian Green Treefrog is stout in build, with an average length of 2-4.5 inches. Fatty ridges top the eyes, and there are large adhesive discs on the toes. The body color changes with environmental conditions, and may be yellowish to brilliant green or brown. Some individuals are flecked with white or gold spots, while others are blue or teal in body color. Breeders have produced interesting color morphs.

Well-cared-for pets may live to 20+ years of age. Obesity and digestive tract blockages resulting from ingested substrate are the most commonly encountered health problems. Obese individuals deposit layers of fat above the eyes and on the back, giving rise to the name “Dumpy Tree Frog”.

Behavior / Temperament:
Australian Green Treefrogs are nocturnal, but will readily awaken to feed by day. They are among the calmest of all amphibians, seemingly completely at ease with human company.

While they will readily hop onto the hand for a meal, these friendly creatures should be handled only when necessary, and then with wet hands so that the skin’s protective mucus is not removed. Amphibian skin secretions may cause irritations when transferred to their owner’s wounds, eyes, or the mouth.

Australian Green Tree Frogs do well in groups if provided enough space and cover. High-style aquariums that allow climbing space are ideal. A 30 gallon tank makes a good home for 2 adults.

Sphagnum or carpet moss may be used as the substrate, as these are difficult to swallow. Washable terrarium liners also work well. Cork bark rolls, branches, plants and vines should be provided. Stout live plants in pots (i.e. Snake Plants, Cast Iron Plants) will be appreciated and well-used.

These hardy survivors can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, but fare best when kept at 75-85 F. Treefrogs do not require Ultra-Violet B light, but anecdotal evidence indicates that low levels of UVB, along with UVA, may be of some benefit.

The terrarium should be misted at least twice daily. They need only a simple water bowl, which should be changed daily. Chlorine and chloramine must be removed from water via liquid preparations available at pet stores.

Alternatively, Australian Green Treefrogs can be housed in terrariums decorated with live plants and branches overhanging several inches of water. Undergravel, or submersible turtle filters may be used in the water sections of treefrog terrariums.

A highly-varied diet is essential. Crickets alone, even if powdered with supplements, will not support long-term health. Provide your pet with roaches, sow bugs, crickets, locusts, butterworms, calciworms, cultured houseflies, silkworms, and other commercially available insects. Insects should be offered a healthful diet for several days before use.

Most meals should be coated with a powdered Calcium/Vitamin D3 supplement. A vitamin mineral supplement may be used 2-3x weekly.

Males may be distinguished from females by their loose, gray vocal sacs and smaller size. A cooling-off period of 6 weeks at 65 F (after a week-long fast) will often spark breeding activity. Following hibernation, the frogs should be placed in 4 inches of water with some cork-bark. The air temperature is then gradually raised to 82 F, and the water to 82-85 F. A commercial rain chamber, or increased misting, is useful in stimulating breeding behavior.

Gravid females produce 100-2,000+ eggs, which are deposited at and just below the water’s surface. At 82 F, the tadpoles hatch within 24-48 hours. They may be reared on a diet of fish food flakes, commercial tadpole pellets, algae tablets, and par-boiled kale. Metamorphosis is achieved in 4-6 weeks.

Written by Frank Indiviglio


hilarious adults, brilliant emerald green, Adorable babies, comedic expression, longlived.Low cost


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silky skin, tree dwelling species, docile smile, education programs, amazing noises

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