Cuban Tree Frog in action

This post is also available in: Dutch.

This picture, mailed to us a while ago by Pieter de Kort, shows quite clearly why we rang the emergency bell regarding the Cuban Tree Frog (see this article). What hangs out of the beast’s mouth are the remains of a gecko (Hemidactylus mabouia). This specific species of gecko is exotic to Curacao, like the tree frog itself, so you could say: good riddance. But if the frog is indulging in the imported geckos, then the already less common local gecko species undoubtedly are also on the menu.

Although we expected this type of predation to happen, actually seeing it is something else…..

Mr. de Kort describes the captured scene as follows:

This might be one of the species under threat, the Phyllodactylus martini. This juvenile was only 5 centimeters in length.

The attack of the frog on the gecko was very violent and spectacular. The frog stuck itself to the window with his suction cups, his legs had a span of about 25 centimeters. He gobbled up the gecko completely in only a few seconds. Unfortunately, I did not have my camera at hand at that time. Then it took another half an hour before the frog finished devouring the still moving tail of the gecko.

Research and intervention is needed. In the coming year we are going to try to put this problem on all relevant agenda’s.









2 Responses to “Cuban Tree Frog in action”

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  1. Garrick Marchena says:

    What is the best way to dispose of these frogs??

    • Leon Pors says:

      What we do is catch them (requires some fast reflexes) and then freeze them. This is the most pain-free way to kill them. They basically fall asleep (because of their cold-bloodedness) and then freeze to death.