Adults range from 1.9-5.6 cm in length. Specimens are either greenish or brownish in color, often with dark stripes that often run the length of the body (Stebbins 2003). Males have a tan or greenish throat while the throat of females is typically white. Hyla eximia tadpoles have a brown dorsum with minute silvery-gold flecks, and a dark venter tinged with pale gold (Stebbins 2003).
Distribution and Habitat
Country distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Mexico
U.S. state distribution from AmphibiaWeb's database: Arizona, New Mexico
This species is generally found in the mountains (Sierra Madre Occidental to Guerrero) of Arizona, New Mexico, and Mexico (Degenhardt 1996). Hyla eximia usually reside at high elevations, ranging from 900 m to 2900 m. This species is also found along streams, in wet meadows, in coniferous forests, and temporarily in roadside ditches. An isolated population exists in the Huachuca Mountains in Arizona.
Life History, Abundance, Activity, and Special Behaviors
Breeding occurs during summer, starting during the rain in early July with metamorphosis generally occurring by late August. Newly hatched tadpoles are 4.9-5.2 cm in length with tails that compose roughly one half to two-thirds of their bodies. The tails slowly decrease and metamorphosis occurs when the tadpoles reach 38 mm (generally 6-11 weeks). The breeding period can be from two to eight days. Both long duration and ephemeral breeding sites have been found; site location is dependent on weather and density of predators in a given area. Eggs are laid in small clusters attached to vegetation (New Mexico Department of Game and Fish).
Trends and Threats
Survival is 5x greater in the absence of salamanders. Other threats include predation and competition from introduced species (nonnative fish including bass and catfish, and crayfish), limited distribution and restricted ranges, and overcollection.
Relation to Humans
Hyla eximia have very toxic skin, which can irritate human eyes after handling (Stebbins 2003).
Degenhardt, W.G., Painter, C.W., and Price, A.H. (1996). Amphibians and Reptiles of New Mexico. University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque.
Stebbins, R. C. (2003). Western Reptiles and Amphibians, Third Edition. Houghton Mifflin, Boston.
Written by Prathna Mehta (p_mehta AT berkeley.edu), UC Berkeley
First submitted 2004-10-06
Edited by Kellie Whittaker (2009-11-02)
Feedback or comments about this page.
Citation: AmphibiaWeb: Information on
amphibian biology and conservation. [web application]. 2015. Berkeley, California:
(Accessed: Apr 27, 2015).
AmphibiaWeb's policy on data use.