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St. John USVI Fauna: Cuban Tree Frog (Osteopilus septentrionalis)

st john fauna: Cuban tree frog


Native to Cuba and the Bahamas, the Cuban Tree Frog is considered an invasive species that can now be found in Puerto Rico, the US and British Virgin Islands, on several other Caribbean islands and on the US mainland.

st john fauna: Cuban tree frog
Toe Pads

The Cuban tree frog is easily distinguishable from other frogs on St. John due to its large size, from three to four inches long and by its prominent toe pads.

The Cuban tree frog need water in which to breed and their tadpoles can often be found in cisterns, pools in guts and other places where water might accumulate. They have a big appetite and like to eat all kinds of insects, lizards and other frogs as well as just about anything else that they can get into their mouths.

Unlike the melodious sounds made by the small native Virgin Island tree frogs, the Cuban tree frog makes a shrill, loud, annoying sound like door hinges, badly in need of oiling. To make matters worse, the mucus on their skin is said to be toxic causing skin irritations if touched. (Although I have touched them and nothing happened.)