I’ve heard of this when they develop too fast in too warm of water. I’ve also seen this with snakes and turtles incubated at too high of temperatures where the whole spine is kinked. Frogs will likely have a kinked spine but may not if the bend is only in the tail as the tail is absorbed.
The only time I ever see kinks in the tails is as they are being absorbed. My experience, however, (probably similar to most people's on this board) is with dart frogs. That may be limiting the number of people chiming in on your gray tree frog tadpole question. Or it may be a rare thing that folks haven't seen before. I don't even know enough to know whether the legs (and arms?) look normal. If those were dart frog limbs, it would look unusual to me. Keep us posted, regardless!
Thanks, Mark. All of them had that weird bubble for the left elbow but the ones that have completely morphed so far ended up with normal limbs. The legs on these look ok but the one with the more severe kink does look like its likely going to have a twist to its spine. I wonder if I should give it its best life or if it will suffer alot and should be culled. This is depressing
This is never easy. I am always optimistic that things might turn out better than we think. Since the tail is eventually absorbed, I don't think you should read too much into it. Let's just hope that the little fella shakes it off
I agree with Mark that this probably will be a temporary condition.
There are many captive herps born with kinks and bends. Sometimes they end up straightening out, sometimes it is a permanent but merely visual condition, and sometimes -- rarely -- it is debilitating. Culling is a normal but very rare aspect of animal breeding. Most times, IME, the animal is simply going to be just a little funny-looking.
The causes of these conditions could be a range of things, including nutrition, inbreeding, incubation, injury. Unless a person sees a pattern of deformity among their offspring, I wouldn't worry too much.
Thanks, that's encouraging. I'm just worried about them being in pain. It would be amazing if they both ended up straightening out. I'm pretty sure the cause was that they got too hot. I'll keep and take care of these bendy tailed ones and hope for the best. I'm not planning to breed them, necessarily. I'll let you know how it goes.
Unfortunately the poor baby with the badly kinked tail seems to have a lame right leg. It seems like it just hangs there lifeless and the foot is always curled. I'm going to wait another day to see if there's any improvement. Any recommendations on most humane way to cull? I'd rather not wait until it's a froglet if I must do that. Photo from this morning: http://imgur.com/gallery/5UOPPGm
That does look like a deformity. I think you are starting to get into quality of life issues here, especially if the front legs are also deformed. Are these tads that you pulled from a local stream/pond? If so, you might be right about heat being a problem. Ordinarily in situations like this, we would probably ask you a bunch of questions about the husbandry of the parents, but that is a non-issue if you pulled these out of a local stream or pond. Temp is something to look at and maybe what you are feeding the little guys, but that is much less likely. If this is happening to more than one tad, though, it is likely environmental somehow.
Here is an article by Ed that I think could be relevant for you. Sorry you are having to deal with this.
They were pulled from a local kiddie pool and it was very hot outside. They get good tadpole food from xenopus. The front limbs aren't out yet but I think it's just a day or two from that happening. If this doesn't look better by tomorrow I'll do the thing. It's hard to be sure but it looks like the leg is smaller in addition to being twisted all wrong. Thank you for your input. The other one seems like it's going to be mostly ok.
Just as an informational, veterinary considerations for limb loss of reptiles and amphibians, whether functional loss, amputation injury, or a therapeutic amputation - regard rear limb loss as the lesser catastrophic.
If there is front limb involvement euthanasia is the compassionate decision for most guys other than crocs or muscular varanids.
The lack of anterior control and maintaining proprioception is highly stressful - even if an animal can be coddled along with assisted feeding.
I'm going to give the little one more time to possibly straighten out and see how the front limbs come in. The other is going to be out of the water in the next 24 hours I think. Thank you all <3
P.S. I haven't gotten a good look at the tiny right arm that came in today. I am not sure I got a real good look at the left one that was out yesterday. They're simply too tiny to see well. From what I can see looks ok. Wish us luck
Limbs all look good on the first one, who I thought I'd find as a froglet this morning. Seems it wanted to wait for the full moon tonight. Photos of that one from last night: http://imgur.com/gallery/0u63v2Q
He was looking a little more full bodied on one side than the other in the torso yesterday but appears to be evening out today. The bend in what's left of the tail looks a little more severe today so praying that doesn't cause any issues. Latest photos from a few minutes ago:
The other one is still pretty pitiful but it is possible its hips are straightening out. Doesn't look to be getting worse in any case. Looks like the front limbs should be coming in in the next couple of days. I'm really hoping it'll be ok enough and I'll be able to keep it. If not, I've got some high quality clove oil to anesthetize and a 20% benzocaine paste to euthanize. Here are the latest photos of that baby: http://imgur.com/gallery/uMfB723
BTW I've named the first one Bubbles because it floated a lot compared to the other tadpoles.
Hi Mark, Kmc, Socratic Monologue and any one else who's interested, could I please get you to go look at bent tail number two? That's the one with the more severe twist. I'm mostly concerned about that back right hip which is clearly rotated wrong. It looks like it's rotated forward so the knee points down more than it should making it hard for the lower leg to fold under as it should. All limbs are out today and the front limbs look good. I've posted three short videos and a photo, all from today, here: http://imgur.com/gallery/4dOHj1w
It's time to make difficult decisions. I don't care if the frog looks funny but I don't want it suffering from bad stress, possible dislocations or severe disability.