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Discussion Starter #1
Ive been wondering about tadpole cannibalism. I know that some tadpoles will attack and kill/eat their brethren. If this process would be allowed to take its "natural" course and they were left to their own until a single one remained Would that dominant tadpole be the strongest tad to mature?

I know naturally that they would be transported to separate locations. So how would this work in captivity?
 

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I know naturally that they would be transported to separate locations. So how would this work in captivity?
That's pretty much the answer. They would be deposited in different locations so cannibalism wouldn't occur. Sometimes if there aren't enough deposition sites tads will be put together, in which case you could leave them and see what happens. A lot of times though, it doesn't just come down to survival of the fittest.

This also doesn't mean everyone should throw 5 tads in a cup so they can duke it out for survival.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks but what I really want to know is, if left in a group, would the dominant tad be the BEST breeding stock? The strongest would kill everything else. Right?
I know it sounds a bit harsh.
Since we hand raise all out tads theres no way to know which tadpoles are naturally stronger.
 

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Thanks but what I really want to know is, if left in a group, would the dominant tad be the BEST breeding stock? The strongest would kill everything else. Right?
I know it sounds a bit harsh.
Since we hand raise all out tads theres no way to know which tadpoles are naturally stronger.
No, you are simply selecting for the most aggressive tadpole through artificial selection. Dendrobatid tadpoles that are cannibalistic in the wild are cannibalistic due to the shortage of animal protien in thier enviroment. In this case you are manufacturing an artificial shortage and allowing the tadpoles to eat each other.

Ed
 

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Maybe its the species or even the food supply, but when I have housed tads together for any reason, I rarely see cannibalism. Of course, what ed said about aggressiveness is true in many species. And behavior is partially genetic in all species. Hence the domestication process.
 

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Once through 10 tads together for one night, they all suffered as a result; ended up with 10 tads with bit marks on their tales. You may end up with a victor that is damaged but did survive the ordeal. This type of selection process is not worth hurting frogs for in my opinion.
Brian
 

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I have raised multiple tinc froglets together in very small areas of water, but they have a large food supply. All the tads mrophed out as nice sized froglets.
 

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Maybe its the species or even the food supply, but when I have housed tads together for any reason, I rarely see cannibalism. Of course, what ed said about aggressiveness is true in many species. And behavior is partially genetic in all species. Hence the domestication process.

I did some trials using ventrimaculatus (well what was ventrimaculatus at that time) which are well known to have highly cannibalistic tadpoles. By introducing a diet of animal protien (using live black worms), I did not get any cannibalism even when I housed as many as 5 tadpoles in a large yogurt cup half filled with water.

Ed
 
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Discussion Starter #9
right , ok that makes sense. The tadpole hunger drives their cannibalistic tendencies. If they were eating a proper diet then they wont always be aggressive. And if they are aggressive, then its due to lack of proper nutrition.
I thought that superior genetics drove the aggression.
Thanks All!!
 

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I love these threads....learn something new every day.

Thanks guys!

-Troy
 

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In our experience, well fed tadpoles generally don't eat each other. That goes for many species - like leucs, auratus, tincs, galacts, bassleri, anthonyii, femoralis, and all the phyllobates. Leucs seem to be some of the most aggressive when defending territories, but feed them well and we see very few issues.
 
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