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Not proud...

Posted by Leekle2ManE Lady Lake, FL 9a (My Page) on
Sat, Oct 6, 12 at 21:31

...but not feeling guilty either. I think. Tonight I was sitting out in the lanai, enjoying the breeze and watching the storms pass to the west of me. My attention was attracted by movement out of the corner of my eye and I look over to see a HUGE tree frog on the side of my house. I went inside and grabbed my flashlight and came back out, but it had moved. So I sat back down and just waited and wondered. Then I saw movement in my sweet potato vines and focused the flashlight on the spot. There it was. And just as the flashlight settled on it, I saw another, much smaller tree frog leap away.

I walked over to it and took a good look at it. It was so very much larger than any tree frog I had ever seen. After taking in many identifying markings, I went back inside and looked up 'Florida Tree Frogs' and started to compare images. Sure enough, it turned out I had one of the Cuban Tree Frogs. I knew from another post that these were invasive, but being one part naturalist (not the running around nekkid type, but the appreciation for the natural order type) and one part pacifist, I was hoping that they were merely a minor nuisance. But as I read on this species of tree frog, I realized I couldn't just let it go. So I donned a pair of rubber gloves and went back out to search through my potato vines again. It only took a little bit, but I found it again and now there is one less Cuban Tree Frog in my area.

I say I'm not feeling guilty, but since I'm relaying the story, there must be some guilt there... but... it had to be done.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Not proud...

There is a human way to kill them if you feel that you must. It involves putting Oragel in a 1 in strip segment on their spine or belly (I can't remember which I would suggest looking it up. This is the only proven human method.


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RE: Not proud...

I do the same with Cane Toads, but I do feel proud of it. Each Toad killed saves a lot of native wildlife and reduces the breeding of more toads, even if not by all that much.


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RE: Not proud...

  • Posted by katkin 9b/10a PSL,Fl (My Page) on
    Sun, Oct 7, 12 at 7:41

I feel the same way about Cuban Tree frogs and Cane Toads, they are invasive intruders that kill the natives. Since we started killing the Tree frogs we have now many green lizzards that are the natives here and endangered. My hubby has to do the deed though, I have to admit. He attached a nail with duck tape to a piece of PVC and uses it to impale them. It is an instant kill.

My friend lost her standard poodle to a cane toad. The dog tried to bit the toad. Protecting my much smaller dog is more important to me.


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I throw them to the ducks.....they dispose of them and the ducks aren't required to be humane.


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RE: Not proud...

I admit my method probably wasn't very humane. I mixed up a small concoction of Pine Sol and Formula 409 in an old ice cream bucket, tossed the toad in and put the lid on. Some small, twisted part of me says its justice given the noxious nature of the frog's skin, but I just couldn't bring myself to violently end the frog's life. That said, I now know of UF's method of humanely euthanizing the frogs which involves Benzocaine and freezing. I don't have any benzocaine on hand, so that wouldn't have helped last night, but I will be getting some and keeping it on hand for future incidents. I am also fighting my pacifist side and debating with it over setting up 'tree frog homes' to catch any other cubans in the area and getting rid of them too.

I have a very healthy community of brown and green anoles in my yard as well as blue tailed skinks. There even some Puerto-Rican crested anoles and some Mediterranean geckos. The lizard population is so plentiful that I'm somewhat surprised that I only see one coachwhip/black racer a year and even released a young black racer in my yard that would have been killed by my mother-in-law. So I'm hoping this cuban tree frog is only a 'scout' and not a sign of huge population. But where there is one, there is going to be others, so I need to be ready.


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RE: Not proud...

  • Posted by sis3 9b N. PInellas (My Page) on
    Sun, Oct 7, 12 at 9:50

I use the Benzocaine method and have never needed to do the freezing part. They stay dead! It's the only time in my life I have killed anything bigger than a bug and it sickens me every time for quite a while, but it simply has to be done!


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RE: Not proud...

  • Posted by karalynn z9 FL, Inverness, Ci (My Page) on
    Sun, Oct 7, 12 at 10:32

Several days ago I was out in the evening picking some of the white butterfly flowers to bring into the house when I found 3 large cuban tree frogs hanging out in the plants. My way may or may not be humane but I went inside and grabbed a sandwich bag to try and catch the frogs. I managed to grab one but the other two escaped. Into the freezer it went. Two nights later I caught a second one and it to went into the freezer too. Now I just need to find the third one. I figure the freezer should be a fairly painless way to kill them. This is the first time I've seen the big cuban tree frogs in several years. I think the reason they are moving back in is due to the milder winter we had last year.


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RE: Not proud...

Freezing them is actually somewhat humane. The drop in temp makes them go into hibernation mode, so they actually fall asleep before their internal temp drops low enough and freezes them to death. The benzocaine as I understand it kind of knocks them out so that they don't panic while trapped in the bag. But from Sis's comment, I guess the benzocaine itself can actually kill the frog. The reason I didn't freeze the one I found last night is because the rest of my family was already asleep and I didn't want someone waking up in the morning, going to the freezer for bacon and finding a Frog-cicle staring at them.


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RE: Not proud...

I use the plastic sleeve that my newspaper is delivered in. Slip it over my hand & arm, grab the frog, pull the plastic off with the frog inside, tie a knot & toss it into the freezer. Works great!


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RE: Not proud...

I'm sorry yall, but your methods seem far less humane to me than just smashing them. I used to swat them hard with my hand and it would smash their skulls and spine and everything else in one quick blow. I have no doubt it was fairly painless and quick. Getting drugged, or put into vats of pine sol, or captured and put in a plastic bag and then into the freezer sound far worse to me.

Sort of like lethal injection.... That's not humane. I've shot plenty of things and I can tell you that a shotgun blast to the brain is the quickest, most humane way to end it all. I couldn't imagine the sheer terror of feeling the needle and then the drugs effects.

As for me, I gave up on killing the Cuban tree frogs. There's just way too many of them and my actions didn't appear to make a difference. Plus I was tired of their bodies falling down and making food for fire ants.


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RE: Not proud...

  • Posted by brute Florida 9B (My Page) on
    Sun, Oct 7, 12 at 14:28

I also don't bother killing Cuban Tree Frogs. As has already be said, there are just too many of them. Also, they aren't interested in eating my fruit and veggies (unlike "cute & cuddly" varmints like coons, squirrels, birds, and rabbits!). While I hate to hear that they are a threat to our native, smaller tree frogs, I'm willing to bet that the Cubans are big enough to tackle palmetto bugs at night. I've never understood why some of my neighbors hate our local bobcats, coyotes, foxes, and owls. My opinion goes: "Anything that eats cottontail rabbits is a friend of mine!" If Cuban Tree Frogs turn out to be bigtime palmetto bug eaters, they'll be my friends as well.


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RE: Not proud...

>I'm willing to bet that the Cubans are big enough to tackle palmetto bugs at night

They don't. They'd much rather have a nice juicy lizard or baby bird. I suppose if they managed to clear out everything else they might go for palmetto bugs, but probably only after they'd exhausted the supply of regular flying insects.

I've watched them around here when palmettos are out. The frogs just ignore them--palmetto bugs must be too crunchy for them or just taste bad.


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i let them live, our meager elimination of unwanted things is totally never going to work. bilge tanks spewing in every port, your never going to stop it, why kill something.....just my thoughts....live and prosper here.....


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I was horrified when I realized we had inadvertently moved some Cuban Tree Frogs and Caribbean Anoles with some yard stuff here when we moved up from Tampa. After the first couple of winters the Cubans are long gone, but the lizards are here to stay.


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RE: Not proud...

Orajel works just fine, they fall asleep and don't wake back again. I need to get back in the habit, my mother threw out the tube I had b/c she couldn't figure out why I kept a tube stashed in a flower pot outside. ;)


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