Tomato Frog – Detailed Article

The Madagascar Tomato Frog (Dyscophus antongilii) is a species of frog that belongs to the Microhylidae family.

What is Tomato Frog, what kind of animal is it? Interesting facts about the features, lifestyle, of Tomato Frog, a species belonging to Madagascar.

  • Living Area: At least 450x450x300mm glass terrarium
  • Heating: 75 ° F (20-25 ° C) ambient air temperature
  • Nutrition: Carnivore nutrition (Insect and meat)
  • Decoration: Moist substrate

Tomato Frog Size

Adult males can reach 2.5 centimeters, while females can grow up to 4 inches from the nostril into the air. If they grow quickly and eat well, they can reach adults within a year. A female is at least two times to mature.

Life of tomato frog

Although domestic tomato frogs can live up to 10 years, they have an average life span of six years.

Appearance

10,5 cm. length and 230 gr. females that can reach weight are larger than males (6.5 cm. and 40 gr.). The Tomato Frog takes its name from its bright orange-red coloration. Females, along with their matte bottom surfaces, have a brighter red or orange color than males. Some individuals also have black spots on the throat.

The bright colors of the Tomato Frog are thought to function as a warning that this frog is poisonous to potential predators; A white substance is produced from the skin of the frog (such as colubrid snakes), which has the property of glue to deter predators, which can cause an allergic reaction in humans.

Tomato frogs belong to the genus Dyscophus. There are three types of frogs under this breed. These frogs are native to Madagascar. D. antongilii, D. insularis, D. guineti

Tomato frogs are strong reddish-orange to yellowish-red color, bellies are creamy-yellow. In some species, there may be dark spots on the throat of these frogs. Unlike male tomato frogs, females are bright red. This bright color serves a useful purpose. Because “Hey! it is poisonous. ”It keeps the predators away. However, if the predator catches the frog, the tomato frog has a second defense system. It provides a dense adhesive that clogs the predator’s eyes. Thus, it allows the predatory frog to go.

The length of the female tomato frog can be up to 10 centimeters, males can be 5 to 7.6 centimeters long.

Habitat and Distribution

This frog, native to Madagascar, is seen in the northeast of the island, near the Gulf of Antongil and south to Andevoranto. However, its exact distribution is uncertain since it is similar to the close relative Dyscophus guinet.

Madagascar Tomato Frog breeds in shallow ponds, marshes and slow-flowing wetlands. It is found in places up to about 200 meters above sea level.

Natural habitats; subtropical or tropical humid lowland forests, rivers, reeds, freshwater marshes, freshwater marshes that form and dry from time to time, arable lands, fields, gardens, residential areas, old forests with heavy degradation, ponds, canals and ditches.

Life Cycle and Ecology

It reproduces in February and March following heavy rainy period; In dark nights, the call sounds made by the male to attract the female around small puddles can be heard. After merger, the female will lay between 1,000 and 15,000 eggs on the water surface.

Approximately 36 hours later, tadpoles emerge from these black and white eggs; they are about six millimeters long and feed by filtering water. Tadpocks become yellow young individuals and metamorphose, which takes place approximately 45 days after the eggs are laid.

Adult tomato frogs lurk for potential prey and feed on small invertebrates, such as insects, mosquitoes and flies. When threatened, they can inflate themselves to have a larger appearance.

Related Threats and Protection

The Madagascar Tomato Frog is included in the ‘Almost Threatened’ category in the IUCN Red List and is listed in Annex I of the CITES (Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Wild Animals and Plant Species).

Due to habitat degradation and pollution and excessive collection for pet trade, the number of these tomato frogs has decreased drastically. Against this pressure, CITES is immediately included in Annex I (the species listed in Annex I are prohibited from trade).

A research on artificial production techniques has been conducted at Baltimore University in the USA to increase the number of small and genetic diversity populations in this country.

Some US zoos have formed a consortium and set up an exhibition in the zoo Parc Zoologique Ivoloina in Madagascar to inform the locals about the natural heritage of this eye-catching species. Little is still known about this frog, and more research needs to be done on its distribution, behavior and potential threats before effective safeguards are taken.

Decoration:

Tomato frogs are terrestrial frogs, but still need to be kept moist. The best way to do this is to cover the floor with a mixture of crusted chips and moist algae. Substrate can be easily removed and changed when replacement is required.

The frogs vivarium can provide impressive images with artificial plants or natural wood ornaments for a more natural look and provide more tunnels for frogs, and these tunnels are good hiding places.

Trailing plants are very good at hiding plumbing, electrical cables and equipment, as well as providing protection for young amphibians.

Heating:

Tomato frogs require a constant air temperature of 75 ° F. This temperature is best achieved by glass terrariums with the adhesion of a heating pad. To ensure that this temperature remains constant, it is necessary to use a thermostat and a moisture meter.

Facts About Tomato Frogs

  • There is no tooth in the tomato frog. The roof of the mouth is covered with bumps that are used to grind food.
  • Tomato frog are terrestrial animals. It prefers sandy and muddy areas.
  • Although the tomato frog is close to water, it easily chokes (tomato frogs are bad swimmers).
  • Tomato frog is a night animal (active overnight).
  • Tomato frog is a carnivore (meat-eating). Her diet includes insects (such as insects, mosquitoes and flies), worms, and other small invertebrates.
  • The tomato frog sits and waits until the perfect prey appears (ambush predator). Using the surprise element, he catches the prey in a blink of an eye.
  • The brightly colored skin of the tomato frog indicates that the animal is tasteless. Tomato frog releases sticky, white colored mucus that can cause irritation of the mucous membrane of various animals (including humans, which may experience a severe allergic reaction after consumption of this frog). Tomato frog can swell your body to look bigger and scary.
  • The natural enemies of tomato frogs are snakes.
  • The mating season of tomato frogs takes place from February to March (after the rainy season), in swamps, shallow ponds and near slow-flowing rivers.
  • Men are very vocal. They make loud calls to attract females during the night.
  • The female lays 1,000 to 1,500 eggs directly on the water surface. Eggs hatch after 36 hours. Tadpoles are filter feeders, which means they eat small pieces of food that can drain from the water.
  • The tadpoles turn into young frogs 45 days later. Tomato frogs grow rapidly. At the age of one year they reach adult size and sexual maturity.
  • Tomato frog can survive more than 10 years in the wild.

Is a tomato frog poisonous?

The bright colors of the Tomato Frog are thought to function as a warning that this frog is poisonous to potential predators; A white substance is produced from the skin of the frog (such as colubrid snakes), which has the property of glue to deter predators, which can cause an allergic reaction in humans.

Are tomato frogs good pets?

They have adapted to the wild. It is prohibited to collect and feed

Can you hold a tomato frog?

Tomato frogs, like most frogs, do not like to be handled. In fact, oils and soap residues on human skin can be harmful to tomato frogs. If you need to hold your frogs, wash and rinse your hands thoroughly before and after using the frogs.
 
Tomato frogs secrete a stressed white liquid and this can cause the adhesive to appear in your hand. This is the frog’s defensive mechanism and a sure sign of an unhappy tomato frog. If you have anything in hand, wash it immediately and make sure you don’t touch your eyes or mouth until your hands are thoroughly cleaned.
 
These frogs are hidden creatures. Therefore, avoid handling your tomato frogs unless necessary, this is an important consideration for both you and the animal’s health.
Store tomato frogs only with other tomato frogs. This will prevent excessive predator-predator stress and transmission of disease or parasites. Also, keep in mind that the secretions of some frogs are fatal to others, and finally young tomato frogs will make a nice meal for adult tomato frogs. So just keep tomato frogs of similar ages and sizes together.

Where does a tomato frog live?

This frog, native to Madagascar, is seen in the northeast of the island, near the Gulf of Antongil and south to Andevoranto. However, its exact distribution is uncertain since it is similar to the close relative Dyscophus guinet.

What eats a tomato frog?

Tomato frogs have a diet of live food. The essence of the live food diet should be high in protein and relatively easy to digest. We have observed that brown crickets are the most easily accepted feed, but you can also use black crickets or grasshoppers. Tomato frogs can also be fed small mice ‘small pinky’ or worms once a week to add a little more protein to their diet.

Can frogs eat tomatoes?

No 🙂


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