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YIKES! So I had a crisis today - my daughter found one of my leucomelas frogs on the floor. I have NO CLUE how it got out, but yesterday I found fruit flies on the floor of the room I keep them in, so at some point I had to have left the cage door open.

My vivarium setup is a 24 x 18 x 18 Exoterra, water under with raised platform, waterfall and heavy plantings. Frogs have access to the water through a pond with the majority of the water area screened off from access. Two sides of the tank are covered with great foam coated with substrate and embedded with several plant pots and mopani wood features. I have had these guys for just over a year now and though they call and call (love it), I have never found eggs. I have a cocoa hut with petrie dish for them deep in the "jungle" of plants and check it about once a month.
Terrestrial plant Ferns and horsetails Plant Vascular plant Fern

I have four Leucomelas in the tank. I am not sure if any others got out - we searched the entire level of the house. At this point not searching the cage - rather not disturb them that much. I am sure there are still two in the cage and may have seen a third. They have plenty of places to hide where I would never find them unless I stripped out the cage. Not going there. They also love to dive in the water and hide when I feed....

In the meantime in checking for frogs, I found well developed eggs in the cocoa hut petrie dish I had in the cage. So bad scene has turned into potentially good one.

I have never raised tads. I have read up some on dendroboard, Josh's frogs, and the web. The tadpoles are active in the eggs and appear to me to be near the end of the 12-14 day developmental period. This is what I have done:

1. Removed the petrie dish to a gladware container, putting paper towel with treated water in the bottom.
2. In the petrie dish I put some of the water from the frog tank. This is nicely "tannined" water so should be great for the tads. I put just enough water in the dish to touch all the eggs.
Ferns and horsetails Botany Vascular plant Terrestrial plant Plant

Two are bad - one was apart from the others and easily removed. The other is center of the cluster of 8 good ones so not touching that.
3. Cleaned out stray dirt and feces from the petrie which was in areas away from the eggs.
4. Leaving the container in the room with my frogs as it has a nice temperature of about 76-78 degrees or more.
Stain Pest

I have tad bites to feed them and am trying to get some sera micron to mix with it. As they hatch I plan to move them to individual 16 oz containers half full of RO water, with a bit of almond leaf and some java moss, feeding every 3-4 days.

Any help anyone can give me beyond this is much appreciated. I really want them to make it, especially if I have lost one or more of my original adults.

One question - since they were in the cocoa hut should the container I have them in be kept out of the light?

Premium Member
2,743 Posts
Hi Tim,

Congrats on finding the egg clutch. You can add a bit more water to the cltuch, which will help the tadpoles hatch out and make them easier to move to their own containers (just not so much water that it covers the eggs).

The tadpoles need to breathe once they hatch and are initially quite weak, so only give them about 1/3-1/2" of water at first (this can be increased after a week or two).

Also, be very careful not to add too much food, as this can foul the water and kill the tads. I use Spirulina at first and add a TINY amount. After several weeks they are better able to eat the tadpole bites.

Good luck with them! Richard.
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