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Bullfrog (Rana catesbeiana)
A.K.A. North American Bullfrog
Bullfrogs are rather large frogs with brown and green mottled coloration. Females can grow up to 8 ½ to 12 inches long, while males typically only grow from 8 to 8 ½ inches long. Males are slimmer and have large ear drums on both sides of the head. They are nocturnal, and the males may croak at night. A well cared for Bullfrog can live from 8-10 years.
Habitat and Tank Requirements:
This species is common throughout North America. They are very aquatic and are found naturally around ponds and streams. Provide your frog with plenty of plants, wood, and/or rocks to climb. The bottom of the tank should have a substrate of gravel or soil for the frogs to burrow.
Approximately 1/3 to 1/2 of their tank should be water. You can either use an under-gravel filtration system or clean the water every 2-3 days. Use common sense when choosing a filter: a pump that is too small will leave the water dirty, while a too-powerful pump with filter out the microorganisms needed to maintain a healthy pH.
Be sure there are no openings in the tank through which the frog can escape. A hole large enough for a frog to stick its head out of is large enough for it to escape.
Because of their size, a single bullfrog will need a 15-20 gallon tank. As with all frogs, do not keep different species of frogs in the same tank. There is a risk of disease and parasites being spread between species, even if the carrier frog does not show any symptoms.
The comfortable temperature range for these frogs is 74-85º F during the day and a slight drop to around 69-75º F at night. LEDs or other low-wattage light bulbs work best for maintaining these temperatures.
These frogs will feed on small crickets, fruit flies, mealworms, wax worms, and pretty much anything else they can get in their mouth. They will eat mice, but be sure the mice are dead first, as they could harm your bullfrog. It is recommended that food be dusted with calcium to prevent bone softening.
Allow your frog time to become accustomed to its new home before handling them extensively. Handling them little by little over a period of time lets the animal get used to you and reduces stress.