Warning! Frogs and the like are a protected species in many countries, taking them from the wild can be seen as a criminal act. Also, please be very aware that these are living animals, they are not toys, they are not things to throw away when you get bored with them. Once you take them (from the wild), you will be responsible for their wellbeing until you release them back. So think carefully if you are really willing to commit.



At the end of March my friend and I were talking about frogs and toads. Recently I had helped a few cross the road and he had a pond in his backyard where frogs lay their eggs. He was telling me how most, if not all of the tadpoles get eaten by the carps. As I had an empty aquarium, I thought it might be nice to have a bit of frogspawn and take care of the tadpoles so the fish would not eat them.

Tadpoles grow like crazy the first week you have them, especially indoors. Between day 10 and 20 nothing really special seems to happen and then suddenly they have little back legs! At this time you might want to change the water completely, in my case the tank started smelling really bad no matter how much water I changed. Changing the water completely isn't recommended as it puts a lot of stress on the animals but it's also not healthy to have them swim in their own waste. After 30 days it was time to set them free! They will start to develop front legs really quickly and their dietary needs change to that of a real frog. You won't be able to feed them on fish pellets and keeping them beyond this point might mean they will starve. Set them free in shallow water, preferably in the same place they originally came from.

Tips for keeping tadpoles:

  • Aquarium: They can live in pretty much any container that can hold water, a glass aquarium is preferred but a plastic one or a large fish bowl will do. A rule for keeping any water-creature is *the bigger the better*, it's better for the animal and it makes it easier to keep clean.
  • Plants: Place some plants in your aquarium. Water-weeds like "Elodea" and "Cabomba aquatica" provide food, oxygen and decoration. PLEASE DO NOT release these plants into the wild as they are considered pests and can negatively influence the environment.
  • Food: You will need to provide additional food for your tadpoles for them to survive and thrive. Fish pellets that sink are preferred and they should contain "Spirulina".
  • Air: Don't worry about the tadpoles gasping for air at the surface, this is normal. After the first few days they lose their gills and they will need to gulp air regularly to breath.
  • Cleaning: Renew your tanks water daily as it will get dirty really fast. DO NOT renew all the water at once, renew a maximum of 1/3 a day. Also replace with water of the same temperature, a sudden large fluctuation in temperature can kill water creatures.
  • Release: At some point you should return the tadpoles back into the wild. Best time to do this is after they have formed back legs (back legs form first) or once they start forming their front legs. Make sure your young frogs or toads don't jump out of the aquarium.

06-April-2015 (1 day) 07-April-2015 (2 days)
Frogspawn 1 day Frogspawn 2 days
08-April-2015 (3 days) 12-April-2015 (6 days)
Frogspawn 3 days Frogspawn 6 days
15-April-2015 (9 days) 18-April-2015 (12 days)
Frogspawn 9 days Frogspawn 12 days
21-April-2015 (15 days) 24-April-2015 (18 days)
Frogspawn 15 days Frogspawn 18 days
30-April-2015 (24 days) 03-May-2015 (27 days - They can start jumping out!)
Frogspawn 24 days Frogspawn 27 days
07-May-2015 (31 days) 08-May-2015 - Jiraiya says; Time to set them free! :)
Frogspawn 31 days Naruto Frogsuit Gif
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