Other common names: Freddy Kruger Frog
Scientific name: Lepidobatrachus laevis
Budgett’s Frogs are found in central South America in Paraguay and Bolivia. Outside of breeding season, these frogs are usually burrowed underground. When the rainy season comes, they will awake and begin moving to shallow pools of water for breeding.
Appearance / health:
Budgett’s Frogs are usually a light green color. Some individuals may be more yellowish or grayish while some even have mottled colors. Their bodies are large and flattened like a pillow, with a mouth stretching nearly from shoulder to shoulder. Their eyes are set high above the head, making them look like mini-blobs. They also have short stubby limbs, so they do not swim well. Budgett’s Frogs are fairly large, with adults reaching up to 5 or more inches.
Behavior / temperament:
These frogs are very aggressive and will eat just about anything that comes near, including other frogs of their own species. Do not handle these frogs unless absolutely necessary. The oils and salts of our skin are toxic and will cause damage to them. Also, their bite can be quite painful - They have fangs! Given the proper conditions, these frogs are very hardy. The lack of cleanliness inside their tank can lead to death! Always wash out the entire enclosure and all it’s contents weekly and change out water bowls every other day.
A 10 gallon tank set up as half land/half water is suitable for one adult frog. Keep these frogs single as they will try to eat other tank mates. A secure lid is needed in case of escapes.
Temperatures of the land side should be kept between 75-80F with nighttime temperatures safely dropping to 65-70F. The water side of the tank should be maintained between 80-85F. A small internal filter may also be used inside the water area. To create a half land/half water tank, simply portion off half of the tank with Plexiglas and aquarium sealant. Test it to make sure no water leaks through. Fill the land side with no chemical potting soil, coco fiber, peat moss, and like substrates. Sphagnum moss can be added to the top as well as hiding places.
On the water side, smooth gravel may be added or it may be left plain. Water and land depth should be 3-5 inches deep. Another tank set up option would be to have water throughout the entire aquarium, with driftwood and other items added so that they protrude through the water giving the frogs an area to haul out. Live or fake plants may be used throughout the tank as well. Tank must be cleaned weekly as these frogs are very sensitive to harmful bacteria through their skin. Even with a filter, the water still must be changed weekly as well.
Adults should be offered a variety of worms and insects such as crickets, cockroaches, wax worms, earthworms, and other soft bodied food items. Large adults can also eat pinkie mice. Juveniles and froglets will need insects such as young crickets, cockroaches, worms, etc. Tadpoles need fish flakes, live blood or black worms, daphnia, and other small prey items. Calcium and vitamin supplements are needed 1-3 times a week.
Captive breeding is not too common with this species yet. Reproduction of these frogs is no different than any other frog. The males will begin calling the females during the rainy season, and when receptive the female will allow the male to mount her in amplexus. She will then lay up to 1,500 eggs which grow very rapidly. Those who have bred them are amazed at the growth rate of the eggs, tadpoles, and froglets. The eggs are laid and less than 2 days later will hatch. The tadpoles then undergo a quick metamorphosis and will be froglets in less than 3 weeks. The froglets of the Budgett’s Frog are very aggressive and cannibalistic.