Cope's gray treefrog

Gray Treefrog Resting on Steps by Todd Henson

A gray treefrog resting on the steps with grass in the background.

Sometimes you don’t have to look far to find wildlife to observe. I found this little gray treefrog resting on my front steps one afternoon. I almost didn’t notice it. It blended in fairly well with the concrete steps. But when I did notice I couldn’t stop myself from grabbing my camera and capturing a series of photographs.

The gray treefrog has turned its eye to the camera.

There are 2 species of gray treefrog in this area, Hyla chrysoscelis (also known as Cope’s gray treefrog), and Hyla versicolor (known as gray treefrog), virtually indistinguishable except by their call, their DNA, or in some cases their location. This little treefrog never called while I was around (they typically call at night). I don’t have DNA testing equipment. And both species appear to exist in my area. So I have no clue which of the 2 species this little frog was a member of.

Side view of a gray treefrog.

These treefrogs are typically only seen during the mating season, which can stretch from March to August for the gray treefrog, and from May to August for Cope’s gray treefrog. I photographed this one in mid-May 2018.

This gray treefrog never had a problem with me up close photographing it.

This is the first treefrog I’ve seen in my neighborhood. I used to see many at a friends house in another neighborhood, but they mostly disappeared after further construction began. I will have to keep my eyes open, perhaps I’ll see more this season. Have you seen any treefrogs in your neighborhood?


The resources below contain affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links. This is at no extra cost to you.

The Virginia Herpetological Society is a great resource for identifying and learning about reptiles and amphibians native to Virginia.

I also regularly make use of field guides, another great resource for identification and education: