Not a bit cold or ugly: Frogs and Toads

Even the fattest toads are lured out by frost-free nights, mild temperature and rainy weather in spring. Late in the evening, these amphibians make their way home from their winter dwellings to spawn. Frogs and toads don’t just hop along forest paths or even streets – they are increasingly found indoors in terrariums. The animal experts from Maxi Zoo profile these primeval creatures.

frogs and toads

About amphibians

Amphibians are the oldest tetrapods on earth. They are believed to descend from bony fish or osteichthyes who lived 400 million years ago. Over the course of time, these evolved into the first amphibians, which were able to move on land using legs. Today frogs, toads and other animals in this class still need water to survive. They are all amphibians, which essentially means “double life”.

But what is the difference between a frog and a toad?

They both belong to the order Anura and the amphibian class, which lay their eggs in the water. Unlike toads, frogs have long back legs, which allow them to jump long distances. Their nose is more pointed than toads, which are overall more of a short, stocky shape. While frogs have a relatively smooth, moist skin, toads’ bodies are covered in warts. Toad spawn forms thin strings that are several metres long and can contain several thousand eggs. Frogs lay their spawn in a clumped mass.

So many to choose from!

Frogs and toads are found almost everywhere in the world and are real survivors, equipped with all kinds of “extras” from camouflage colours to bold coloured markings and poison-secreting glands. This diversity is fascinating, not least for terrarium owners. The green and black poison dart frog, the strawberry poison dart frog and the dyeing dart frog are particularly popular. Tree frogs and African clawed frogs are easy to care for and are recommended for beginners. The Berber toad, American green tree frog, African common toad and Texas toad also make good pets.

What you’ll need

To keep amphibians as pets, you need a sufficiently large terrarium (e.g., 50 x 50 x 50 for a pair of small frogs) set up to meet the needs of its inhabitants. Some animals live in trees, others on the ground. Some live completely in the water and require an aquarium. Many species originate from the tropics and like it correspondingly warm and damp. Toads can live to over 20 years in terrariums! Frogs generally do not live as long and have a life expectancy of approximately ten years.

Don’t forget

Frog fans should avoid collecting tadpoles from the wild, as certain species such as the tree frog, common frog and common toad are protected.
Call into your local store today to discuss your reptile’s personal needs with our Maxi Zoo Pet Experts.