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Pet World Visit
Who can tell the sexes of African dwarf frogs at this age?
Cute but Slow: Obviously you added one of these guys to your aquarium because they’re cute. However, they can be hard to keep – mainly because your fish eat all their food before these guys hear the dinner bell. By the time dwarf frogs start looking for food, it’s gone. If you turn the lights off, you do give these guys a feeding advantage. Their smellers work well. Better yet, give them a tank all to themselves.
Origins: Dwarf frogs originally came from the warm parts of West Africa. The dwarf frogs sold today are spawned commercially, not captured from the wild. Our last 200 pack came from Hong Kong. We’re not sure of the exact species because they’ve probably hybridized.
Size: Way smaller than clawed frogs. Compare them to the size of the penny in the earlier picture. Baby dwarf frogs often come in at ½-inch – very hard to keep. Look for inchers or better. They may cost a smidge more, but they’re worth it. The teeny ones just sit back and let even little neons eat all their food. Adults will breed at the huge size of 1.25 inches.
Totally Aquatic: Although they breathe air, dwarf frogs stupid enough to crawl out of your tank will dry up quickly. Keep your water down a bit to discourage escapees. Better yet, keep them covered. Dwarf frogs love to crawl out. (None of these frogs score high on the SATs.)
Hiding Caves: Dwarf frogs live on the bottom and hide under your decorations -- or behind your snails. They want to hide during the day. Give them several places to lurk during the day. They come out in the evenings and patrol for food.
Foods: Forget flake foods. Dwarf frogs prefer bloodworms – frozen or dried. Hikari juices up their frozen blood worms with extra vitamins. Other good foods include blackworms, tubifex worms, chopped earthworms, and brine shrimp. HBH makes frog pellets for them Other brands are also available. All fishes love these foods and devour them rapidly. Dwarf frogs look for their food on the bottom. In a tank with no substrate, you can give them frog pellets. They're attracted to the smell of some brands. Dwarf frogs can't see well. They seem to find their food by smell or accident. They bite on bits of gravel (or each other) as readily as actual food. By the time they decide to eat something, any fishes in there have thoroughly scoured the area. We saw two of these guys trying to eat strands of Java moss fluttering in the overflow of a power filter. Dumb. Most of them that nabbed these pellets quickly spit them out at first.
Gulpers: Regular frogs catch prey on their sticky tongues. Sticky tongues aren’t much good underwater. Dwarf frogs have no tongues and gulp their food whole. They’re not fish eaters. They need foods stupider and slower than themselves -- worms work well.
Mixers: Mix them with very small community fish. Female bettas mix nicely with dwarf frogs. Or keep them by themselves. Big fish won’t eat them but will pick on them. Dwarf frogs just might survive in one of those executive aquaria.
grow larger. Males
develop black breeding pads on their “fingers” for grasping
the females. Their
forearms also turn black.
More Spawning Info from Ron: LA’s dwarf frogs never did spawn. Ron says his frogs often spawn over a period of days -- especially if several mature pairs join in the process. A spawning pair turns upside down, releases eggs at the surface, and returns to the bottom. They repeat this process several times. The floating eggs stick to any plants they bump into. Since dwarf frogs eat their own eggs and tadpoles, Ron recommends removing the egg-covered plants to another container. Dwarf frog eggs stick to nets, fingers, and cups, so remove them carefully. Thanks for the added info, Ron.
Even More Info from
Tadpoles: Baby dwarf frogs look like catfishes because two long tentacles grow out from their top lip. They eat infusoria. For faster growth, get them on to brine shrimp or microworms as soon as possible. (Other tadpoles have rasping lips for eating algae.) Dwarves are carnivores. Dwarf frog tads start turning into frogs in two months.
Last Word: Dwarf frogs
present a challenge for most people. Do not get one just because
they are cute. LA and Ron Kruger.
J Laville, Washington State, August 4, 2010
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