Hyla Versicolor, the Grey Tree Frog

The June woods are alive at night with the call of Hyla versicolor, Grey Tree Frogs.  They breed from April to August, with males gathering in trees near water and calling to the females.

The female selects a mate based on its call. She will lay her eggs in any available standing water: ponds, vernal pools, even old tires or swimming pools. The tadpoles hatch in four or five days and will change into froglets in about two months.

As their Latin name suggests, Hyla versicolor has the ability to change color, appearing green, gray, or brown.  It can be a solid color or can have blotches on its back and can change its color in seconds. It tends to appear darker when it is cold or dark.  Its coloring helps it blend in with tree bark.

When the mating season comes to a close, the Grey Tree Frogs return to the woodlands and edge habitats for a mostly solitary existence; eventually hibernating under leaves on the ground through the cold months and withstanding freezing temperatures by producing glucose as an anti-freeze.