Today I’m sharing six photographs of Green Tree Frogs that I took at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma. In four of these photos, the frogs are perched on blades of Johnson grass. The final two photos shows a frog on an American Lotus plant.
As you can see in the images, these tiny frogs blend in remarkably well with the leaves they’re sitting on, especially the Johnson grass. The blades have a distinctive white midrib, while the frogs’ undersides are pale and their backs are green. They don’t have a stripe down their backs, but their coloration matches the contrast of the leaves. When I first start looking for them each summer, I really have to train my eyes to spot them among the foliage. But after finding my first one, it gets much easier to pick out their shapes.
Green Tree Frogs are native to the southeastern United States and are common in wetland habitats. They get their name from their arboreal nature and bright green coloration. Like most tree frogs, they have large toe pads to grip onto branches and leaves. They typically grow to around 2 inches long.
Their camouflaging coloration helps them avoid predators like birds, snakes, and raccoons. By matching the contrast of the leaves they sit on, they can remain undetected both by predators and unsuspecting photographers like me! Getting shots like these takes patience and a keen eye. But capturing their incredible camouflage abilities is a rewarding challenge.
I’m always amazed by the adaptations frogs have evolved to thrive in their environments. Their leaf-mimicking coloration is just one example of the ingenious ways they evade detection. Photographing camouflaged creatures like these frogs allows me to appreciate and share their subtle beauty. I hope these images inspire you to look more closely at the living things around you! Let me know if you spot any well-hidden frogs out there this summer.
- Camera: Canon EOS R5
- Lens: Canon RF 100-500 mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM
Technical Details: First Photo
- Location: Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge (Oklahoma)
- Date and Time Taken: July 23, 2023 (07:26A. M.)
- Program: Manual
- Aperture: f8
- Shutter speed: 1/800
- ISO: 5000 (Auto)
- Exp. Comp.: 0
- Focal Length: 500 mm