Sounds of the Radiant Rainforest

Enjoy a rare opportunity to experience the Fuqua Conservatory sights – and sounds – at night. During Garden Lights, Holiday Nights, the glass house becomes an entirely different place after the sun sets, when the cast of characters changes. Listen closely as the frogs call out to you!

As described by Dante Fenolio, Garden Conservation Scientist, the night crew includes four species of rain frogs in the genus Eleutherodactylus. All of these frogs are small (less than 1.5") and brown. One of them, the Puerto Rican “Coqui,” creates the most distinctive noise of the facility after the sun sets. The frog is named for its loud call, and if you listen carefully, you’ll hear them saying “Co-Qui.”

Listen to the other sounds and notice a loud single note call that sounds more like a whistle. Not surprisingly, it comes from another small and reclusive frog originally native to the Bahamas, the “Bahama Whistler.” Another species of rain frogs is the Cuban Greenhouse Frog, whose calls are much more difficult to hear; however, the night time vocalizations don’t stop there. The Conservatory has a healthy community of Tokay Geckos living high up on the trunks of the trees. They bark at night, creating a loud sound that some describe as a repetitive “Uh-Oh…Uh-Oh.”

You'll also hear the occasional trill of the Three Stripe Poison Frogs. These brightly colored and active frogs normally fill the day-time air with their calls, advertising to females and staking out territories.

None of these animals seeks out interaction with people, and all of them prefer to hide in the foliage, away from visitors. But enjoy their tropical ensemble as you move through the light show!