The cycle of life continues in the rain forest
When I first conceived an artificial rain forest in my backyard I hoped we would see life reproduce. Not only the plants but in the rain forest animals we planned to introduce into the Exotic Rainforest. One evening in late May of 2006 four years after this experiment began,I was delighted to see it had begun to happen! We had seen baby anoles (lizards) from time to time but none of the tree frogs (3 species) had ever reproduced, at least none of which we were aware.
I often go into the rainforest after dark and listen to the crickets while the frogs bark and croak. On a few evenings before this night I realized I was hearing something new.,,,,baby frogs! I had no idea which species had reproduced in the pond but suddenly there they were, two tiny tree frogs staring back from the safety of a large leaf. One (the center photo) was barely 1 inch long and was likely a Barking Tree Frog. The second (in the inset lower right) was about 50% larger at 1 ½ inches and likely also a Barking Tree Frog. Both were sitting on the same White Bird of Paradise leaf.
The younger one was hungry since his abdomen was sunken but he showed signs of being in search of a meal. It was likely he had only recently emerged from the pond which was just feet away. The older was well fed because we release approximately 1500 baby crickets into the atrium once every month during the "wet" season and today had been feeding day!
The following day another tiny two inch baby (upper left) jumped right into my hands and then continued onto a leaf just below where I found it resting. From the color and its eye shape and color I believe this one is a Green Tree Frog.
Click the photo to the left to go to the south walk.