Litoria aurea Click to enlarge image
Green and Golden Bell Frog, Woodberry Image: G Little
© Australian Museum

Fast Facts

  • NSW Conservation Status
    Endangered species
  • Classification
    Species
    aurea
    Genus
    Litoria
    Family
    Hylidae
    Order
    Anura
    Subclass
    Lissamphibia
    Subphylum
    Vertebrata
    Phylum
    Chordata
    Kingdom
    Animalia
  • Size Range
    8.5 cm

Description

A large species of frog reaching up to 8.5 cm in body length. It has a bright green back with gold patches, although it can become almost completely dark brown when the frog is cold or inactive. The belly is white. The pupil is horizontal and the iris is gold. The groin and the backs of the thighs are bright blue. Fingers are unwebbed and toes are nearly completely webbed, both with small discs. This species sometimes basks in the sun, one of few Australian frogs to do so.



Breeding Biology

Eggs are laid as small clusters in water, sometimes sinking and attaching to vegetation at the shallow edges of permanent lagoons, dams, and ponds. Tadpoles can reach a total length of up to 8 cm; they are dark in colour when in the early stages of development, but later on show green and gold patches on their bodies. They often swim in the mid-depths and surface areas of water bodies, and take three to eleven months to develop into frogs. Breeds during spring and summer.

Similar Species

Looks very similar to Litoria castanea and Litoria raniformis in its distribution, but lacks bright yellow patches on the back of the thighs as present in Litoria castanea, and has smoother back skin than Litoria raniformis.

Distribution

Formerly common along the east coast from northeastern VIC to northeastern NSW and inland to the southern highlands and ACT, but has declined severely due to the amphibian chytrid fungus. It is now only known from small populations in north coastal NSW, the Sydney Basin, Broughton Island, select locations in the southeast highlands and coast, Sydney and northeastern VIC.



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