Cuban Treefrog (Osteopilus septentrionalis) **INVASIVE SPECIES**

CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Cuban Treefrog (Osteopilus septentrionalis) **INVASIVE SPECIES**

There is no denying they can be cute from a distance, but up close they are slimy and messy and can produce allergic reactions in people.

A BIG invader which is threatening Florida’s ecosystems as they eat and out compete our native species of treefrogs. They hide in dark places and can short circuit electric lights or your water softening system threatening your pocketbook.

They are back! and because of the lack of a hard freeze this year (in these parts), the numbers are on the rise. I already caught three in the last three days and I’ve seen a couple more that I couldn’t reach. Those caught are in the freezer awaiting trash pickup.

If you find them, euthanize them using the methods suggested by the University of Florida.


Here’s a photo from 2009 when they invaded my bird houses. Cute, but they have to go!


    • Also I forgot to ask – how do you positively ID one of these? The pictures I’ve seen show them with a wide variety of coloration. We have many tree frogs in our yard and I would like to know which ones to watch out for.

      • Loret said:

        Hi Salty!

        They have large toepads and the center of their head is fused to the skull and the eyes are real bugged out. The following site has pretty good identification methods and if you aren’t sure you can email them a picture and they will help with the identity. They’ve helped me when I wasn’t sure. You can find a link there to a pdf which really has detailed identification methods.

        The one that it most closely resembles for me is the Pinewoods Treefrogs. Pinewoods are easily identified by the orange dots on the underside of their rear legs whereas Cubans have bluish colored bones in the rear legs. The cubans also emit a slime whereas the natives don’t seem to do this.

        You are so right about the variety of coloration. It still confuses me at times. Good luck and thanks for stopping by!

      • Thank you sooo much for the info! This is something I have been wondering about for some time. You are a big help! I will visit the links you provided 🙂

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