Friday, May 29, 2009


We are a family of frog lovers. 2008 was the Year of the Frog, a year dedicated to increasing the world's awareness of the plight of frogs and other amphibians. These fascinating creatures are under constant threat of extinction brought on by disease (chytridiomycosis - a highly contagious fungal disease), pollution, and habitat destruction.

As the owner of two captive bred poison dart frogs, I can attest to their intriguing "personalities" and behaviors. Creating a vivarium for them to live in has also been an enriching learning experience for me and my children.

This is Tarzan, our Dyeing Poison Dart Frog (Dendrobates tinctorius). His large heart-shaped front toe pads are indicative of males. Whenever he's on the hunt chasing fruitflies, the toes twitch with excitement. These colorful frogs hail from Guyana, French Guiana, Surinam, and Brazil. They are fairly large (can be more than 2") and prefer to live on the forest floor among leaf litter. Tarzan is quite bold and curious and likes to sit up on logs and rocks and survey his kingdom.

Here is his tank mate Jane, a female auratus (Dendrobates auratus). Auratus originate in Central America in Nicaragua and Panama. Like Tincs, they are primarily terrestrial frogs. One of the fascinating features of PDFs is the number of variants or morphs. Janey's appearance closely resembles that of the Canal Zone morphs found in the wild along both sides of the Panama Canal.

For excellent up-to-date information on poison dart frogs around the world, visit

Get involved! You can help save the frogs. Calling all poets - Enter the Save the Frogs Poetry Contest at

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