Did you know the word “amphibian” means “two lives”? All amphibians start their lives in the underwater, but after they go through a series of metamorphosis stages to adulthood, most trade gills for lungs and live the rest of their lives out of the water. Florida is home to 33 native and non-native species of frogs and toads, and many more species of salamanders, newts and sirens!
Not all frogs of the Hylidae family are actually found in trees as some are completely terrestrial, but all of them share many similar taxonomical characteristics. Florida has seven native species of tree frogs, all of which are under direct threat from the invasive, larger and more aggressive Cuban tree frog.
True toads are widespread and are native to every continent except Australia and Antarctica, inhabiting a variety of environments, from arid areas to rainforests, and most lay eggs in paired strings that hatch into tadpoles. While the Sunshine State doesn’t have that many native toads (most common is the Southern toad), some of the invasive species such as the invasive cane toad can be highly toxic, and even dangerous to pets.