The most common frogs for the aquarium are clawed frogs. But beginners need to know how to properly care for these animals. Unfortunately, many buy them impulsively, and this often ends in the death of a frog or aquarium fish.
This type of frog native to southern Africa can reach a length of up to 12 cm. This amphibian has a small head. The muzzle is rounded, with small eyes at the top. The front legs are movable, turned inward. The hind feet are well developed, with webbed toes and strong claws.
This frog owes its name to three pairs of strong claws resembling spurs. They serve to protect and cut food. An animal that has fallen into the paws of a predator pulls its powerful hind legs up, to the very head, and sharply unbends them. The blow is strong enough, and sharp claws can seriously injure.
Along the body of the clawed frog has small depressions in which short hairs grow. Thanks to these hairs, the animal is able to feel even slight vibrations in the water. The purpose of these hairs is that the frog can quickly understand which side the other animal is on - prey orpredator.
In nature, the amphibian has a brown color with dark spots on the sides. In artificial breeding, the albino white frog, which has red eyes and a pink body color, is more common.
Why is the clawed frog so popular? Keeping these animals is not difficult. They are undemanding to the volume of the aquarium. A five-liter one is enough to keep one pair, but is it really possible to observe the habits of a fairly large animal in such a small space? Therefore, it is better to choose a container with a volume of at least 20 liters. Some types of clawed frogs can be quite large and reach 15 cm in length, which should also be taken into account.
Please note that the white frog is an exclusively aquatic species. And this means that the animal can not do without water for a long time. You can’t hold such a pet in your arms and you won’t let it out for a walk, but the clawed frog is great for keeping in an aquarium.
These amphibians are not thermophilic and do not need additional heating. The frog will feel comfortable at room temperature. Does not tolerate chlorinated water well.
You can't just put an animal in an aquarium, even if it's an undemanding clawed frog. The maintenance of these animals is associated with some difficulties. Frogs are very fond of digging in the ground, so it is better to choose coarse soil. Plants should be strong, with dense leaves and a strong root system. Many hobbyists plant plantsin small ceramic pots. That protects them from destruction. Fragile plants with weak roots will be damaged, dug up and die quickly.
Clawed frog heavily pollutes water and releases a lot of organic matter. Therefore, in the aquarium you need to install a filter. In nature, these animals live in stagnant water, so filtration should not create a strong current.
The white frog, like the brown one, breathes air, so aeration in the aquarium is not needed. Clawed frogs are quite agile, so the aquarium must be covered with a coverslip to avoid escaping. In order for fresh air to enter in sufficient quantities, it is necessary to leave a small gap.
Clawed frogs prefer live food. It can be earthworms, mealworms, bloodworms, tadpoles, crickets or small fish. With the help of tweezers, the frog can be fed with small pieces of fish, meat, shrimp, liver.
Clawed frogs are voracious and prone to obesity, so they should not be overfed. Fatty foods should also be avoided - pork, fatty beef, tubifex. A he althy frog should remain lean, flat.
These amphibians have a good sense of smell, they perfectly capture the smells and vibrations of the water. Frogs in an aquarium find food very quickly and greedily eat it, helping themselves with their front paws. Feed young frogs every 2 days, adults - 2 times a week.
The clawed frog is distinguished by arrogant, active and shameless behavior. These animals devour all living things,what can fit in the mouth, they are constantly digging up and tearing aquarium plants, raising dregs, moving stones, driftwood, decorations, constantly digging the soil.
They are interesting to watch, they don't hide. Their muzzles are incredibly expressive, and they like to take original poses, hang picturesquely in the water column. Animals are impressionable, but quickly get used to the owner and recognize him.
So, having learned about the peculiarities of the behavior of this frog, you yourself can already conclude that it is extremely undesirable to populate it in a common aquarium. It is not only dangerous for small fish, which it will eat very quickly because of its voracity, but it will also constantly make a mess in the aquarium, destroy plants, move decorations, dig up the soil and muddy the water. In addition, this frog prefers to live in a swamp, in stagnant water, which fish will not like, and an amphibian will not like fresh water with a strong current.
Some fanciers believe that frogs are optimally kept together with labyrinth fish - lalius and gourami. These fish also breathe air and do not like strong currents. The frog's neighbors must be non-aggressive and large enough so that the amphibian cannot swallow them. When buying a two-centimeter baby, keep in mind that the animal will grow.
When buying a small frog, the gender cannot be determined. Puberty in frogs occurs at 10 months. In adults, distinguishing a female from a male is quite simple. The female is larger than the male andhas 3 folds covering the cloaca. They are a bit like a ponytail. The male (even the frog, whose color is not found in nature - albino) has black palms and stripes on the legs. The behavior of heterosexual amphibians also has differences. Adult males sing at night. Think carefully about whether you need such noisy animals as clawed frogs.
It is not recommended to allow frogs under 15 months old to mate. In nature, the breeding season is in autumn, but in captivity, mating can occur at any time of the year after appropriate preparation.
The female and the male are separated into different containers and the temperature is lowered to 18 degrees, after a while they are placed together and the temperature is raised to 20 °C. During mating, a smaller male crawls onto the back of the female and wraps his paws tightly around her. The female lays several eggs on the plants or glass of the aquarium every time the male presses his head on her back. Mating lasts about 6 hours, all this time the male uses only skin breathing, and the female periodically emerges for a breath of atmospheric air.
Care for offspring
The optimum temperature for the development of eggs and larvae is 25 °C. Until the moment when the tadpoles begin to breathe air, aeration will be required. You can start feeding the larvae on the fifth day. Dry nettles can be used as feed. It is insisted in boiling water for 2 hours, then filtered through cheesecloth and the resulting water is poured into an aquarium withtadpoles. The liquid in the container should take on a greenish tint.