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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Are there any documented instances of isopods attacking frogs? Josh's frogs mentions it for everything above the size of "dwarf". I'd like to get some larger isopods for my vivs (e.g. powder orange), but the warning gives me pause.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Cool, I take the lack of response to mean that no one on the forum has actually seen this take place, which is a good sign. However, I am really curious about what conditions would produce this phenomenon. I assume that you simply have absolutely starving isopods, but since they will eat many different types of decaying organic material, the viv would have to be particularly bare.
 

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Mantella baroni, Dendrobates auratus, Dendrobates azureus, Afrixalus dorsalis, Theloderma corticale
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I've never seen isopods attack a frog, however I have observed (and photographed) orange isopods catching and eating both pea aphids and firebrats.

I'll see if I can find the photograph of an isopod killing and eating a firebrat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I was considering putting Isopods in my exhibits, but decided just to stick with Springtails. Safer and the frogs, Morning Geckos can eat them as snacks.

Some people swear by them, i rather play it safer. Just my opinion.
That being said, I know people who have them with no problem.
I feel totally safe keeping dwarf isopods in the tank. They're all small enough to be consumed, and I haven't encountered any warnings about them. They may be worth considering for your exhibits.
 

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Mantella baroni, Dendrobates auratus, Dendrobates azureus, Afrixalus dorsalis, Theloderma corticale
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Wow, that's very interesting. I'd like to see that.
Relocated the picture on my external hard drive:


Killed the firebrat by grabbing it and biting it's head until it stopped moving. The red you see comes out of the firebrat, I breed them on food that's loaded with carotenoids so they are massively gutloaded.
 

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I have used P scabers basically since I have started the hobby -- so for about 8 years. During this time I have NEVER seen an isopod attack one of my frogs.

This seems to be a common rumor that is being perpetuated on the internet by people who have absolutely zero experience with dart frogs. I've even seen people proclaim that the larger isopod species are basically carnivorous and predatory. I think what they say is that they are "protein hungry"... :rolleyes:

If you think about it logically, the idea that isopods attack frogs is a bit silly because:
1. Frogs are slippery.
If you have ever tried to catch an escaped frog, you know how hard they are to get your hands on. Now imagine you're an isopod: 10,000X smaller, basically blind, no hands, and have the brain the size of a grain of sand.

2.Except thumbnail species, most frogs are bigger than isopods.
So that's basically like you trying to win a fight with an adult cow, using only your bare hands.

3. Frogs can jump and climb to places isopods can't/won't.
Like, I RARELY see isopods out where the frogs are. And if an isopod were to touch a frog in a way they didn't like, the frogs can easily just hop away (similar to when a fruit fly crawls on them and they don't like it).​

I believe the idea that isopods attack frogs comes from observing the feeding response of large isopod cultures that have dozens/hundreds of individuals. If there's no constant food supply, and you add a few fish flakes (or some other meaty food item), you'll quickly see the hungrier individuals rush to grab the food, which can be misconstrued as them seeking out meat. But like, I don't know what else one should expect in this scenario; no one keeps that population density of isopods in their frog tanks...

Like, the only real scenario that I could see isopods "attacking" frogs would be if you had very small frogs/froglets in a tiny growout container (like shoebox or smaller), with several large isopods (like scaber). Like, in this scenario, the frogs are basically trapped with no where to run or hide from the isopods, and the isopods don't really have any real food. Here I can see the isopods touching the frogs to the point that they get stressed and die (similar to what can happen if you feed too many FFs and they are constantly crawling on your frogs). And then once the frog is dying/dead, the isopods finally find something to eat. So yeah.... don't do this lol
 

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If you think about it logically, the idea that isopods attack frogs is a bit silly because:
1. Frogs are slippery.
If you have ever tried to catch an escaped frog, you know how hard they are to get your hands on. Now imagine you're an isopod: 10,000X smaller, basically blind, no hands, and have the brain the size of a grain of sand.

2.Except thumbnail species, most frogs are bigger than isopods.
So that's basically like you trying to win a fight with an adult cow, using only your bare hands.

3. Frogs can jump and climb to places isopods can't/won't.
Like, I RARELY see isopods out where the frogs are. And if an isopod were to touch a frog in a way they didn't like, the frogs can easily just hop away (similar to when a fruit fly crawls on them and they don't like it).​
By this logic, crickets would also never succesfully attack frogs and they have been clearly demonstrated to do so. I see no reason why isopods couldn't use the same strategy (nibble at night when the frogs sleep). Regardless, I have also never seen isopods attack or go after a frog, even the ones that I've seen eating firebrats and aphids.
 

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By this logic, crickets would also never succesfully attack frogs and they have been clearly demonstrated to do so. I see no reason why isopods couldn't use the same strategy (nibble at night when the frogs sleep).
This is an inaccurate comparison. Crickets have very strong serrated mandibles that can quickly break through even human skin. Crickets are much faster, and can climb where isopods will not. Also most crickets will grow larger than most isopods.
 

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This is an inaccurate comparison. Crickets have very strong serrated mandibles that can quickly break through even human skin. Crickets are much faster, and can climb where isopods will not. Also most crickets will grow larger than most isopods.
If you check out the photograph I posted before, this is at the top of the viv. ;) I've found this particular species of isopod throughout any viv I've thrown them in except on glass.

I agree that the mandibles of crickets are definitely stronger and more suited to tear into flesh of other animals, however don't underestimate the mandibles of isopods. They also have an edged or serrated tip which they use for chewing chunks of vegetables or leaves. I've got a link to a paper which has electron microscope photographs of isopod mandibles, but unfortunately I can't share this publicly because of copyright issues. However if you want I send them to you in a pm.

Even so, as I said before, I still believe isopods do not pose a risk to a healthy frog.
 

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Are there any documented instances of isopods attacking frogs? Josh's frogs mentions it for everything above the size of "dwarf". I'd like to get some larger isopods for my vivs (e.g. powder orange), but the warning gives me pause.
I've never had any issues like this. Not with any of my pacmans at least. I had a clutch of Mantids and one of the Ghost Mantis failed to shed right and got stuck in his skin. Isopods and springtails I guess sensed the struggle and tried to eat the Mantis alive. The Mantis ended up dying after the shed so I'm assuming the Isos and Springtails just knew it was the end or something. But again. This wasn't told to scare you further. This has never happened with any of my frogs. Even when a pacman was sick or dead.
 

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Crickets have both powerful mandibles and a opportunistic taste for meat, more so with Acheta domesticus and less so with Gryllodes sigillatus from what I've observed feeding my crickets lunch meat. I doubt isopods would cause damage to frogs but I think I have heard people warn that larger "ornamental" isopods like to chew on frog eggs, so that might be a thing.
 
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