The Origins of the African Dwarf Frog
african dwarf frogs were first discovered in rivers, streams, puddles, and shallow ponds in diverse regions throughout Central Africa in the late nineteenth hundred. They are members of the Hymenochirus genus of aquatic frog species and are easily confused in appearance with the other frog species in their group, the African clawed frogs. While these fully aquatic amphibians both belong to the Pipidae class and may appear to look alike, they do have unlike physical and behavioral traits, which are significant for founder african gnome frog owners to identify prior to borrowing .Advertisement
Identifying Male and Female African Dwarf Frogs
There are several distinct features that make it comfortable to identify male and female African dwarf frogs. male african dwarf frogs are typically smaller in size as they mature, develop little glands behind their front legs called post-axillary subdermal glands, have a small tail, and “ buzz ” quite loud when they are agitate or trying to attract their mates. Females are typically larger in size with pear-shape bodies as they mature, develop longer tails, and aren ’ thyroxine known to buzz. When the males buzz, it is typically at night when they are most active agent. african gnome frogs are nocturnal. In the godforsaken, they hunt for food at night and rest during the day.
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Choosing the Right Aquarium for Your African Dwarf Frog
The size of your aquarium will depend on how many african dwarf frogs you would like to raise. Since they are very small frogs and only grow to a maximum of 3 inches, a 2.5-gallon aquarium is recommended for caparison one African dwarf frog. A 5-gallon aquarium is recommended for housing two, and a 10- to 20-gallon aquarium is recommended for more than two. Although african dwarf frogs are amply aquatic, they have lungs and need to rise to the airfoil of the water frequently for air. Their webbed feet make it unmanageable for them to swim in deep water. Avoid placing them in aquariums that are more than 12 inches deep. If their aquarium is excessively deep, they will struggle to reach the clear for air travel and drown .
Setting Up Your African Dwarf Frog Aquarium
As with all herps, maintaining a proper living environment for your african gnome frog is key to preventing stress, disease and a sawed-off life. The play along tips for by rights setting up and maintaining their living space are highly recommended :Advertisement
- Maintain water temperatures between 72-78 degrees Fahrenheit. The water should be similar temperatures to the African dwarf frog’s native habitat in Africa. A submersible heater and a digital thermometer are essential for maintaining these temperatures.
- Maintain PH levels between 6.5 – 7.8. These levels can be monitored regularly using PH testing kits.
- Use large aquarium gravel to cover the bottom of the tank. Gravel comes in different sizes and colors. If the grains are too small, the frogs can accidentally consume it and have a difficult time digesting it. This could lead to impaction and can be fatal. Sand is another option for substrate. It is recommended that a substrate be used in any aquarium, but some African dwarf frog keepers opt out of using substrate in fear of their frogs consuming it. It is a personal choice, but substrates make it easier to secure live and artificial plant decorations in the aquarium.
- Always secure the aquarium with a lid. African dwarf frogs spend their whole lives underwater and are not capable of surviving on dry land for more than 15-20 minutes. If they escape, their skin will dry out and they will not survive. Be mindful that African dwarf frogs require oxygen at the water’s surface, so it is best to use a screen lid. If you use a solid lid, make sure it remains open a crack so that your frog can access air to breathe.
- Avoid the use of large filters. African dwarf frogs are very sensitive to noise and they don’t have ears. They use the lateral lines on their bodies to sense vibrations. Large filters can induce stress and sickness. These frogs also prefer motionless water, so make sure the filters don’t cause strong water currents in the aquarium. An under-gravel filter is recommended. Always check with an aquarium specialist online or in store if you are uncertain. If the aquarium is small and maintained regularly, African dwarf frogs can do just fine without one.
- Provide 10-12 hours of aquarium lighting daily. African dwarf frogs are nocturnal and require a regular day and night cycle. They don’t need UVB lighting like many reptile and amphibian species do. A basic LED hood light is sufficient. Avoid placing the aquarium in a room without windows. Rooms with natural sunlight will work just fine too.
- Use filtered water in the aquarium. Raw water contains harmful chemicals such as chloramine and fluoride that can be toxic to all aquatic species. If you use tap water, be sure to treat it with anti-bacterial supplements and water conditioners prior to placing the African dwarf frog back in. Avoid the use of soap to clean the aquariums. Soap can leave residue in the aquarium and make the frogs sick.
- Perform water changes bi-weekly. It is best to change at least 10-25% of the water every 2-4 weeks. If a filter is not being used, then it is best to change the water at least once a week. Frogs shed and can be messy eaters. Avoid performing full water changes. This could cause stress and fatally shock African dwarf frogs.
- Avoid aquarium décor that is sharp and toxic. African dwarf frogs are hunted in the wild and require places where they can hide out in such as caves or logs. African dwarf frogs do well with artificial or real plants, but plants with sharp edges can tear at the frog’s skin. Some wood décor can contain harmful toxins that increase PH levels in the water. Always check with an aquatic specialist online or in store if you’re uncertain about which decorations to use.
Foods To Feed Your African Dwarf Frog
An african dwarf frog ’ s diet should contain a high gear protein and well-balanced selection of food consist of specialize aquatic frog sinking pellets, freeze dried bloodworms, freeze brine shrimp, daphnia, and live blackworms. african shadow frogs have hapless imagination and trust on their sense of smell and touch to eat. They have no tongues or teeth to help them chew, so the food that they consume should be cut up in small pieces and fed to them in humble portions .
They can be fed off a ceramic terra cotta plate inside the aquarium, or hand fed from a pair of tweezers. Since their sight is very poor, their food should be dropped in front of them so they can use their senses to find it quicker. It is best to feed them in the evening as this is when they hunt for food in their native habitats. Their stomachs are bantam, so feeding them once a day or every other day is best for their digestion. Any leftover food in the aquarium should be scooped out vitamin a soon as possible to prevent the urine from getting dirty. Overfeeding could lead to stress, disease, and excessive thriftlessness build up in the water .
When selecting food, be sure to read the labels on the containers prior to purchasing them. They should be aquatic frog specific and contain at least 40-50 percentage protein. Zoo Med, Josh ’ mho Frogs and Omega One are some of the manufacturers that offer foods specific to african shadow frogs .
Choosing the Best Tankmates for Your African Dwarf Frog
african dwarf frogs may be passive and non-aggressive frogs, but not all fresh water species feel the lapp way about them. If you are considering keeping your african dwarf frog with other fresh water species, the following 10 aquatic species make the best african dwarf frog tankmates :Advertisement
- Cardinal Tetras
- Honey Gourami
- Zebra Danios
- Cherry Barbs
- Shrimp (Cherry or Bamboo)
When house african dwarf frogs with their tankmates, be sure that the aquarium is not overcrowded and there is adequate swimming outer space for them to thrive peacefully. adequate space will help maintain a stress-free exist environment. Although these tankmates are the most compatible with african dwarf frogs, Betta pisces can become aggressive and territorial if they lack swimming outer space and feel threated by their tankmates. Always check with an aquatic specialist on-line or in store if you are unsealed. african dwarf frogs can be housed with other african dwarf frogs of both sexes.
Signs of a Healthy and Unhealthy African Dwarf Frog
It is authoritative to be able to identify the signs of a goodly and insalubrious African dwarf frog before you purchase them and while they ’ re living their lives at home plate in the aquarium .
Signs of a goodly African Dwarf Frog admit :
- actively swimming around the aquarium
- hiding often in their aquarium hideaways
- clear eyes and skin
- swimming away from capture
- interactive with their owners and tankmates
- consuming their food quickly and regularly
- spending most of their time at the bottom of the aquarium
Signs of an unhealthy african dwarf frog include :Advertisement
- loss of appetite
- cloudy/puffy eyes
- bloated stomachs
- unresponsive to their owners and tankmates
- reddish/pink patches on their legs
- white fuzzy patches or spots on their skin
- excessive floating at the top of the water
- easily captured
- weight loss
With proper care, African dwarf frogs can live between five and 10 years in enslavement. Some are known to have lived 10 to 15 years .
african gnome frogs can be seen floating around at the top of the water sporadically with their arms and legs stretched out. Rest reassure that this is good their way of being lazy and is perfectly convention demeanor. This is called, the Zen Position. If they appear to be doing this constantly and are unresponsive to feed time or any other type of interaction, this could be a sign that they are brainsick .
african gnome frogs typically shed their skin two to three times a calendar month. Before they shed their clamber, their bodies will appear milky. african dwarf frogs shed their bark for diverse reasons. The chief cause is because of their natural growing process. If you see them eating their shed afterwards, this fair means that they are consuming the leftover nutrients they lost during the shed. It is perfectly normal, so the shed can be left in the tank. They can shed for unhealthy reasons besides, which could be due to fungal infections, poor water quality or drastic changes to water parameters. Be mindful of this when you perform water system changes, feed your frog, or add specific substrates and decorations to the aquarium .
If they are shedding more than a few times a calendar month, there could be a water quality topic going on. Healthy shed should appear white and come off about wholly in one man. Unhealthy shed will appear discolored and come off in little flakes. sometimes the frogs will struggle to get the insalubrious shed off. Another sign of unhealthy shedding is if the frog ’ sulfur skin doesn ’ t return to its natural darkness shade once the shed comes off. If their bodies still appear white, then this is a bless that your frog is ill .
Purchasing African Dwarf Frogs
african shadow frogs cost anywhere between $ 1.99- $ 3.99 and can be purchased at your local pisces shop or on-line.
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African Dwarf Frogs and Salmonella
african dwarf frogs can carry diseases on their bodies such as Salmonella, which can be transmitted to humans if they are handled in an insecure manner. Wearing gloves and washing your hands before and after handling them or any amphibious and reptile is the best way to avoid catching any diseases.
Although they are very friendly and make big pets, children specially should be supervised while interacting with African dwarf frogs. For more information on Salmonella prevention, visit hypertext transfer protocol : //www.cdc.gov/healthypets/pets/reptiles/safe-handling.html .
Lana Van De Mark has been raising african dwarf frogs for the past five years and has a six-year-old male african gnome frog named Franklin .