Louisiana is a US state that is located in the country’s Deep South area. The state has a number of nicknames including the Bayou State, the Pelican State, Sportsman’s Paradise, Creole State, and the Boot. Louisiana was the 18th state into the union after its admission back on April 30, 1812. Just like any other group of people, the people of Louisiana have a number of state symbols ranging from a flag all the way to animals.
The official state amphibian of Louisiana is the diminutive green tree frog, which is scientifically known as Hyla cinerea. Colloquially, the frog is also known as the “bell frog” because of its mating call (for the males) that has been likened to a bell. The amphibian has been the official animal since June 22, 1993. Incidentally, the frog is also the state amphibian of Georgia. The frog was adopted after the state held a competition that ran for a whole year at the Louisiana Nature and Science Center. Student visitors to the center were allowed to vote on their favorite amphibian.
As the name suggests, the body of the frog is green with the shade of green ranging from bright to lime green. Depending on the temperature or the ambient light, the hue might change. Sometimes, the skin may have other colors in smaller quantities such as white, cream, pale yellow, or gold. In addition, it has a small body that has a length of about 2.5 inches. In terms of size, females are generally slightly larger than males. The males also have a vocal pouch on their throats, which is shown by a wrinkle. The call of the male varies depending on whether it is defending itself or looking for a mate.
The frogs are widely spread all over Louisiana in a number of habitats such as ponds, canals, swamps, ditches by the road, large lakes, streams, backyard swimming pools, and many more. On a larger scale, their range includes the area from southeast Florida all the way to Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Their habitats are characterized by things like grasses, a lot of floating vegetation, and cattails.
The green tree frog is a nocturnal animal, which means that it is mostly active at night, even in captivity. The creature is an insectivore with its diet including mosquitos, crickets, flies, and other small insects. Interestingly, studies have shown that the most active prey will be most likely eaten by the frog. The frog has an important role to play in the ecosystem since it is part of the diet for animals like fish, otters, snakes, and other animals.