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Choosing a Frog Species

When you are ready to enter the world of amphibians, you’ll likely be looking at frogs, but how will you go about choosing the right frog species? You can find a good book on frogs for a great price and know that the information inside is there to help you. After you’ve gotten a frog or two, then you’ll always have it to refer back to when you have questions. Remember that frogs are not usually hip on being held and do like to be left alone.

If you are new to frogs, you’ll want to start out with the easiest species you can. Experts agree that is the African Dwarf Frog. These frogs are super-easy to feed because they don’t eat insects so you won’t have to handle any crickets! They live their entire lives in water and can eat any good quality sinking fish food. At maturity, African Dwarfs only reach about an inch and a half in length. You will have to make sure you have a good lid on your aquarium. You will know if you are looking at a Dwarf if he looks skinny through the middle (not always the best indicator) and does not have any claws on his front feet, but does have webbed front feet. His eyes will also be more flat than other frogs. They can be delicate for the first few weeks they are with you, just as fish would be, so try to buy a frog that was active at the store and is not really tiny.

So, say you want an amphibian that does more than hang out in the water but is still easy to have. Oriental Fire Bellied Toads are a great choice. They are called “terrestrial” toads because they don’t live in water, but they still need a fair amount of humidity. Fire Bellies are great to watch because they are active; they are brightly colored and eat crickets. The best way to feed them is to make sure the crickets have been fortified with a frog supplement before dropping them in with your frog, and then watch him go. Oriental Fire Bellied Toads do not need to hibernate and also don’t need too many extras for temperature and humidity. If you are comfortable in your house’s climate, your Fire Belly probably is too.

Another beginner frog is the African Clawed Frog and his pasty brother the Albino African Clawed Frog. These are also water frogs with similar care needs as the African Dwarf Frog, so they are easy to deal with too. The biggest difference between them is size. Clawed Frogs can get very large and will eat fish if they are housed together. Some states and cities have put bans on African Claws because they are such voracious eaters and if they do get into the water system can become a real problem.

As frog species get larger, the frogs tend to become less active. Feeding time is often as exciting as things get in their enclosures. Larger frogs also need larger food. There are a few types of frogs who actually eat baby mice, but most suffice with fortified insects. Other frogs for beginners include the White’s Tree Frog, the American Green Tree Frog and the PacMan Frog (which gets very big).

Many frogs will need to hibernate seasonally for their health and well-being. Those are frogs that will require more care than most beginners are ready to take on. Starting out knowing a bit about frogs will help you when choosing a frog species.

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