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Black-eyed Leaf Frog

Black-eyed Leaf Frog, Agalychnis moreletii,

agalychnis_moreletiiDescription: Although commonly known as the Black-eyed Leaf Frog, this iris of this species is actually an extremely deep red colour. Their flanks are usually bright orange in colour but this colour can be lacking from some populations. This nocturnal species is quite large, with females reaching 58mm in size and males being slightly smaller. The hands and feet of this species are only partly webbed and they have only a limited ability to engage in the gliding behaviour performed by some of the other leaf frogs. This species also lives at higher elevations than most other leaf frogs and can be found living at up to 1300m asl. As they have adapted to be only able to live at slightly cooler temperatures than most other leaf frogs, this may be contributing to their decline, as the chytrid fungus responsible for many amphibian population declines thrives at cool temperatures.

Reproduction: During the onset of the rainy season, males descend from the canopy to congregate around temporary pools, ponds and even lakes. Once at a suitable breeding site, males begin to call in a small chorus. Once a female is attracted and amplexus is achieved the pair deposits a clutch of up to 75 eggs on leaves, roots and on occasion rocks above the surface of the water. The tadpoles hatch after 7-10 days of development and drop into the water below. Metamorphosis from tadpole to small frog can take up to 200 days.

Diet: Invertebrates.

Distribution: Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, El Salvador and Southern Mexico. Populations within this range are extremely restricted.

Conservation status: Critically Endangered

Watch a video of Black-eyed Leaf Frogs at Manchester Museum


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