Australasian tree frogs are found in Australia, New Guinea and the surrounding islands. The number of species is currently believed to be around 150, however, this estimate is continually growing as new species are discovered. There is enormous variation in the colour, size, behaviour and habitat of these tree frogs. For example, some species are almost incapable of climbing, yet others rarely leave the trees.
Scientific name: Litoria
Will an unidentified tree frog turn out to be a new species?
While out on a collecting trip, George McGavin finds a small brown frog on a leaf. He collects and takes it back to camp for identification. Frog expert, Alan, identifies it as a tree frog, and thinks that it's either a new species, or on its way to being a new species.
The shading illustrates the diversity of this group - the darker the colour the greater the number of species. Data provided by WWF's Wildfinder.
The Australasian tree frogs can be found in a number of locations including: Australia. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.
Litoria is a genus of Hylidae tree frogs native to Australia, the Bismarck Archipelago, the Solomon Islands, New Guinea, the Lesser Sunda Islands, the Moluccan Islands, and Timor. They are sometimes collectively referred to as Australasian treefrogs. They are distinguishable from other tree frogs by the presence of horizontal irises, no pigmentation of the eyelids, and their Wallacean distribution. There are (as of mid-2008) almost 150 species, but as several new species are described every year on average; by 2010, the number of known species is likely to exceed 150.
The species within the genus Litoria are extremely variable in appearance, behaviour, and habitat. The smallest species within the genus is the javelin frog (L. microbelos), reaching a maximum length of 1.6 cm[verification needed], while the largest, the giant tree frog (L. infrafrenata), reaches a size of 13.5 cm. The appearance, behaviour, and habitat of each frog is usually linked. The small, darkly coloured frogs are generally terrestrial, and will never, or infrequently, climb. The larger, green species are usually arboreal and some will only venture to the ground to breed.