Hourglass Frog (Dendropsophus ebraccatus)

Look for this frog in our New World Tropics Building. 


These small tree frogs are dark golden yellow with large brown markings all over their backs and legs. Sometimes, the yellow body parts are speckled with tiny brown dots as well. These frogs can change colors, depending on the time of day and level of stress. They range in size from .7 to 1.8 inches in length and weigh 1 to 3.5 grams. Females are larger than males.


Moist subtropical and tropical lowland forests, freshwater marshes, permanent and temporary marshes, pastureland, plantations, disturbed forests, and ponds.


Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua and Panama.


Mostly moths but will prey on a variety of small invertebrates.

Life Span: 

Short lived, typically up to 3 years.

Family Life: 

The way the Hourglass frog reproduces is unique: They are the only vertebrate known to lay eggs both on land and in the water. They lay eggs in shade, on the leaves of plants above water. If no shade is available, they will lay their eggs on submerged vegetation. Once the froglets hatch, they fend for themselves.


These small frogs are currently listed as Least Concern due to their broad range and habitat tolerance.