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Old 01-29-2018, 04:11 AM
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Default Do frogs eat slugs?

I already idd the pests (little whitish slugs), but I have a question that this group seems best able to answer. I religiously removed all the big slugs (5-6mm?) for a few weeks but was sure I wasnt getting all the teeny tiny ones. Now they seem to be gone. I assume the frogs (R. Variabilis) helped me out by eating those too small for me to find. But Im not sure that frogs even eat slugs, so figured I would ask the experts. (PS lesson learned on not using bleach, but in good news the little plant that is the culprit (other than me, of course) is doing awesome.)

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Old 01-29-2018, 01:11 PM
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Default Re: Do frogs eat slugs?

While I think frogs are sizable enough to eat a slug, my Dendrobates auratus will take adult Calliphora vomitoria without problem, I think the issue here is that slugs can produce toxic defenses to avoid predation. I know that a lot of mammals avoid them regardless of size, and I've heard of some animals becoming ill after ingesting them.
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Old 01-29-2018, 04:24 PM
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Default Re: Do frogs eat slugs?


I'd think slugs tend to be so slow in their movements that they aren't as likely to trigger a feed/strike response in frogs that see them.

Slugs also defend themselves with a thicker slime they exude when distressed - this makes it harder for smaller animals that can't swallow the slug outright to successfully eat them. My small box turtle could eat an earthworm of much larger diameter than a slug because the thicker slime made it harder to bite the slug into swallowable chunks.

Animals that can swallow the slug in one go, however, seem to like them well enough: My chickens, once they learn to recognize them, devour every slug they see.

I think frogs could eat smaller slugs - they are just less likely to focus on them as a food source if enough faster-moving, attention-grabbing arthropods are crawling around. Slugs also favor nocturnal activity, meaning less time for them to catch the eye of a hungry frog as well.
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