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Cope’s Gray Treefrog

Fact File

Scientific Name: Hyla chrysoscelis

Classification: Amphibian

Size: Up to 2.4 inches

Identifying Characteristics

Cope’s Gray Treefrog is similar in size and morphologically indistinguishable from the Gray Treefrog. In Virginia, distribution and call are the best ways to distinguish these species.


This species can be found in a variety of forested habitats throughout the Coastal Plain and in portions of the southern Piedmont along the Fall Zone. It is absent from most of the central and western Piedmont and mountainous areas of the state. It also occurs in far southwestern Virginia south and west of the New River Valley where it replaces the Gray Treefrog in the upper Tennessee River drainage.

Did You Know?

Common name honors the famous naturalist Edward Drinker Cope

Role in the Web of Life

This species breeds from April-August in almost any slow moving or still body of water, including artificial water sources such as buckets and pool covers. Small packets of eggs are deposited in shallow water sometimes attached to vegetation. Their advertisement call is similar to the Gray Treefrog, but with a higher frequency and faster trill rate.

Last updated: January 22, 2024

The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources Species Profile Database serves as a repository of information for Virginia’s fish and wildlife species. The database is managed and curated by the Wildlife Information and Environmental Services (WIES) program. Species profile data, distribution information, and photography is generated by the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources, State and Federal agencies, Collection Permittees, and other trusted partners. This product is not suitable for legal, engineering, or surveying use. The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources does not accept responsibility for any missing data, inaccuracies, or other errors which may exist. In accordance with the terms of service for this product, you agree to this disclaimer.