Red-Eyed Tree Frog, Tortuguero, Costa Rica

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This is one picture I really wanted to take during this trip in Costa Rica. I was able to on our very last day in the country. I’ve seen beautiful pictures of this frog everywhere, and each time I’ve been amazed by these colors.

The humid rainforests of Costa Rica are home to the vibrantly colored red-eyed tree frog, also known as the red-eyed leaf frog or gaudy leaf frog. The body of this iconic amphibian is lime green with blue and yellow striped flanks and with white along the underbelly and inner legs.

Despite their striking coloration, red-eyed tree frogs are not poisonous. The most prominent physical characteristic of Agalychnis callidryas is their bright red eyes. This vivid eye color is a natural defense against potential predators known as startle coloration. If disturbed, the frogs open their large red eyes and expose their brilliant orange feet. Birds and snakes are often so startled by the sudden flashes of color that they hesitate momentarily, allowing valuable seconds for the frog to escape.

Nocturnal carnivores, they camouflage themselves in the rainforest canopy and ambush insects, moths and occasionally smaller frogs using their long, sticky tongues.

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