Frog Identification Keys - Hyla (Treefrogs)

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  • Gray Treefrog (H. chrysoscelis and versicolor)

  • Green Treefrog (H. cinerea)

  • Pines woods Treefrog (H. femoralis)

  • Barking Treefrog (H. gratiosa)

  • Squirrel Treefrog (H. squirella)


Gray Treefrog (H. chrysoscelis and versicolor)

The two species of gray treefrog, chrysoscelis and versicolor found in Virginia are identical in physical appearance and therefore have been grouped together. The two species differ in the number chromosomes, with versicolor having twice as many as chrysoscelis. The males of each species differ in their calls, with chrysoscelis having a fast, high-pitched trill and versicolor having a slower lower-pitched trill. Unfortunately, the speed of these calls varies with temperature making identification based on the call prone to error.

  • The call of chrysoscelis  

  • The call of versicolor  

  • Light spot below eye.

    Concealed surfaces of hind limbs orangeish in color.

    Known distribution of Hyla chrysoscelis in Virginia Known distribution of Hyla versicolor in Virginia

    Green Treefrog (Hyla cinerea)

    Medium sized treefrog, up to 60 mm SVL. Usually bright green with a light colored stripe extending back below the tympanum to typically near the groin. In some populations the lateral stripe maybe short or completely absent. Often, small light colored flecks on back.

    Light colored flecks on back.

    Light colored lateral stripe.


    Known distribution of H. cinerea in Virginia

    Click For additional information on H.cinerea

    Pines woods Treefrog (Hyla femoralis)

    A small treefrog with a maximum SVL of 44mm. usually reddish brown in color, but color can vary greatly. The best way to identify this species is by the light colored, usually orange, yellow or whitish spots on the rear of the thigh.

    Coloration can vary greatly, but usually reddish brown Light colored spots on the rear of the thigh.


    Known distribution of H. femoralis in Virginia

    Click For additional information on H. femoralis.

    Barking Treefrog (Hyla gratiosa)

    * State Endangered *

    A large, stout treefrog reaching a maximum SVL of 70mm with a very limited known distribution in Virginia. Color and pattern vary considerable but usually greenish with many dark rounded spots. Often with a light, well defined stripe on the upper lip.


    Known distribution of H. gratiosa in Virginia.

    Click for additional information on Hyla gratiosa

    Squirrel Treefrog (Hyla squirella)

    A small treefrog reaching a maximum SVL of 41mm. Coloration and pattern are extremely variable, ranging from greenish to brown, spots may be present of absent. Often with a dark spot between the eyes.


    Known distribution of Hyla squirrela in Virginia

    Click For additional information on H. squirrela.

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