Hyla versicolor

| 19 Comments

Photograph by Darren Garrison.

Garrison.Hyla_versicolor_on_hickory_tree.jpg

Hyla versicolor–gray tree frog.

If you can’t see the frog, just go below the fold.

frog_outline.jpg


Your irascible judges generally do not discuss their decisions, but we frankly ruled out this remarkable example of camouflage because, well, there is no picture there.

My own pattern-recognition system is not so hot, and I simply could not find the frog until Mr. Garrison directed me to the photograph with the red outline. Once I identified the frog, however, I now see it immediately in the upper photograph. I have noticed the same phenomenon before, for example, in connection with photographs of the peppered moth – once I finally identify the moth, I see it immediately the next time I see the same photograph. People in the audience when I gave a talk on the peppered moth told me they experienced the same phenomenon. Still, I am fortunate that I do not have to rely on frogs’ legs for my sustenance.

19 Comments

My 11 year old (home sick) saw it right away.

Wow. Just… wow. It took a couple of minutes to find him.

When I first looked at the pic the caption was off-screen and I thought “nice yellow polka-dot moth there.” Then I could see the (rest of the) frog. Great pic!

The real question is: did you evil evolutionists use glue or a pin to affix the frog to the tree like that? :)

I honestly didn’t see the frog until after the jump. Such camouflage is obviously too complex to have arisen by chance! Just think of all the neon pink and chartreuse frogs that would have had to die just trying to evolve a mottled grey/brown/green scheme like that!

Amazing! - What are the yellow dots: eggs?

It’s the natural coloring of their hind legs. Click the picture for a link to Wikipedia.

eric said:

The real question is: did you evil evolutionists use glue or a pin to affix the frog to the tree like that? :)

If you’ve ever handled treefrogs before, you’d realize that they come equipped with their own adhesive.

Reed A. Cartwright said: It’s the natural coloring of their hind legs.

See also http://community.middlebury.edu/~he[…]or_photo.jpg

Was the right rear leg injured? I don’t see how the lower/ventral of the femoral portion was exposed?

Cool photo.

These frogs also seem to have some sort of color change ability– I used to find them often, sometimes almost white, sometimes dark. I’m not sure if it is color changes, though, or different individuals with a range of colors. Here are two of them (or the same one in two colors) on an “elephant ear” leaf:

http://s313.photobucket.com/albums/[…]ogonleaf.jpg

http://s313.photobucket.com/albums/[…]hitefrog.jpg

Mother nature’s photoshop?

D. P. Robin said:

My 11 year old (home sick) saw it right away.

He wouldn’t happen to be color blind, would he?

It’s interesting because a lot of color blind people cut through camoflauge very easily - another interesting adaptation…

FWIW: I’m partially colorblind and I saw it in <1 second.

That *really* looks like a Photoshop job. (It isn’t, of course)

Wow, indeed - great photo! I saw the frog in a moment but the real point is: would I see it in the wild? Especially if I was a hungry snake?

would I see it in the wild? Especially if I was a hungry snake?

Nope - and I think that’s the point!

Henry

It’s interesting because a lot of color blind people cut through camoflauge very easily - another interesting adaptation…

A colleague of mine was telling me yesterday that the Canadian Army back in WW2 preferred colour-blind soldiers as scout/snipers for that very reason.

It’s interesting because a lot of color blind people cut through camoflauge very easily - another interesting adaptation…

Makes sense. After all, camouflage is adapted or designed to fool a particular type of sensory system, and depends on the particular traits of that system. Change the sensory system, and camouflage adapted (or designed) for the old one won’t work with the new.

Henry

the outline makes it harder for me to see the frog.

I saw it. Thanks for share such a puzzle image.

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This page contains a single entry by Matt Young published on October 12, 2009 12:00 PM.

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