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talk to the frog / Care Sheets / Budgett's Frog (Lepidobatrachus laevis)
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1842 posts

# Posted: 28 Oct 2010 18:46 · Edited by: Sandy_Bear

Species Scientific Name: Lepidobatrachus laevis

Common Name:
Budgett's Frog

Similar Species: Dwarf Budgett's Frog (Lepidobatrachus llanensis); Freddy Kreuger Frog (Lepidobatrachus laevis x Lepidobatrachus llanensis); (Lepidobatrachus asper)

Enclosure size: 15-20 gallon or larger aquarium; (18-Cube Exoterra or larger terrarium)

Do not use aquarium pebbles. Do not use river stones that are are able to fit in the frogs mouth. The frog may eat pebbles or stones and can become impacted from this. A bare bottom tank is best with about 4-6 inches of dechlorinated tap water. A “turtle dock” or large stone can be provided if the frog decides to emerge.

Temps: 78-85 degrees

Humidity: N/A

Lighting: Incandescent and UVB fluorescent – optional. Use a timer to provide a proper 12-hour day/night cycle.

Diet: Juveniles feed daily, they will only eat if they are hungry, but offer them food anyways. Adults 2-3 times a week. Feed a variety of insects (crickets, Dubai, wax worms, butter worms, night crawlers) and live bearing fish (Mollies and Platies make the best feeders – stay away from goldfish). Gut-loading and dusting prey is recommend (although dusting will be difficult due to the underwater feedings).
Live rodents may be offered twice a year as a treat only.

Water: Dechlorinate water with amphibian safe products such as “Prime”, “Reptisafe” and “AmQuel”. PH should be neutral (7.0). Be aware of new drift wood, it may make the water too acidic, so keep an eye on that if using real drift wood.

Life span: 10-20+ years

Average Adult Sizes For Both Sexes:

Males 3 1/2 - 4 inches (9 cm) SVL
Females 4 1/2 - 6 inches (15cm) SVL

Calcium, Calcium with D3, Vitamin & Mineral Supplements

Females of the species can grow to 4.5 to 6 inches SVL and will be the larger of the two sexes. Males can grow 3 1/2 to 4 inches SVL (Snout to Vent Length) when mature. Males will also develop a darker colored throat with loose skin, which is caused by their calling. Females will have a lighter grey-white colored throat.

Diurnal or Nocturnal: Both

Tank Maintenance:
A filter should be used and complete water changes should be done every week. Without a filter, water changes should be done daily, and after the frog has soiled the water. The tank should be taken apart and cleaned with hot water every month. Do not use soap or other chemicals.

Aestivation: Aestivation normally occurs between the months of October to February. Make sure that your Budgett's Frog is very well fed prior to aestivation time. You also want to make sure that he has passed through all the food in his system before putting him down to aestivate. Budgett's Frogs can die if there is food left rotting in their gut during aestivation.

The aestivation set up can be a spare fish tank or a large bucket. Be sure to allow for 8-12 inches of dry coco-fiber substrate in the aestivation chamber. A water dish should be placed on top of the substrate in case your Budgett's Frog emerges from aestivation early.

Remove the Budgett's frog from his water home and place him in the dry aestivation tank. He will instinctively start to burrow down to the bottom of the container, and his skin will shed and form a protective cocoon encasing his body. Aestivation will last for a couple of months, and can last as long as 9 months.

To awaken the Budgett's frog from his slumber, you will start to moisten the coco-fiber until it is very wet. At this point the Budgett's frog will leave his cocoon and emerge.

This process should be done every year.

Social Structure:
These frogs should be kept singly. If kept in groups, all the frogs should be of the same size. These frogs are very cannibalistic so be careful!
Never mix different species of frogs in the same terrarium.

Handling: Frogs should never be handled unless absolutely necessary. Frogs are ornamental like fish. An appropriate sized fish net should be used when removing the Budgett's frog from his enclosure. Be careful of fingers near your Budgett's frog during feeding. A bite from and adult can be quite painful.

Shopping List:

A 15 or 20 gallon aquarium or larger (Or 18-Cube Exoterra or larger terrarium)
Screen Top (for an aquarium)
Terrarium Filter (ex: Tetrafauna Decorative ReptoFilter)
Appropriate Live plants (aquatic or semi aquatic)
Water Dechlorinator (Prime, AmQuel, or Reptisafe)
A water siphon
A “Turtle Dock”, should the frog need to emerge

Aestivation Home:

Large bucket (4-5 gallon) or spare aquarium
Water Dish

Heating & Lighting:
Submersible aquarium heater (if needed)
Fluorescent tube and fixture and/or UVB bulb and fixture

Appropriate sized live Crickets, Wax Worms, Butter Worms, Dubai Roaches, Red Wrigglers, Night-crawlers
Appropriate sized live feeder fish, Mollies, Platties or guppies (no goldfish)
Appropriate sized live rodents (only twice a year!)
Cricket keeper
Cricket food and water gel
Calcium Dusting Powder
Calcium with D3 Dusting Powder
Vitamin & Mineral Dusting Powder


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