Raising Tadpoles into Fine Young Frogs

It’s a rare sight to find frog eggs in a pond, so when I came upon some, I searched the water for tadpoles too. I was lucky enough to see a bunch of wriggling dots swimming on the bottom of the pond. I took some home, two to be exact, and we immersed ourselves in the world of frogs.

How to Care for Tadpoles

 

Rules and Regulations

There are rules and regulations for raising tadpoles and keeping frogs. Ensure you research this information before taking tadpoles from the wild. Different countries have different rules; even different states have different rules. If you have to fill out some forms it is worth the trouble – honest.

Housing

We set our tadpoles up in a little bucket-like container filled with their pond water. I knew eventually, when they started to get their legs, they would need a home with both a water and land component. We had that tank ready for them after a few days of bringing them home and luckily we did, they grow really fast!

It’s very important to top up the water every couple of days to keep it aerated and to stop the water from evaporating. Make sure the water is safe for the tadpoles though,  tadpoles and frogs are every sensitive to chemicals and other nasties in our home environment.  We used tap water but had it sitting outside in the sun for at least 24 hours before using it.

Food

It’s easy to make food for tadpoles. We boiled half a lettuce leaf until it became opaque. After it cooled down, we could feed it to our tadpoles. We had plenty of leftovers, so we kept it in the fridge for a week (until it smelt a little funky) and then we made a fresh batch.

We fed the tadpoles when ever there was no food left. It’s important not to overfeed them or the water will become murky and that isn’t healthy for the tadpoles.

Tadpoles turn into Frogs

Here is our visual diary. Using all these photos we can re-live the experience again and again. This is a perfect opportunity for children to learn about metamorphosis and life cycles.

The day we brought them home.

Loving to watch the tadpoles.

Tadpoles grow fast!

With two back legs.

With four legs but still quite the tail.

  Shrivelling tail.

 

 Setting our Now Frogs Free

Unfortunately, Miss Possum couldn’t be there for this opportunity but we talked about it before it happened. She knew that the frogs had to go back into the wild when they had all their legs. She wasn’t too upset but she did miss watching them swim about in their tank.

 

Real-life activities with wildlife are the most memorable for children. Watching tadpoles transform into frogs is just that little extra special don’t you think?!

 Other frog activities

Frog mask

 Frog Footprint Fun

Spotlighting

CD Crafty Critters

Frog Egg Fun

Frog & Tadpole Books

The Wide-mouthed Frog by Keith Faulkner

Where do Frog Come From by Alex Vern

Tale of a Tadpole by Karen Wallace

Growing Frogs by Vivian French

 

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Comments

    • pawhitehouse says

      Great question Emily. To be honest, I don’t know much about newts (we don’t have any in Australia) but it’s really up to you.
      Usually I’d say let nature takes its course but if I was given the option of saving a whole heap of tadpoles or letting a common bird eating them, i know which one i’d choose (the tadpoles of course) but which is more precious where you are from? You can either choose one or the other or just let nature take its course.

  1. Laura says

    Tree frogs go through all the normal stages of frogs, but as adult frogs, tree frogs dwell in the trees and shrubs. Tree frogs still mate and lay their eggs in the water, as both frogs and toads do.

  2. Kathy Helseth says

    We have regular tadpoles and then some super size bull frog tadpoles. Over the week-end all of our regular tadpoles disappeared. Would the bull frog tadpoles eat them? The Ball frogs have their back legs . we can’t figure out where the little ones–who were getting their legs–have gone.

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