Spot a red-eyed tree frog in Costa Rica

If you're into exotic wildlife, Costa Rica is the place for you. With a little patience and a good guide, you could see keel billed toucans, capuchin monkeys, three-toed sloths, or many other fascinating animals. Then there's this adorable creature, a red-eyed tree frog.

Costa Rica's red eyed tree frog Costa Rica has gorgeous wildlife, like this red eyed tree frog

Wildlife in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a top destination for watching wildlife, with coastal rainforests, inland peaks, and rare cloud forests providing a variety of habitats. They take conservation seriously here, with over 25% of the country protected in national parks and preserves (more than anywhere else in the world). It's no wonder that nature lovers and birdwatchers rave about Costa Rica.

The red-eyed tree frog

This cute little fellow is found mostly in the rainforests along the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica, so you might see him in Tortuguero (my personal favorite), though his range extends to other areas, too.

Living mostly in the trees instead of on the ground, these little frogs (about 2 inches long) are well adapted to climbing, and life in the treetops. They can even "parachute", spreading out their limbs to slow their fall as they leap to a lower position in the forest.

Red-eyed tree frogs are mostly nocturnal, and the big eyes are adapted so they can see well on a dark night in the rainforest. Why such red eyes? One theory is that they help protect the frog from daytime predators. When the frog opens its eyes, it can startle the attacker and give the frog a momentary advantage and chance for escape.

Some rainforest frogs have deadly poison in their skin, so that even a touch can kill a person. Don't worry - the red-eyed tree frog isn't one of them. Of course, it's still not good to touch them. When you spot one, just take a few pictures, and let him continue his dinner of yummy bugs.

Costa Rica travel tip

When you're exploring the rainforest, you'll spot a lot more wildlife if you have a knowledgeable guide to point it out. Otherwise, you could walk right by one of these beautiful frogs without even noticing!

Who knows what cool wildlife you'll find in Costa Rica? Be sure to have your camera ready! 🙂

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PHOTO CREDITS:  Carmen James


  1. Neil

    I had a great time in Costa Rica! We saw one of these, and some other kinds of frogs too.

    • Thanks, Neil! I loved Costa Rica too. All sorts of cool wildlife there, but my favorite was the howler monkeys. Wild!

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