Other common names: Bumble Bee Toad; Bumblebee Toad; Redbelly Toad; Yellow and Black Walking Toad;
Scientific name: Melanophryniscus stelzneri
The spectacular colors and comic, ambling gait of the Bumblebee Walking Toad render it a much sought-after pet, Considered difficult captives in the past, their needs are now well-understood, and captive breeding successes are increasing.
The Bumblebee Walking Toad is known only from several distinct populations in Argentina, where it inhabits rock-studded grasslands. Similar relatives that occur elsewhere in South America are sold under the same name.
Appearance / health:
The Bumblebee Walking Toad’s body is jet black in color and bears blotches of bright yellow across the back and brilliant red on the underside. With an average length of 0.75-1.5 inches, it is one of the smallest toads.
Well-cared-for pets may reach 10+ years of age. Nutritional disorders brought about by an improperly-varied diet are the most commonly-encountered health problems. Animals kept in consistent conditions of high humidity fail to thrive.
Behavior / temperament:
Bumblebee Walking Toads are rather shy, and spend much time in hiding. However, they adjust well to proper care and eventually become more visible.
They should be handled only when necessary, and then only by being urged into a plastic container so that the skin’s protective mucus is not removed. Skin secretions may cause irritations when transferred to wounds, eyes, or the mouth.
Bumblebee Walking Toads do well in groups. A 10 gallon aquarium makes a good home for 6-8 adults.
A mix of “Eco-Earth”, peat moss and topsoil, topped by sheet moss, may be used as a substrate. Cork bark, plastic caves and live plants serve well as hiding spots. Temperatures should range from 72-76 F, with a humidity level of 50-60%; long-term conditions of higher humidity usually prove fatal.
Your pets should be offered a variety of small insects, including flour and bean beetle larvae, springtails, fruit flies, and newly-hatched sow bugs, crickets and phoenix worms.
Most meals should be coated with a powdered Calcium/Vitamin D3 supplement. A vitamin/mineral supplement should be used 2-3x weekly.
Mature females may be distinguished from males by their larger size and stouter build. Breeding may be stimulated by a 2-3 week-long period at 55-60 F.
Eggs are deposited in strings and attached to aquatic plants. The tadpoles hatch in 3-5 days and will accept fish food flakes and commercial tadpole pellets. Metamorphosis is achieved in 50-75 days.
Written by Frank Indiviglio
smile, movement, color, fun, Maintenance