Tenerife frogs enjoy the rainfall

by BardofEly

Tenerife in the Canary Islands is a subtropical island with very little in the way of freshwater but surprisingly two species of frog manage to live there.

Two species of frog live on Tenerife
It may come as a surprise to many people to learn that there are two species of frog thriving on Tenerife, even though the island has very few natural sources of fresh water and is often very hot and dry. However, both the Iberian Water Frog (Rana perezii) and the Stripeless Tree Frog (Hyla meridionalis), which were introduced here, have been able to use the reservoirs, water tanks and ornamental garden pools for breeding purposes.

Iberian Water Frog

Rana perezii

The larger of the frogs of Tenerife is the Iberian Water Frog, or “Rana Comun,” and it spends most of its life in an aquatic environment and mainly feeds on insects. On Tenerife they can be seen in the pools in Parque García Sanabria in Santa Cruz, in the large ponds in the countryside at outside the village of Erjos and in many other locations. They even live in ornamental pools in the garden of Las Gangarras restaurant in Buzanada, in the south of the island.

Iberian Water Frog

Rana perezii
water frog

Stripeless Tree Frog or Mediterranean Tree Frog

Stripeless Tree Frog (Hyla meriodonalis)
Stripeless Tree Frog (Hyla meriodonalis)

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The Stripeless Tree Frog

Also known as Ranita

The Stripeless Tree Frog, which is known in Spanish as “Ranita” or “Rana Verde,” is often found on farms and banana plantations where it breeds in the reservoirs and irrigation tanks. It eats insects and spiders and can often be heard singing at night and in spring they are quite loud because of their numbers. This smaller species of frog is also known as the Mediterranean Tree Frog.

Both species of frog found on Tenerife are also on the other Canary Islands and are the only amphibians that live here.

When this was written in 2009 we had had the wettest winter and spring and the most rainfall in 15 years, according to the press, and all the reservoirs and water tanks were full again. The frogs were very happy with the situation even though the tourists and many other people don't like the wet weather. Frogs could be heard croaking away in chorus on many a banana plantation and farm. I could even here some from my balcony and I love the sound.

2012 Drought

Now it is 2012 and the other extreme with regard to the weather because we have had the worst drought since 1948 and the island is tinder dry. All the reservoirs are empty and the Erjos ponds dried up in spring. The people who live in Tenerife are all praying for rain and the frogs will be so happy when it arrives too!

Copyright © 2012 Steve Andrews. All Rights Reserved.

Tree Frogs calling

Updated: 01/10/2013, BardofEly
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