Pseudacris sierra — Sierran Treefrog
Also known as:
Sierra Chorus Frog, Pacific Chorus Frog
These frogs were classified as P. regilla until 2006, when molecular studies by Recuero et al split that species into three.
There are always treefrogs aplenty at Frog Pond. Pacific Treefrogs have the chirping cricket-like call familiar from countless old movies, because they were easy for Hollywood moviemakers to locate and record.
Little just-metamorphosized froglets swarmed near the reservoir on this warm July morning. Right at the water's edge dozens of them frolicked in the reeds and leaped into the water at the first sign of danger. Ten or twenty feet away in the mostly dry mud where the creek flows in wetter times of year, every rock, log, and pine cone harbored piles of the little critters. They scurried away quickly when exposed, but I managed to get this picture showing at least seven frogs in one pile. There were at least a dozen when I first moved the rock, but several had escaped before I could focus and shoot.
This tan-and-green beauty was hiding in some ground cover at the edge of a pond. Pacific Treefrogs range from pure green to pure brown to interesting mixtures like this.
This frog was very large for this species, nearly two inches long. It was under a log near a small temporary pond teeming with tiny tadpoles. It was very chubby and my guess is that it was a she ready to let loose her eggs in the pond.
Here's a pretty young Pacific treefrog on the forest floor, a few feet from Little River.
Along with the Western Fence Lizard, this is another of the few species that I've seen so often and in such quantity that I usually don't bother taking any more photographs of them. But this beautiful little green guy caught my eye so I took a little time away from the snake fest to capture a few photos.
For some reason, all of the Pseudacris regilla that my friend Andrew and I saw around the edges of Bear Gulch Reservoir, and there were many, were this basic shade of tan. Not the most exciting color for a frog. But they are still cute li'l guys.
I had to take our camper van to the Dodge dealership in Watsonville for some recall service. I dropped it off and wandered over to the nearest good-looking habitat, which happily featured a rainbow of Pseudacris sierra.
- Basey, H. E. 1976. Discovering Sierra Reptiles and Amphibians
- Behler, J. L., King, F. W. 1979. The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Reptiles & Amphibians
- Crother, B. I. (ed.) 2017. Scientific and Standard English Names of Amphibians and Reptiles of North America North of Mexico, with Comments Regarding Confidence in Our Understanding, Eighth Edition
- Elliott, L., Gerhardt, C. and Davidson, C. 2009. The Frogs and Toads of North America
- Henson, P., Usner, D. J. 1993. The Natural History of Big Sur
- Miller, A. H., Stebbins, R. C. 1973. The Lives of Desert Animals in Joshua Tree National Monument
- Schoenherr, A. A. 1992. A Natural History of California
- Shedd, J. D. 2005. Amphibians and Reptiles of Bidwell Park
- Stebbins, R. C. 2003. Peterson Field Guide to Western Reptiles and Amphibians, Third Edition