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Ghost Glass Frog

Sachatamia ilex


Also known as the Limon Giant Glass Frog, this is the largest glass frog species in Central America. Males having a sv length of up to 29mm and females a little larger at up to 34mm. The dorsal surface is bright emerald green and the ventral a very pale green to translucent. The frogs inner organs can be seen under the skin. The nostrils are prominent on top of the snout and the eyes are striking being silver with black reticulations and point forward. Toes are webbed and fingers less so.


Found in very humid foothill forest, this individual was above a small fast running stream in near darkness under foliage in the Tapanti National Park in Costa Rica. As a species it is found from southern Nicaragua down to northern west Colombia and a small area in north Ecuador.


Although listed as Least Concern, like a lot of amphibians one of the biggest risks to this species is habitat loss. The message is getting through to many in Costa Rica. This is a wonderful creature found in an incredible country.

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32 Comments (1–25)

Neil Ross
Neil Ross 4 years ago

How did I miss this one? Reminds me of the hypnotoad from The Simpsons. An amazing spotting, Rob. Congratulations.

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you Antonio. I am glad you enjoyed this little guy. I included several images at different angles. I think the rear view really shows off the forward facing eyes.

These guys are just "impossibe",a transparent body is a kind of super hero feature :-) Great series Robert,first shot is super cool,congrats on the well deserved SOTD and thanks for sharing

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you Felix, Rach and Michael for your kind comments. They are very appreciated.

Michael Strydom
Michael Strydom 5 years ago

Congrats on SOTD!! another really great shot!! :)

remkinloch 5 years ago

Congratulations on your SOTD. Great images of an amazing little creature!

Felix Fleck
Felix Fleck 5 years ago

Amazing little fella! Nice shots, Rob. Congrats!

DanielePralong 5 years ago

Congratulations Robert, this mesmerizing frog is our Spotting of the Day:

"A Ghost Glass Frog (Sachatamia ilex) shows remarkable dark reticulated patterns on its irises in our Spotting of the Day! Eye morphology is often used to describe and classify frogs, with criteria such as pupil shape and iris coloration and patterns. Sachatamia ilex belongs to the family Centrolenidae, a diverse group of arboreal frogs from the neotropics that shows spectacular variations in iris coloration and patterns between species. Figure 8 in the following paper shows a wide assortment of irises of centrolenid frogs: "



triggsturner 5 years ago

Thanks for the comment Leuba. Yeah, those eyes are quite hypnotic!

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway 5 years ago

Unreal !!

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you for your comment James.

JamesPriest2 5 years ago

Amazing looking eyes. Great pic

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you for the nomination Ashley and thank you Maria for your kind comment.

Maria dB
Maria dB 5 years ago

What a beautiful frog and wonderful photo series!

AshleyT 5 years ago

Your spotting has been nominated for the Spotting of the Week. The winner will be chosen by the Project Noah Rangers based on a combination of factors including: uniqueness of the shot, status of the organism (for example, rare or endangered), quality of the information provided in the habitat and description sections. There is a subjective element, of course; the spotting with the highest number of Ranger votes is chosen. Congratulations on being nominated!

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thanks Hema. It's a brilliant country and generally thier attitude toward thier wildlife was fantastic. I would go back any time.

Hema  Shah
Hema Shah 5 years ago

I was in Costa Rica this April too.Loved the place .

Hema  Shah
Hema Shah 5 years ago

Amazing details and very cute frog.

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you Dawn for your comment and support of this spotting.

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you Pam. And thanks for the explanation, all I could think of was the kids texting so much thier eyes went funny! Lol. Now it makes a bit more sense ;)

That is an awesome find!

pamsai 5 years ago

Wonderful series of Photos Rob... and I agree with everyone, the eyes are amazing. And as Mark said, it looks like the kids were let loose with Texta colours, or at the very least a ball point pen, and scribbled on those eyes! In Australia Texta Coloured Pencils are the set all the kids want.

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you Rach for your comment. Much appreciated.

remkinloch 5 years ago

Great series of photos, and yes, those eyes are amazing. I think they look like painted china bowls. Incredible detail on something so tiny.

triggsturner 5 years ago

Thank you guys for your great comments and support. The eyes definitely have it! Mark, what is Texta and why shouldn't the kids play with it? I am intrigued.

Spotted by

Cartago Province, Costa Rica

Spotted on Apr 12, 2018
Submitted on Nov 26, 2018

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