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  • 7 Post By Tijl
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Old 10-25-2019, 06:24 AM
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Default Tadpoles just keep dying

My work keeps a vivarium with a pair of Dendrobates tinctorius and a pair of Phyllobates bicolor. (yes, they are housed together). These frogs have been together in this vivarium since 2013 and all seem to be doing well. Over the years they have produced a steady stream of eggs and tadpoles. The tadpoles are removed from the vivarium and reared in cups, but they always die. One after the other, dozens and dozens, year after year Once two of the tadpoles managed to make it to the froglet stage before they perished but usually the tadpoles die right around the time they develop their legs, just before or after. Recently some of my coworkers have been changing the protocol in how the tadpoles are reared hoping to finally raise them all the way through, but they are still dying.

The water in the cups has undergone reverse osmosis and they are being fed some tadpole pellets from Josh's Frogs. So far my coworkers have tried adding an almond leaf and some moss and not doing water changes and putting the cups under lights (I think last round the light overheated the water in the cups). Seeing as we work with animals as part of our business I feel especially awful that we just keep killing off these tadpoles. It seems like after 6 years someone at my work would have figured this out! I'm really looking forward to the people on here being able to help. This is my very first post.
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Old 10-25-2019, 08:24 AM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

A few comments or things I think you are doing wrong ;


For the tadpoles :

-Just use tapwater and don't change the water the whole cycle, refill the water only if needed.

-Don't put it under lightbulbs or annything or other heat sources, room temperature is perfect for tadpoles.

-Personaly I have more succes in darker areas for my tadpoles, seems like they grow a litlle bigger and prefer less light.

-Try Hikari koi staples pallets, I get almost all my species big on these!

- I use oakleaves and spagnum moss in the tadpolescups.


Other possible/probable problem is that your parents are not healthy and or lack vitamines and more.

-Use the correct supplementation on daily and monthly/2weekly base. I suggest : Repashy : Calcium+ every feed, VitA+ once a month, SuperPig once a month.

-Feed with as many different bugs you can get.



Other :

- Do not mix species...
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Old 10-25-2019, 11:45 AM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

Any and all additional comments and advice are most welcome!

Last edited by IndigoNight; 10-25-2019 at 11:59 AM.
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Old 10-25-2019, 12:18 PM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

Great advice from Tijl, as always.

A few more questions, since there's likely a smoking gun here that can be found if you give as much info as possible:

When they die, what do they look like? What is the water quality at the time of death? Did the froglets that died have any different look to them (e.g. were their legs normal, did they move normally)? Did those froglets ever eat on land?

Please say more about the feeding and supplementation routine of the adults (foods fed, frequency, supplementation product and frequency).

Quote:
Originally Posted by IndigoNight View Post
The water in the cups has undergone reverse osmosis and they are being fed some tadpole pellets from Josh's Frogs.
What is the water volume in the cups and how much/often are they fed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by IndigoNight View Post
I think last round the light overheated the water in the cups
What was the temp in the cups with and without the light? A temp gun is best to determine this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IndigoNight View Post
my coworkers
How many people are working on this project? It may be that there are simply too many cooks in the kitchen, as they say.

Not likely relevant, but I'm curious: what's the size of the viv, and how many of each species are in it?
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Old 10-25-2019, 12:23 PM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

leave a decent sized slice of indian almond leaf in the tadpole cup for them to hide under.

Add a small aquarium stone maybe the size of a nickel. The stone will accumulate 'biofilm' for the tadpole to rasp - 'the peanut butter on the cracker'

def change to degassed tap water if your 'city' water is up to snuff otherwise use grocery store spring water.

only partial water changes - suck up detritus / do the water change with a .99 cent turkey baster.
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Old 10-25-2019, 01:12 PM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

Anytime there is this type of failure of offspring to thrive, I always look at the health and husbandry of the parents. What are you feeding to the parents and how are you supplementing? Do you have pictures of the adults? If so, you can host them on Imgur and post a link. Attaching pics on this board directly is dismal and won't have the detail needed to see them properly. I would also consider splitting the pair off into a different enclosure from the other frogs. There is no reason to have the added complexity and potential stress of having multiple species in the same tank, especially when you are trying to breed them. I would say the same thing, though, if you had more than just the pair of the same species in the tank.

Sorry you are having difficulties.

Mark
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Last edited by Encyclia; 10-25-2019 at 01:16 PM.
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Old 10-26-2019, 01:28 AM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

Quote:
Originally Posted by Encyclia View Post
Anytime there is this type of failure of offspring to thrive, I always look at the health and husbandry of the parents. What are you feeding to the parents and how are you supplementing? Do you have pictures of the adults? If so, you can host them on Imgur and post a link. Attaching pics on this board directly is dismal and won't have the detail needed to see them properly. I would also consider splitting the pair off into a different enclosure from the other frogs. There is no reason to have the added complexity and potential stress of having multiple species in the same tank, especially when you are trying to breed them. I would say the same thing, though, if you had more than just the pair of the same species in the tank.

Sorry you are having difficulties.

Mark
I would consider looking towards the adults as well. Both of those species produce large clutches and Vitamin A deficiency could be playing a part in the survival of the tadpoles.

Tiji suggestion on tadpole care are good. The simpler the better to start imo. I use straight tapwater with some oak leaves. No water changes. If you can't get at least some of the tadpoles to morph like this then something else must be going on.
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Old 10-26-2019, 11:26 AM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

Thank you so much everyone! I made a detailed list of questions and sent it to my boss and coworkers and as soon as I receive a response I will post back here. I also have some pictures of the adults on my work computer that I will try to post.
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Old 11-10-2019, 11:37 PM
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Default Re: Tadpoles just keep dying

i would definitely start with supplementing the adults food, vary their diet for sure, keep the tads out of direct light, keep consistent temps, i always use distilled water in 12 oz deli cups with some leaf in there, i use aquatic newt and tadpole food then transfer to a walk out container when the front legs pop, id say if it keeps being a problem, check the frogs or tads for some sort of disease or parasite

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