LOCAL NEWS

SLC woman finds Cuban tree frog on bananas she bought

Apr 2, 2024, 2:22 PM | Updated: 6:52 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — A Salt Lake City woman was surprised to find a Cuban tree frog on bananas she bought at a wholesale warehouse last month, according to the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources.

The woman decided to call DWR.

DWR said in a social media post, “She did the right thing by not releasing it into the wild.  Instead, she called us to report it. One of our biologists came to pick it up.”

While maybe a bit of a surprise, it’s not unusual for the Cuban tree frogs to latch on to things.

“This species has large toe pads and are known to hitchhike on produce (especially bananas), tropical plants and vehicles,” the DWR post said.

There are several reasons for not releasing frogs and other stray animals found by good-intentioned people into the wild.

A DWR website listed the following reasons:

  • They could slowly starve to death
  • Become a tasty meal for a predator
  • Introduce harmful pathogens or parasites to native populations
  • Outcompete native species for limited food resources
  • Prey directly on native species
  • Survive, multiply and become an invasive species

DWR explained that a  biologist was able to adopt the frog as a pet, since it is legal to keep Cuban tree frogs for pets in Utah. However, they must go through a specific importation process.

Utah adopted new rules in 2020 to oversee collecting or possessing lizards, snakes and frogs.

DWR said depending on what your plans are for the animals, you may need a special permit or document.

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SLC woman finds Cuban tree frog on bananas she bought