When properly conditioned, White’s tree frogs are relatively easy to breed. They are a good choice for a first breeding project, but be prepared because a single successful breeding can yield thousands of tadpoles.
White’s Tree Frog Mating
White’s tree frogs are not as easy to sex as many other species of tree frogs. Sometimes a slight size difference is noted between adult males and females, with females being somewhat larger than males. The difference is not always noticeable though, so it’s helpful to use other cues as well. Males that have been calling excessively normally have a darkened throat. In addition, those that are in breeding condition develop dark nuptial pads at the base of their thumbs and, if these are present, it’s a sure sign that the frog is a male.
Both male and female White’s tree frogs vocalize so, unlike many other commonly kept species, a calling frog isn’t necessarily a male. Female White’s tree frogs call in response to hearing a male, and do so for much shorter periods of time. By observing their behavior while vocalizing it’s often possible to differentiate between males and females, with the males sending out their loud advertisement call usually perched high in the cage, while the shyer females are either silent or emit a few croaks here and there in response.
Conditioning of White’s Tree Frog
White’s tree frogs must be properly conditioned to breed in captivity. This period of conditioning can be stressful, so make sure only healthy frogs with good weight are exposed to it. Start by letting the terrarium cool until the temperature in the tank rarely rises above 70°F (21°C). Allow the humidity level in the cage to decrease as well, but ensure a source of clean water is always available for the frogs to soak in so that they can stay hydrated. During this period, feedings can be cut back, and even stopped all together once the coldest part of this simulated winter is reached.
If you live in a temperate region, it is easiest to condition frogs during the winter months when your house naturally cools and the air becomes dry. A cool basement may work well for conditioning White’s tree frogs as well. This artificial winter should last for about 6 weeks or slightly longer, after which time the frogs can slowly be warmed back up to their normal temperatures and feeding schedule.