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FAQs About African Dwarf Frogs, Compatibility

Related Articles: Keeping African Clawed Frogs and African Dwarf Frogs by Neale Monks, African Dwarf Frogs, Amphibians, Turtles

Related FAQs: Dwarf African Frogs 1, Dwarf African Frogs 2, ADF Identification, ADF Behavior, ADF Selection, ADF Systems, ADF Feeding, ADF Disease, ADF Reproduction, & FAQs on: Amphibians 1, Amphibians 2, Frogs Other Than African and Clawed, African Clawed Frogs, TurtlesAmphibian Identification, Amphibian Behavior, Amphibian Compatibility, Amphibian Selection, Amphibian Systems, Amphibian Feeding, Amphibian Disease, Amphibian Reproduction,

ADF's need to be kept with peaceful animals that won't bite them or eat all their food. NOT puffers, cichlids of any size...

re: Omg my African dwarf frog help; comp.      3/4/15
So what other critters can I keep with African dwarf frogs besides snails.
I got at least a 2 gallon tank maybe 2.5...
<Not much cohabits with dwarf frogs save other dwarf frogs. Cherry Shrimps can work, though the frogs probably eat any baby shrimps. Other than that, honestly, they're best kept alone. All but the most smallest and most gentle fish are going to compete for food. At a push I suppose you could try things like Boraras spp. Rasboras for example, or Oryzias ricefish.
Strict surface feeders like Hatchetfish and Halfbeaks might work too. But such fish are specialist fish that demand specific water chemistry, so research carefully before trying. Nothing much sold as community fish in your local pet store will work well with the frogs. Sooner or later the frogs will starve.>
The beta seems super happy about the frog being gone... At least I think.
<Likely so. Bettas don't really like company.>
He's all spreading his fins out and showing off. Would 2 to 2.5 be enough for just him and a snail?
<Doable, yes. Just keep on top of water quality.>
So when I get a tank with frogs I don't think the beta is going in the tank. Just frogs and a snail. But what else can I put since the beta is happier (i think) without froggies.
<Hope this helps, Neale.>
re: Omg my African dwarf frog help      3/4/15

Also, sorry for so many emails. I just no longer trust the pet store and I don't know who else to ask and you seem to know what you're talking about. Would I maybe get better cared for animals from this tiny pet store called pets plus. Or do they probably get there animals from the same places as the mass chain stores like PetSmart and PetCo.
Thanks a bunch
<Local "mom and pop" tropical fish stores can be good. Varies; some excellent, others hopeless. I suspect the founders of such small retailers are often knowledgeable and started out in the trade because they loved the hobby. But time passes, the maybe the kids or whoever that take over the store lack that interest, or are focused more on sales or expansion.
Whatever. But if you find a good local fish shop, you'll recognise it. Healthy livestock. No sick/dead fish. Decent variety, with mostly sensible fish rather than things like Convicts and Oscars and giant catfish that cause problems. Plant selection is similarly good, with few non-aquatics (stuff like "wheat plants" and "aquatic palms" and other such things that sooner or later die in fish tanks). If you ask to see the fish feeding, they'll oblige. You may find fish being bred. Other fish may be being
medicated, with a clear sign "not for sale". Sick fish aren't necessarily a black mark against a store, provided the retailer is doing something about it. As for where the fish come from, hard to say. A few big players export fish, but there are lots of smaller operators too, plus local breeders.
Hmm... best move really is try to find a local aquarium club... many big cities in the US have them, and they're often founts of information about the local trade. Cheers, Neale.>
re: Omg my African dwarf frog help. Now Pictus cats; incomp. w/ Af. frogs       3/4/15
One more thing....
Do you know anything about pictus catfish. Im not sure I spelled that right. Do you know if they would be ok tank mates for frogs?
<Up till the catfish got hungry! Pimelodus pictus, sometimes called the Spotted Pim, is a lovely catfish. It's social (keep in groups of 3+), peaceful towards things it can't swallow (basically safe with anything Tiger Barb sized or bigger) and fairly easy to keep so far as diet and water chemistry go. On the downside it is a night predator, it's restless (alarms more docile fish), and gets quite big (at least 5 inches, but possibly more). Suitable for tanks upwards of, say, 50 gallons? If you must
have a catfish for your frogs, perhaps look at Whiptails, though they'd still need 8+ gallons, even the smallest species.
Cheers, Neale.>

Hi, visited your website...
Neale: ADF, comp.      4/30/14

Hi I visited your website Saw an answer from Neale it was about dwarf frogs the bigger ones and smaller ones. I was given two frogs and the bigger one kept attacking the smaller one. I had to keep them separate. Now I know. I still have the smaller one.
<It's unusual for them to be serious bullies. Adding extra frogs to the tank should help, spreading out any aggression.>
I'm watching him cause I saw a red spot under his abdomen now it went away.
if it comes back I'll bathe him in api's general cure.
I've been changing the water a lot more often. I wanted to thank you on your knowledge I don't think the petsmarts know there's a difference cause they have them in the same tank.
<Usually isn't, but as with many animals, there are always exceptions!>
They shouldn't put the bigger one with the smaller. I've seen my bigger one Piddle attack my smaller one named Twiddle and all Twiddle wanted was Piddle's company. it was sad.
<As I say, consider adding two more, and make sure they're all well fed.
They should get along fine if they all have hiding places and room to swim.>
I kept Piddle but he died I think he hit the plastic point on the plant when i did a water change and he died. I fed them the same though, maybe I should have fed the bigger one more pellets and bloodworms then i did for
the smaller one?
<For sure, these frogs can easily starve. They need a fair amount of food.>
Just wanted to let you know I think your knowledgeable and wish I would have seen your answer to that person while I owned the two frogs together. Ok, bye, Donna
<Thanks for writing, and good luck with your frogs. Cheers, Neale.>

Frog and Betta Fish 9/21/12
Can African Dwarf Frogs be placed with Betta fish?
<Sure. This is for your pond, right? Be careful the frog can't get out.
Snail and Betta Fish

Can mystery snails be placed with Betta fish?
<Sure. - Rick>
Frog and Betta Fish 9/21/12
I will be keeping the frog in an indoor aquarium.
It has a sensitivity to temperature changes and intolerance to 80 degree plus temperatures.
Would a sponge filter work in an aquarium containing both a Betta fish and an African Dwarf frog?
<A sponge filter would work well in this situation. - Rick>

Plec harassing my ADF    6/6/12
Hi,  I'd really appreciate your advice re a new addition to my tank - it's been up and running for about 4 months, (60 x 30 x 35cm, heater, Fluval sponge filter, bubble stone, live and fake plants, bog wood well soaked, a couple of ornaments) with a Siamese fighter, a small common Plec (about 4cm long at the moment, but steadily getting bigger),
<And MUCH too bug for this aquarium. Do understand that kept correctly he'll get to about 15-20 cm within the first year, and up to 45 cm by the second year. These are MASSIVE, MESSY fish with no place in any aquarium as small as yours. If you want an algae-eating catfish, then return this fish IMMEDIATELY and instead buy a juvenile Bristlenose Plec, a charming little catfish that does a better job at eating algae and only gets to about 12-15 cm in length.>
4 neon tetra and 4 penguin tetra, plus I recently added 3 platies. The fish all seem to have settled down with each other and seem happy, no behavioural issues and no illnesses, and the live plants are growing nicely, BUT - I added an ADF two weeks ago, purchased from my local specialty fish shop in good faith (having really quizzed the shopkeeper as to whether my setup was suitable), and several times I've seen the Plec harass him to the extent I've had to gently chase him off with the net for fear of damage to the poor frog.
<Yes, this combination is a bad one.>
I'm being very careful about making sure he gets his share of bloodworms, by distracting the other fish at the far end of the tank and then pipetting them down to his favourite corner and watching him eat several;
I'm also mindful of the water level and he seems quite happy taking a couple of strokes to the top for a gulp of air (plus he likes sitting on the top of the filter nearly out of the water) but I'm really very worried that the Plec and the little guy are going to prove to be incompatible. He has lots of hidey spaces to get away from the Plec, but I know that the slightest damage could be very dangerous to him and of course whenever he comes down to his corner to eat, if the Plec is near him it will dash over and very vigorously hoover his back. The rest of the fish pay him no mind at all. I thought perhaps that the Plec has a taste for frog slime and is greedily cleaning him up, but I don't know whether actually he's being aggressive and is trying to hurt him? I'd be really grateful for some advice here! I'd rather rehome the Plec than the frog (but if so are there any other bottom feeders that would be an appropriate substitute, or would a snail be better?)
<Nerite snails are outstanding algae-eaters and would work very well in this tank. Tylomelania spp snails would make fun scavengers; there are lots of them sold under various names, use Google to see pictures of them. Don't get an Apple (= Mystery) snail though -- they're difficult to keep and don't eat much algae anyway.>
I also read that they like company so would be very happy to get a companion for him if you think rehoming the Plec is the best idea.
<See above.>
Apologies for the long email, and thanks in advance for your input. Yours,  Alexandra
<Glad to help. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Plec harassing my ADF – 6/6/12

Hi Neale, just wanted to say very many thanks for the fast and helpful reply - I'll see about rehoming the Plec immediately. Thanks again Alex
<Real good. Glad to help! Neale.>

Mixing ADFs w/ Pterophyllum in a large setting    3/19/12
Good afternoon! Thank you in advance for taking the time to read my story and question. I am currently keeping one adult (almost breeding size) and a juvenile angelfish in a 25ish gal tank.. I was ordering a 105 and was wondering if I raised half the tank shallow for the frogs and left half bare bottom if I could put my 4 ADFS in with the two angelfish and still have no over crowding.. or would the angel being an established adult with its own territory not enjoy the frogs? Waste output atm is way leff than what the filters are capable of so I was thinking the frogs would look GORGEOUS against the java moss I have in the angel tank
<Am not a fan of mixing FW angels and Hymenochirus period... as the former can become aggressive toward the latter... and in a large setting, it's too hard to get the frogs food/s... See WWM re both species needs, compatibility. Bob Fenner>
Re: Mixing ADFs w/ Pterophyllum in a large setting   3/19/12

Thanks, I've opted to add a Pleco.
<... do see WWM re stkg./sel... Ancistrus, other genera... B>

African dwarf frog tank mates    1/30/12
I have a 75-gallon freshwater tank. It has been up and running for 3 or so months now.  The temp is at 76.5 degrees, ammonia is registering 0, nitrate/nitrite 0, and pH is around 7.0. I have an Aqueon filter, which is suitable for up to a 90 gallon tank. I also have a heater, to keep the temp stable. I have 6 assorted Platies, 4 assorted mollies, 4 black skirt tetras, and a snail. I wanted to get an African dwarf frog to add to my tank.  Would these conditions and tank mates be suitable for one?
<Hello Jessica. In theory you can keep Hymenochirus spp. with any very small, non-aggressive, non-nippy fish in the 0.5-1.5 inch size range.
Anything above that is risky. Black Skirt Tetras are definite fin-nippers and would be poor tankmates. Platies and especially Mollies require somewhat different water chemistry (Mollies must have hard, alkaline water conditions, ideally with a bit of salt added). Given your pH is only 7, my assumption would be that your water isn't hard, so you're likely to have problems keeping Mollies and probably Platies for any great length of time (by which I mean years rather than 3 months!). Review, and act accordingly.
Cheers, Neale.>

Best Option? ADF... comp., fdg., sys.     11/12/11
I, like many others, purchased an ADF because they were cute; without looking into the details of cohabitation and tank size. (I did check for water temp and filtration). I put my adorable ADF into a 25 gallon tank (chastising myself now after reading your info) This is where my question comes into play that I haven't been able to find on your website. Unfortunately I did put him in that tank with a couple of tiger barbs,
<These are nippy and need to be kept in groups of at least 6 specimens'¦>
a molly ( I know.)
<Do need particular environmental conditions; hard, alkaline water, ideally slightly brackish; not ideal tankmates for the barbs or frog.>
After 3 days I thought he had been eaten after I read that tiger barbs were aggressive.
<When kept incorrectly, yes.>
I then bought some ghost fish that eat freeze dried blood worms.
<What are "Ghost Fish"? Do you mean Black Ghost Knifefish or Ghost Catfish? Neither are "scavengers" and the Black Ghost Catfish especially is difficult to feed, needs excellent water quality, and will need a MUCH bigger aquarium than yours. For what it's worth, freeze-dried bloodworms are okay as a treat once a week, but they're of NO VALUE at all as a staple food, so if you're feeding mostly flake, then choose fish that eat flake. Black Ghosts certainly won't live on flake alone, and need a variety of live, fresh, or wet-frozen foods. Ghost Catfish are marginally less picky, and do well on live foods like daphnia and brine shrimp, together with wet-frozen invertebrates of various types. They may eat flake, but not reliably so.>
All of this happened two months ago. 6 days ago, my ADF showed up bouncing along the bottom of the tank. I am super excited that he is alive and healthy and all of the fish I have acquired since his assumed demise (ghost and angel fish) have not attacked him. However, in the interim, I loved the ADF so I bought a few more and set them up in a 10 gallon tank with 6 fantailed guppies.
<Sounds a much more sensible set-up. Frogs best kept alone or with shrimps, but very small fish are fine.>
My question is, he is alive and healthy so far; but obviously he can't live on freeze dried blood worms.
<Indeed not. A mixed diet is best. Freeze-dried foods tend to cause constipation if used exclusively, so as I say, use once or twice a week. Think what would happen to you if you just ate dried meat like jerky all the time! Alternate with live, fresh or wet-frozen foods; this can be as easily done as finely chopping white cod or tilapia fillet and, occasionally, because they contain thiaminase, finely chopped shrimp. Wet-frozen foods can also be bought from pet stores, and stored safely in your freezer ("gamma" irradiated foods are even safer than foods sold for human consumption!). There are some pellet foods made specifically for frogs, and your pet store may sell them. Used once or twice a week, these are excellent supplements to a mixed diet.>
I have attempted to catch him and put him in the more appropriate tank but this is proving extremely difficult since he only makes an occasional appearance. (Remember, I didn't even know he was alive for two months). So. Do I leave him be and try to alternate his diet to a healthier state than constipation food, do I add a couple more ADF's and put some floating plants at the top and try to create a more conducive environment all around,(it is a 15" swim from the rocks to the top) or do I diligently keep at it until I catch him and transfer him to the 10 gallon tank?
<Would move this lone frog to the 10 gallon tank alongside your new frogs.>
Very worried and want my little froggies to have happy lives. Am losing sleep, any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you,
<Hope this helps, Neale.>
Re: Best Option?    11/12/11

Thank you so much, your suggestions as far as what to do with my lone froggie are in alignment with what I felt would be best.
<Glad to help.>
(The ghost fish by the way, are the knife fish, black with white rings, and I will need to get a bigger tank once they start growing)
<Oh yes! Potentially, these beasts can get to around 50 cm/20 inches, though few live that long in captivity. They do grow slowly, but part of that is surely that many specimens are half-starved in community aquaria. Lovely fish, but difficult to keep properly. In the wild they inhabit deep, fast-moving streams and rivers often near waterfalls. They like water current, oxygen, shade, and insect larvae to eat!>
Thank you also for the food information. I should have done more research initially, but with your additional knowledge I'm sure I can create a happy, healthy environment. Thank you also for such a prompt reply. Best wishes
<Thanks for the kind words! Cheers, Neale.>

ADF Compatibility  10/23/11
I have been searching online for quite awhile about ADF compatibility and have not found a lot of useful information about what to keep them with (outside of what they should NOT be kept with).
<Ideally, they're kept alone.>
There is, however, the exception of the common male Betta-ADF combination, but I have tried this. Although they don't kill/hurt each other, ADFs seem a lot happier without.
<Indeed. Bettas are unpredictable, and while they can work with Dwarf Frogs, there are Bettas that decide to nip at them. Conversely, some have supposed that the frogs bite the tails of the Bettas, but I'm skeptical.
Frogs can't chew, so their attacks are limited to things they can swallow whole, or else they give up. It's hard to imagine animals with such weak jaws seriously damaging the fins of Bettas that weren't already weakened or tatty somehow.>
They also seem to be content with shrimp, but what I am looking for, is information about fish they can be happily kept with. Badis badis in particular?
<A very good option. In fact any small, not-aggressive, non-nippy aquarium fish with similar water chemistry and temperature requirements is on the cards. In other words, water that is neither too soft or too hard, and low to middling in temperature, 22-25 C/72-77 F. Obvious choices would include Celestial Danios, White Cloud Mountain Minnows, Endler Guppies, Heterandria formosa, Ricefish, Pygmy Corys like Corydoras hastatus, Whiptails like Rineloricaria parva, and of course most of the smaller shrimps and snails.
The main problem with tankmates is getting food down to the bottom where the frogs eat. So you might elect to stick with surface/middle level fish to start with, and only added bottom dwellers after a few months, once you're sure the frogs are eating well and recognise the foods you're putting out for them. On the other hand, newborn Endler Guppies and young shrimps would be on the menu as far as the frogs are concerned.>
Are female Bettas less aggressive/likely to chase?
<Not really. I don't think the nipping is aggression so much as a tendency to view a frog rising to the surface as potential food. Even of the frog itself is too big, perhaps the toes look too much like mosquito larvae?>
Thank you for your time and consideration for my questions. I look forward to reading your reply.
<Glad to help. Cheers, Neale.>

My African dwarf frog died, incomp.  6/4/2011
Hi I bought an African dwarf frog about over a month ago and everything seemed fine. I made sure to ask the pet store employee if the frog would survive in my 20gal tank filled with tropical fish, one shark, algae eater, and cat fish. and they suggested it would be fine.
<He was wrong. Generally, these Dwarf Frogs to much better kept among their own kind or mixed with very small, very gentle tankmates. Cherry Shrimps are ideal and bring some nice colour to the set-up. Very small tetras such as Neons can work, but there's always a risk with fish that they'll either steal food or nip the frogs.>
My frog actually did pretty good and was rarely bothered. In fact if the fish would try to mess with him, the shark scared them away. Now im not sure what exactly happened because I check on them every day and last night I checked and he was just laying upside down. I moved him around and he twitched but it looked like he was just slowly dying. I change my filter every month and do a water change a week after my filter change. And we bought blood worms but kinda figured that he would eat the left over fish flakes so stopped putting them in the tank and also because every time we put the worms, all the other fish went for it. So im not sure what else I can tell you but could it be that he wasn't eating properly?
<This is why the frogs are best kept alone. That way the foods either gone inside the frogs or left uneaten, so either way, you know the state of affairs. Cherry Shrimps aren't much competition, so the frogs will come out and feed happily. The problem is that fish can scare the frogs so much they don't eat enough.>
Also something we tried but not sure if it made a difference was since the fish tried to eat the worms as soon as they saw them ( we used a dropper to reach in) we turned off the light so they wouldn't see his food and he would have a better chance of eating.
<Do read, here:
Cheers, Neale.>

ADF/Betta feeding/stocking   3/14/11
Hello to all,. I have been keeping tanks for a few years now and I recently(within the past 9 months) obtained a female Betta splendid who was moved into my 10gal while the 10gal inhabitants were moved into a 30gal tank(gave me an excuse to get one:). As could be assumed she is loving the big tank, heavily planted with java fern forest(half the tank) and a large bed of java moss, a large silk plant and a log cave. My filter is a Aquatech 10-20, I buffered the output with some fake plants and tank silicone.
<Buffered? Output? You mean restricted the discharge flow? Why?>>
Then my mother decides to buy some ADF frogs from our local farmers market.
<Unusual item>
They were in a tiny little unheated un filtered tank with a lucky bamboo as an excuse(not even aquatic). well she promptly gave them to me because she figured id like them. She wouldn't however let me move them into the 10gal for 8 months. so I cleaned the minitank daily. Now they are in my 10gal with my Betta(she makes a great community Betta). I am part of another forum that pertains mainly to Bettas, when I asked if I could add another frog to the mix I got mixed answers about it. Some said I was already overstocked and others said go for it. Then there was the controversy of weather <whether> it should be male or female(mine are both males). They get along great besides the occasional wrapping session, one wraps around the others waist almost like how the mate but without eggs.
<... need to be separated>
Someone says that adding a female will cause aggression between the two males and others say that 3 males wont mix. I'm simply confused, I would like to add another frog and maybe a few more assassin snails(I have two of the same gender, no eggs for me). And on a small side of feeding, will freeze-dried bloodworms do as long as a presoak them?
<No... see WWM (the search tool) re their use>
I feed a staple pellet as well. Also can I continue feeding garlic to my Betta(once or twice a month for all my fish) if the frogs are in there.
<Not worthwhile>
And for stocking purposes, I can handle tads and eggs, I have a tank full of gourami,loach,cory and wcmm that don't mind a snack nor does the Betta.
<... please... run your messages through spelling/grammar checkers before
sending them (at least to us). Bob Fenner>

Is my African Dwarf Frog hunting and/or eating my Neon Tetras?   1/31/11
I have a relatively new 10 gallon tank. It is 2 months old, heated, filtered, with good water parameters (0.1 ppm ammonia,
<Should be 0.0>
0 ppm nitrite, 0 ppm nitrate, ph 7.8), fine gravel bottom, and a number of live plants. I clean regularly including vacuuming. The tank contains 2 Balloon Mollies, an African Dwarf Frog ("ADF"), and some Neon Tetras.
<Mmm... do review the needs of the fishes here... these species are not compatible>
I was given some poor advice at local fish stores which resulted in this mix of inhabitants.
Actually, the Neon Tetras seemed like a good addition when I got them a week ago. I got 6. Within 2 days, there were only 5. No corpse to be found.
Then a few days later, 2 more vanished in the night. Again, no corpses. Now I have just 3 left and need a few questions answered before I replace the ones who passed on.
1. Do ADFs hunt?
<Not for fishes>
Could they have killed the Tetras?
2. Where did the bodies go?
<Likely rapid decomposition>
I know that the Mollies will pick at anything, but I swear that the ADF look fatter the morning after the last 2 went missing. Could the ADF have consumed the dead Tetras?
<If they were very small, yes>
And hey, while I am at it, should I get another ADF to be the first one's friend?
<Are better in groups than solo>
Do I have room if I replace the Tetras. Can I have 2 ADFs, 6 Neon Tetras, and 2 Balloon Mollies in 10 gallons. (Keep in mind that the Balloon Mollies need less space than other Mollies I am told and I do clean regularly.)
<Again... I would ask that you search, read re the requirements... water quality in particular, for the species you have, want to keep. Try the search tool on WWM: http://wetwebmedia.com/Googlesearch.htm
Bob Fenner>
Thanks so much!
Eli in Toronto
Re: Is my African Dwarf Frog hunting and/or eating my Neon Tetras?   1/31/11

Mr. Fenner,
<Ms. B>
Thanks so much for your reply. A few things:
1. I know the ammonia should be 0.0 but it has been consistently at 0.1 ppm for at least a month. The nitrates and nitrites are consistently at 0.0. In light of this, people have theorized that my test kit is off.
<Mmm, I do hope this last is so>
2. How are my species not compatible?
<.... the mollies are brackish, cooler water... Please... don't write... read. B>
I have done a good bit of research and I recognize that the frog was a mistake. (It's what happens when you bring your 3 year old to the shop, he falls in love with the froggies, and the shop person is not well informed).
It is hard to feed him, but I have got a method down with brine shrimp (or bloodworms in future) delivered to him with tongs while the mollies are distracted by their flakes. The mollies like a bit of salt, but the frog would not, so the mollies do without the salt and seem ok. It seems that tetras, frogs, and mollies are all fine with the ph of 7.8 and the 78 degree temperature. The mollies produce waste, but I do partial water changes with vacuuming about twice a week. So what am I missing?
3. Can a neon tetra really decompose entirely in 10 hours??
<Mmm, yes>
They literally vanish overnight. There were three last night at 9:00 pm.
There was only one this morning at 7:00 am. And the frog's belly is distended to twice its normal size. They are (or were) very small tetras.
<Oh! Then likely consumed>
4. Finally, I did actually see the frog lunging at (or near) the tetras yesterday when they were close to the bottom of the tank. If the tetras are very small, could he have caught them?
Sorry to be a bother, but I really would like to stop making mistakes with this aquarium
<Ahh! Then investigate ahead of actions, purchases>
and find a good balance of compatible inhabitants. Thanks again for your generous time.
Eli in Toronto
<Cheers, BobF, who has visited there (and London, Ontario) and saw/visited w/ a bunch of folks from Ont. in Cozumel last mo... and will be doing so at the end of next!>

Mollies, gen. Incomp. w/ ADFs   1/28/11
Hi! I started a 14 gal freshwater tropical tank about 3 wks ago.
<Ah, this tank is a bit small for Mollies. Even if they live in the sense of water quality being adequate, maintaining the low levels of nitrate will be hard, and males will fight in such a small tank. For reliable results, treat 30 gallons as the minimum for Mollies.>
I started with two male balloon-bellied mollies, then added two ADF's over the next couple of weeks (since I didn't know that mollies prefer brackish conditions).
They seem to be doing fine.
<As they often do for weeks or months. The problem with Mollies is that they tend to become sickly over the long term kept in freshwater. Not always by any means, but easily 50% of the time. Hence the recommendation that Mollies be kept in their own tank, where water chemistry can be tweaked as required. They aren't good companions for frogs.>
I just have a few questions....(I don't trust PetSmart anymore) 1. I originally wanted to add more mollies to the tank, but reading info on mollies has made me think this would not be a good idea, as adding more male mollies would cause aggression problems, and I don't have the room to add enough female mollies for my two males, is this true?
<Is true. In 14 gallons you'd be lucky to keep one male and two females safely. Two females or three females even might be fine. But that's it.>
And if I do have room to add more fish, how many and what kind could I add comfortably?
<Do read up about what Mollies need, and then ask your question again once you've short-listed some species that get on with Mollies.>
2. The two mollies I have now are active and eat well, so I'm assuming their freshwater (with no aquarium salt) environment is ok,
<Don't bank on it. It's a crap shoot. Simple as that.>
since I have the two ADF's....is this true?
<Not true at all. Mollies and Frogs are poor choices for tankmates.>
3. I use a turkey baster to feed my ADF's at the bottom of the tank, and it still seems like they don't eat that much. How much should I expect to see them eating?
<Not a huge amount, but easily enough ever second day to slightly round out their bellies. Wet-frozen bloodworms are ideal "starter" foods. Once settled they eat a wide range of things, but variety is important, and dried foods should be used sparingly.>
4. Does water conditioner or AmmoLock ever cause pH readings to be off?
<Shouldn't do this, no.>
My pH fell from around 7 to between 5 and 6 after doing a 50% water change (the ammonia level in my tank had spiked) but my fish seem ok and that was like, 2 wks ago. Should I put some pH conditioner in there as well? I read that messing with pH while a tank is cycling can cause more harm than good.
Thank you very much for your time!-Michelle
<Do read about the needs of these:
Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Mollies  1/28/11
Thank you for your response!
<Glad to help.>
I'm sorry for asking so many questions; I'm new at this, and I'm getting so much conflicting information its difficult to sort through.
<Odd. The needs of Mollies, re: their preference for brackish water, is actually very well known and stated in every book I can think of. While some web sites might suggest otherwise, it's as well to remember the Internet is a hugely unreliable source of information. Always review carefully who says what and why. A retailer will tell you many things, but remember he/she is trying to sell you something too'¦ some retailers are wonderfully honest people, but others, a bit less so.>
So, I plan to separate my ADF's and my mollies; I purchased another small tank today for the ADF's.
<Do read up on the needs of these. Very small tanks, less than 5 gallons, aren't worth using.>
My question now is: What is the best way to go about transferring the frogs into the new tank?
<Divide the existing water out 50/50 between the new tank and the old tank. Move the frogs and Mollies into each tank. Top up both with dechlorinated water. In the case of the Mollies, I strongly recommend adding at least 2 grammes of marine aquarium salt mix per litre of water. Although splitting water does nothing to move bacteria between the two tanks, it will minimise shock through temperature and water chemistry changes.>
My original tank is still cycling, so the pH levels are a little low and the ammonia levels are unstable.
<Salt will help detoxify the nitrite, and this will help the Mollies immensely.>
Should I use some water from the original tank to transfer them into, or should I start over completely and begin cycling this new tank, then put the frogs in once its done cycling?
<You will need to divide the mature filter media between the two tanks. Around 50/50. Done that way, both tanks will be instantly mature. Top up both filters with new media, and that's that! Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Mollies, Aq. salts (FW) f'
Hi! Thanks for being so helpful...a little update and a couple more questions :)'¦.. I put the frogs in a 5 gal tank of their own. Now I'm trying to get the water right in the molly tank. I bought sea salt for it, but PetSmart told me to NOT use sea salt, to use aquarium salt instead.
<What do you mean by "sea salt"? Marine aquarium salt is precisely what you want. Sea salt used for cooking is not. As for generic "aquarium salt" as you'd use in a FRESHWATER aquarium to treat Whitespot is adequate but less useful. Your pet shop clerk is correct you don't want to use cooking sea salt, but absolutely wrong about using marine aquarium salt.>
So I put aquarium salt in my tank...it came in big chunks so I just put the correct amount of tablespoons in the tank, thinking the crystals would dissolve over time.
<No! Do not add salt this way! NEVER, EVER add salt directly to the aquarium.>
So, now how do I get the aquarium salt out to put sea salt in?
<You don't need to.>
Am I going to have to take out the gravel substrate and clean it or should I just wait a little while for the salt to dissolve completely then add sea salt to my water changes?
<Let's start again. Attend carefully! What you want is marine aquarium salt, for example Reef Crystals or Instant Ocean. PetSmart may even have their own generic brand. Ask the clerk for the salt used in marine reef tanks. That's the stuff! A small box shouldn't cost more than $5-10. Now, go home, and weigh out on kitchen scales precisely 5 grammes. That's how much you add to each litre of water IN A BUCKET. It should be a bit under one level teaspoon (which should hold about 6 grammes of marine salt mix). If your bucket holds 15 litres of water, then you add 15 x 5 = 75 grammes. Stir into the water until it's all dissolved. Add that to your aquarium with each water change. So if you take out 15 litres per water change, you add 15 litres of the water and salt mix. If you need to work in non-metric units, the concentration we're doing here is 0.65 ounces per US gallon. It's really very simple. Every time you take some water out, you replace that missing water with a new bucket of water to which JUST THE RIGHT amount of salt has been added FOR THAT BUCKET not the whole tank. Do that, and the water should stay very slightly brackish, about SG 1.002 if you have a hydrometer (well worth getting, a cheap glass one costs $5). If you need to, print this e-mail off, show it to the store clerk, and have them choose the salt mix and the hydrometer for you. Marine aquarium salt mix is BETTER than "aquarium" salt because it contains minerals that raise hardness and steady the pH, both essential to long-term success with Mollies. Hope this clarifies things. Cheers, Neale.>

African dwarf frogs.... sys., comp.   11/25/10
I already have an established 10 gallon that my little buddies stay in now, but I am seeding a 55 gallon tank right now (how long might this take).
<Moving gravel from an old tank to a new one speeds things up a bit, but not dramatically. Moving live filter media from an old tank to a new tank dramatically speeds things up, and if you move enough live media, enough to at least half-fill the new filter, you can add livestock right away. I'd still recommend you add stock very carefully, feed sparingly, and use a nitrite test kit every couple of days just to make sure everything has worked.>
I used some of the bacteria pellets out of the 10's filter into the 55's and put an old filter media and some rocks from the 10-55, I am also using the cycle start stuff in liquid.
<This latter is fairly useless.>
I added some fish food and 2 gallons of water from 10 gallon tank to help create ammonia).
I have 2 Kuhli loaches, 2 African dwarf frogs, 2 male platies, 3 female guppies, 1 male guppy and two Cory cats.
<55 gallons will be very generous for these! Think seriously about upping their numbers though. Half a dozen Kuhli Loaches and Corydoras would be a great start, plus bigger groups of Platies and Guppies (at least twice as many females and males) would be nice, too.>
As soon as I get the tank finished cycling I will be receiving a nice sized Pleco.
<I would NOT do this. A Common Plec will turn a beautiful 55 gallon tank into a stinking mess. These fish are VERY DIRTY and there are NO good reasons to add one to this aquarium. Instead, look at the Bristlenose Plec (Ancistrus spp.). These are smaller -- 12 cm/5 inches -- and much cleaner.
They also remove algae much MUCH better than Common Plecs. Plus, in a tank this size, you could have a male and female Bristlenose, and before long they'd spawn and you'd very likely spot baby catfish in this tank. They are quite easy to breed, and the fathers are so good at looking after their babies that a few will survive even in community tanks.>
I am running Fluval filters on both my tanks the one on the smaller tank (which will become breeding tank) goes up to a 30 gallon and the one on the bigger (which will become the regular tank) does 50 gallons (fish store said will be fine because I have some huge rocks in the tank which displaces a lot of water. Both will have live plants which includes hogworth
<Hogwort? Croton capitatus? This isn't an aquatic plant. Take it out.>
(do you know of a similar plant because I found out I am allergic to this one, causes itching and redness exactly where the plant touches me), water sprite, and java moss.
<Do read WWM re: aquatic plants. Many, many options.
Avoid non-aquatics, and choose hardy species that don't require anything fancy in terms of lighting or substrate. Floating Indian Fern is perhaps the best all-around species for adding greenery to the top, while
Vallisneria, Java Fern, Anubias, and Cryptocoryne wendtii are very undemanding plants for the bottom of the tank.
I need suggestion on other fish to keep with these guys, crustaceans that would be fine with them, and other plant ideas. I know I can not keep ghost shrimp because the frogs eat them.
<Cherry Shrimps are well worth trying out, and get along fine with Dwarf African Frogs. But shrimps and indeed frogs shouldn't be kept with substantially larger fish.>
Would any of these fish be ok with them: Siamese algae eater,
<Yes; but this is a schooling species.>
red tail shark,
<Best avoided.>
dwarf gorami,
honey gorami (my husband thinks that all gorami's would be too aggressive for the guppies and others),
<Honey Gouramis aren't at all aggressive, but they must have soft, acidic water to last long, and that would kill Platies and Guppies. Instead, look at Banded Gouramis (Colisa fasciata) and Thick-Lipped Gouramis (Colisa labiosa), both of which are much hardier than any of the other small gourami species.>
German blue rams,
<Useless. Requires very warm, very soft, very acidic water. Even more difficult to maintain than the Honey Gourami. But the Bolivian Ram (Mikrogeophagus altispinosus) is much hardier. Cichlids are territorial though, and can/will harass small frogs, shrimps, etc.>
wresting half beak.
<Potentially, but they do have very specific needs in terms of diet and general care.
Are all Danios,
<Can be good, but schooling fish, and in groups of less than 6 tend to be bullies. Also need quite cool water, no warmer than 25 C/77 F.>
<Depends on the species. Things like Tiger Barbs will be too nippy in a system like this one. But Five-Banded Barbs might work well, as would Cherry Barbs.>
<Again, varies widely, from species that are peaceful and hardy (e.g., the X-ray Tetra Pristella maxillaris) through to ones that are either nippy (e.g., Serpae Tetra) or difficult to maintain thanks to water chemistry
requirements or poor quality stock (e.g., Neons).>
and mollies if I understand right.
<Mollies are quite demanding, and best kept in a tank designed specifically for them. Read:
Do also see my article on Mollies in the current issue of TFH Magazine.>
This is my first time doing a community tank. I wanted a choice of great variety instead of just having a couple of cichlids in a tank.
<Understandable. But let me give you some advice. When placing small fish in a big tank, there's a temptation to add "two of everything" like you're stocking Noah's Ark. Don't do this. Without goodly numbers, many fish are shy, neurotic, sickly, or badly behaved. Such an aquarium won't be any fun.
Instead pick out 3-4 species you really like, and keep big groups of them. Twelve Platies will look much better than three Guppies, three Platies, three Swordtails and three Mollies. You'll see more natural social
behaviour, and if you have enough females, the males will display without fighting too seriously. Likewise a big group of six or ten Bronze Corydoras will school together nicely and as they explore the bottom of the tank they'll look like a platoon of little green army guys. It's really very cute. Again, two Cherry Shrimps will simply hide, but twenty will clamber about the plants in a big swarm, and put on a much better show.>
Feel free to list any fish, crustacean, or anything that would be great.
<Cheers, Neale.>

African Dwarf Frogs, sys., tankmates  8/29/10
Hi there!
First, I'd like to thank you in advance for any help you give.
<No problems.>
My daughter would like a couple of African Dwarf frogs. I see on your site that you suggest 6 gallons or more. The tank dimensions you mention are 8 x 8 x 24 inches. I was considering a Marineland Eclipse 6, which is
Overall: 16" long x 9 1/2" wide x 15" high
Front: 16" long. Tapers to 13" long in the back.
<It's a 6 gallon tank, yes. But it's deep rather than broad, and since frogs mostly crawl along the bottom, it's far from the ideal shape.>
Would that be okay?
<Wouldn't be my first choice. Viable, I'm sure, but only 5 out of 10 in terms of frog-friendliness.>
I have other fish tanks, so I know about cycling, but frogs are new to me and I'd like to do right by them.
<Really, look for something long and low. Need only be 6-8 inches deep. The frogs aren't good swimmers, and they like tanks where they can easily swim up to the top, gulp some air, and swim back down again.>
Love your site, very informative!
Are there any suitable tank mates for them in the six gallon?
<Frogs and more frogs! You can also keep them with Cherry Shrimps quite successfully, as well as small, harmless snails such as Nerite Snails. I wouldn't go out of my way with Apple Snails because these are difficult to keep alive for any length of time, and when they die -- and they usually do die within a few months to a year -- they mess up water quality terribly.
But Colombian Ramshorn Snails would be okay, though these eat plants.>
You mention a 6 gallon being suitable for 3 or 4 frogs, but if there are only 2 frogs what could you suggest I add? A snail? Or is just the two frogs the best way to go?
<I'd get 2-3 frogs, maybe half a dozen Cherry Shrimps, and perhaps one Colombian Ramshorn. But that's it.>
Thanks again for your help!
Kind regards,
<Have fun! Cheers, Neale.>
Re: African Dwarf Frogs
Wonderful! Thanks for your quick response!
Kind regards,
<Happy to help. Enjoy your froggies. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: African Dwarf Frogs    9/1/10

So sorry, one last question (I think!). Do they like to hide?
<Yes, especially at the surface under floating plants with long, feathery roots. Indian Fern is ideal. You'll see that sometimes they "bask" at the surface with their snouts above the waterline. They don't really go into caves very much.>
Would plants be good enough, or do they need some sort of a cave?
<Just lots of plants would be better. You might include one small cave if you wanted, but I wouldn't expect the frogs to use it all that much. They prefer to hide in the undergrowth at the bottom of the tank, or floating plants at the top.>
I've looked around and the only things I seem to be able to find are either too big, or look like they may somehow get stuck in. Thanks again!
Kind regards,
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>

ADF cannibalism? 7/13/10
Hi, we just got back from a 3 day vacation and couldn't find one of our two dwarf frogs. Upon looking at the bottom of the tank we found just the head and part of the spine of the frog. Can one frog eat another? Thanks!
<No. Frogs cannot chew. All they can do is swallow foods whole. It is likely the other frog died for some reason, and snails in the tank simply stripped the carcass. Starvation is a common problem with Dwarf Frogs. Do read:
Cheers, Neale.>
Re: cannibalism 7/13/10
We don't have snails in the tank unless they are microscopic.
<Ah, then simple "microbial activity" -- bacteria, amoebas, and other small things in the tank.>
Thanks for your response and suggested reading!
<Happy to help. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Need some advise... Not mixing ADF/ACFs  3/2/10
Hi, I would like to add more frogs to my tank I currently have 2 African albino clawed frogs both males and wanted to add 2 African dwarf females, 1 African albino clawed female, and 1 African dwarf male; would that be a bad decision? Can I mix them so rapidly with out any conflict or any 1 frog feeling out of place or invaded?
<This is a REALLY BAD idea. For a start, Xenopus laevis requires cooler water (around 20 C) than Hymenochirus spp (around 25 C). Plus, Xenopus laevis is incredibly predatory, and will eat anything it can catch. Any Hymenochirus frogs you add to this aquarium will simply be eaten. Cheers, Neale.>

Temporary home for dwarf frogs... Sys., incomp. with RES, GF...    1/31/2010
I have a 90 gal freshwater tank that I am going to treat with medications not compatible with my African dwarf frogs so I need to move them for up to a week. I have 3 other tanks I could use and wonder which is best or
should I put them in a tank by themselves?
1. 20 gal with a 2" red eared slider, two Gourami's and a 3" albino red tailed shark ( close to the same temp)
<No! Amphibians and reptiles rarely mix well together.>
2. 20 gal planted with one female Betta and a small Pleco (3deg warmer)
3. 29 gal with several goldfish (2deg cooler)
<The middle one or the third one, provided it wasn't cooler than, say, 22 degrees C. To be honest, I'd use a floating breeding trap if I had one, and would keep the Dwarf Frogs in there while in either of the two temporary
aquaria. Since this will only be for a week, the lack of swimming space won't be much of an issue. Furthermore, this would make it easier to remove them afterwards.>
I would greatly appreciate your thoughts.
<Cheers, Neale.>

Concerned about my African dwarf frog... Bitten by RES  1/14/10
Hello, I have a problem with my African dwarf frog. I have had these 3 African dwarf frogs for almost a year, and one of them has this "bubble" on him, growing bigger in place of where a tail would be.
<I see this>
We noticed it starting to form a few days ago, and it has grown a bit bigger. Today, the end of the "bubble" is bloody. I am very worried he will die, and I can't figure out what it is. Most of this morning, he has been out of the water almost non stop.
<Leave this animal there. It will rejoin/go back in the water when it wants, needs to>
Every so often I pour water on him so he won't die. He was like freaking out earlier, very hyper and jumping all over and not wanting to stay in the water at all. Have you ever heard anything like this?
<Yes, have seen these sorts of sores from physical injuries before>
I thought it could be something like the "red leg" that is described on your website, but still nothing has matched what is going on with this little guy. What could I do to help him??
<Mmm, need to remove the cause of the trauma...>
Also, the "bubble" is bigger in person than how it looks in the picture.
The frogs are kept in a 10 gallon aquarium, and it is filled half way with water. There are two red ear sliders
<... No! This is the root/cause of the problem... Read here:
in the aquarium with the 3 frogs. It is a filtered tank, and has two heat bulbs in the lid.
Thank you for your time
<Need a submersible heater and to NOT be placed with turtles. Bob Fenner>

Re: Concerned about my African dwarf frog   1/14/10
Thank you very much. That helps to hear your input. I did think that could have been a possibility of getting bitten, but it just didn't really look like a bite mark when it was first forming. I will figure something out with separating the turtles from the frogs.
<Ahh! A partition may work temporarily... the RES really need their own, much larger system. See WWM... BobF>

Neolamprologus & Hymenochirus 12/12/09
I am wondering if I could put an African dwarf frog with a shell dweller (Neolamprologus) together.
<Not a chance.>
I understand that the dweller is aggressive, but I'm just wondering. Also, do you know where I can find the shell dweller at a store (not online, I feel horrible when they send them) like PetSmart or Petco??
<Gosh, you'll get happier, healthier fish mail order from a dealer that specialises in cichlids than from a generic pet shop without any cichlid expertise at all. Any halfway decent aquarium shop should be able to order in Neolamprologus multifasciatus and the other commonly traded species.>
Thank you,
P.S Thank you very much for featuring Neolamprologus in the aquarium stocking page, it's a perfect fish for my tank!! :)
<Glad to have been helpful. They are very cool fish. Cheers, Neale.>  

ADF's and ACF's, sys., incomp. RMF's go  -- 12/08/09
hi, I've read a lot on your site but yet to find answer. I recently bought that Frog-o-sphere from Brookstone.
<What? http://www.brookstone.com/Frog-O-Sphere-frogs.html
I'd always enjoyed browsing their store, online, in circulars on airplanes... Till now! Unfiltered, unheated... Ridiculous and cruel>
I found out how awful that setup is for them. I bought a 3 gallon tank with filter and heater, my temp is about
82. originally there was 2 ADF's, one went missing. did the other one eat him?
<Assuredly not. Most likely it "got out" and perished on the floor>
I have gravel at the bottom is that bad??
<Mmm, no...>
also I have fake plants and a bamboo plant. I added and ACF to the tank,
<Yikes! The latter (Xenopus laevis) is NOT compatible... will eat ACFs. Needs to be moved out to its own system>
the local pet store didn't seem to think that was a problem but I'm not sure. The ADF is always hiding and rarely are they interactive. is this safe for the 2 different frogs to live?
<No. Please read here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

ADF's and ACF's. Neale's turn  -- 12/08/09
hi, I've read a lot on your site but yet to find answer. I recently bought that Frog-o-sphere from Brookstone. I found out how awful that setup is for them.
<Indeed. Almost everything at Brookstone is wildly overpriced for what it is, even though it's a great fun store to visit. I quickly Googled this product, and was amused that on the Brookstone site they actually have a letter regarding the hate mail they've obviously received, pointing out that they think it's a great product.
If a company has to defend a product *before you even buy the thing* that's a pretty good sign it's a terrible product. And it is a terrible product. I don't need the marketing department crossing their hearts and telling me otherwise. The golden rule here is never, ever buy a pet from a store that doesn't specialise in that particular kind of animal. When it comes to frogs, you can't go wrong buying a book first, and then buying the frog.
Failing that, e-mail us, and we'll do our best to tell you what you'll need to buy.>
I bought a 3 gallon tank with filter and heater, my temp is about 82.
<Still too small. I cannot stress to strongly how important it is to maximise water volume. A 5-gallon tank would be marginal, and to be honest, I'd recommend something around 8 gallons (I'm thinking of a 24" by 8" by 8" system here). That's the sort of tank you can decorate and rely on to provide good conditions. Frittering money away on piece of plastic garbage after another isn't the way to go.>
originally there was 2 ADF's, one went missing. did the other one eat him?
<Died and decayed, or maybe jumped out.>
I have gravel at the bottom is that bad??
<I'd recommend smooth silica sand which you can buy from the garden centre very inexpensively. Cheap, chemically inert, and frogs love it!>
also I have fake plants and a bamboo plant.
<"Lucky Bamboo" plants aren't really aquatic and don't belong here. Among other things, there's no guarantee they're grown in a frog-safe way, e.g., without the use of pesticides. Again, anything sold as a "gift" is usually garbage, because they're being sold to people who haven't a clue what they're buying (no disrespect meant here). Ideal plants for a frog habitat would be reliable, shade-tolerant epiphytes (plants attached to bogwood) such as Anubias and Java fern. A clump of floating Indian fern would also be useful, providing resting places near the surface for the frogs and inhibiting any "kamikaze" tendencies to jump out.>
I added and ACF to the tank, the local pet store didn't seem to think that was a problem but I'm not sure. The ADF is always hiding and rarely are they interactive. is this safe for the 2 different frogs to live?
<Do read here:
These are the basics. You're keeping one of the two Hymenochirus species.><<Yikes! Neale... the "other" species is Xenopus here! RMF>>
<Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Fish selection.... (algae eaters, why you don't need a FW clean-up crew), Now ADF comp.   11/20/09
For some reason African dwarf frogs have caught my interest. Would these frogs be compatible with 10 zebra Danios and 1 rainbow shark in a 30 gallon tank? If so, how many? Will these frogs do anything to my water quality?
Lastly, will they add any excitement to the layers of my aquarium or do they just lay around?
<Hello again. In theory this might work, but it's worth mentioning that Frogs are slow feeders, and depending on the Shark-minnow you have, may or may not get enough to eat. The Danios aren't competition in this regard.
Furthermore, they're easily damaged, and if your Shark-minnow is aggressive, they might be battered about. In short, this wouldn't be my first choice for bottom feeders, though if the tank was adequately planted
and the substrate was nice and smooth (ideally, smooth silica sand), then half a dozen Hymenochirus might be fun additions. Do read here:
Cheers, Neale.>

Frog and fish compatibility   7/10/09
Hi crew, I have been doing some research to see if African Dwarf Frogs are OK in a tank with Corys and angels but get conflicting answers. I think it would be neat to have 2 in my tank but certainly would not put them with fish if that would hurt them or the fish. Please let me know what you think
<Wouldn't bother. Corydoras will compete for food with the frogs, since both eat the same things, but Corydoras feed more quickly. Angels can, will nip at these tiny amphibians. The majority of Dwarf Frogs kept with fish either starve or get damaged. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: frog and fish compatibility   7/10/09
Thanks Neale, good to know. I would never want one to get hurt because of something I could have avoided.
<Happy to help. Do consider things like shrimps and dwarf crayfish (Cambarellus spp.) when hunting for oddballs in community tanks; generally work much better, assuming the fish aren't overtly aggressive or predatory.
Cheers, Neale.>

Frogs in the Aquarium 4/11/2009
Hello Crew, hope all is well with you. I have a question, please. I was in a L.F.S. a couple of days ago just looking and saw a small frog in several of the freshwater tanks.
<Hymenochirus spp; these are small tropical frogs related to the much larger Xenopus aquatic frogs you may have seen/used in labs. Basic care is similar to Xenopus, except they're tropical rather than subtropical
animals, and being much smaller (barely an inch or so in body length) they're easily damaged by fish, crayfish etc. Feeding is a hassle because they feed slowly, and while they will consume a variety of things including wet frozen bloodworms and special frog pellets, most fish will eat those things ten times faster than the frogs!>
I wanted to ask about it but there was no one around in the fish department so after a long wait with no service I left. I wanted to find out what kinds of frogs are compatible with the aquarium and out of those which are the best as far as easiness to keep and not aggressive.
<I'd recommend keeping them alone, or if you must mix them with fish, choose very small, surface-dwelling species that won't cause problems re: aggression, feeding. Hatchetfish, small Danio species, Endler guppies and so on would make sense. Snails and cherry shrimps would also work well, and perhaps very docile benthic fish species like Kuhli loaches and pygmy Corydoras and Whiptail species, e.g. Corydoras hastatus, Rineloricaria parva.>
Also wondering if the frogs would be bothered by any other type of fish as well as what types of food the frogs eat and if they can get to eat before other fish steal their food.
<Yes, they're easily bothered by fish, and if damaged, prone to bacterial infections similar to Finrot. While some folks keep them in community tanks, the reality is that a fair proportion of the frogs kept this way
either starve or get damaged.>
Thank you so much for all you do and have a great Easter!
<You too!>
<Cheers, Neale.>

Newcomer in the aquatic world... Betta and Hymenochirus comp.   8/26/08 I had a quick question about the community my girlfriend and I should build in our fish tank. It's a 10 gal. tank and we've been doing a lot of research on what kind of fish would get along with our African dwarf frog we've had for about a week now. We already have an apple snail, and other than the java moss we have for the frog, it's a pretty empty tank. We've been thinking about a beta <Betta...> fish but most of the websites we've visited have mixed opinions with some saying betas make great tank mates and other saying that the beta would eat or beat up the frog. Would placing a beta in the community be a good idea? Thank you. <Should be fine with an ADF. Bob Fenner>

African dwarf frog... comp.   4/19/08 Hi Crew: I love your website and I am hoping you can help me make a crucial decision. I have had Ferdinand, my beloved ADF for almost 4 years. He made a cross-country trip with us when we moved from Michigan to Texas three years ago, and he's doing great in his little 3-gallon tank. About a month ago, I purchased a lovely 46 gallon tank, and I have 3 small tiger barbs (I know...I know...aggressive breed, but PetSmart didn't tell me when I bought them!), 5 male guppies, 4 rasboras, 5 black skirts and 4 platies (2 mickies and a twinbar). Everyone is healthy and well, and the water has cycled completely (according to a local fish specialty shop....NOT PetSmart). I had 8 Neons that of course died after a week....boo. Part of the reason I got the tank was for my personal pleasure, and part of it was for Ferdinand to have a larger, happier, more populated home. Now that things are established in the "big house", I'm simply terrified to move him! The water almost matches his water in the chemical sense. Is this a safe move? Am I delusional? Should I take the risk and move him? He had a house mate who died about a year ago, but he's been perfectly healthy all along. I just want him to have a great life. Thoughts? Anne in Texas <Hello Ann. Hymenochirus frogs are simply too small and too vulnerable to be kept with fish, especially fin-nippers like Black Skirt Tetras (Gymnocorymbus ternetzi) and Tiger Barbs (Puntius tetrazona). Putting the poor little frog in with those badly behaved fishes would be cruel! So leave the little guy where he is. Hymenochirus do best kept in their own tanks or perhaps with dwarf shrimps and novelty snails like Nerites. Do also remember that both Black Skirts and Tiger Barbs nip not just frogs but also Gouramis, Angelfish, Bettas, male Fancy Guppies, and really anything that is either slow or equipped with long fins. They AREN'T community fish, and shouldn't be treated as such. Cheers, Neale.>

ADF comp.   7/10/07 I am just getting started at keeping fish. I was wondering if a ADF was good for a ten gallon tank. The fish in the tank are 6 small catfish and a algae eater. Also how do I know if it is a male or female. Alex Jackson <What are the catfish? Corydoras? They should be fine with an African Dwarf Frog, assuming the frog gets enough to eat. I personally wouldn't mix them though. Frogs deserve their own aquarium and rarely, if ever, do as well kept in fish tanks. No idea what an "algae eater" is. If you mean Gyrinocheilus aymonieri, the "Chinese algae eater" that isn't from China and doesn't eat much algae, then no, you can't mix that with anything. It is one of the worst-tempered fish in the hobby, as well as being far too large (around 30 cm long) for a 10 gallon tank. If on the other hand you mean some sort of Pleco, likely Pterygoplichthys spp., then while it will probably ignore the frog, it is FAR too big (40 cm long) for a 10 gallon tank. Hope this helps, Neale.>

Albino African frog question... Rationale for requiring proper English   -- 05/07/07 all it says is to fix my english. my english is fine thank you. thanks for all the help <Hello Heather, as a former schoolteacher, I'm going to bite... The problem with your message is the poor grammar (e.g., "cant" instead of "can't"); the absence of capital letters (e.g., "i" instead of "i"); and the use of non-words (e.g., "wanna" instead of "want to"). Now, while you may not be bothered by this, in no way is it proper English. Ergo, anyone who wants to answer your question will have to read and re-read the thing to understand precisely what you mean. Needless to say, since none of us here are paid to answer these questions, and we get dozens every day, we're going to spend time answering questions that are easy to read and easy to understand. Yours is neither. Hence it gets dumped on the 'return to sender' pile. Now, for what it's worth, the leopard puffers are killing off your fish and frogs, and they will continue to do so until there are only the two puffers left, and then the biggest one will kill the smallest one. Incidentally, your "leopard puffers" could be a number of different fish but most probably Tetraodon fluviatilis or Tetraodon nigriventris if they are some combination of green and yellow, or else Tetraodon palembangensis is more red/brown. Tetraodon fluviatilis and Tetraodon nigriventris grow to about 15 cm and need brackish water conditions (around 50% seawater) whereas Tetraodon palembangensis is even bigger but is at least a true freshwater species. Regardless, totally and utterly incompatible with the fishes/frogs you have, and ultimately needing a very large (for two specimens, 50 gallons+), well maintained aquarium. Cheers, Neale>

Re: albino African frog question... Rationale for requiring proper English   -- 05/07/07 honestly if i knew i was going to graded i would've cared alittle more about my punctuation and capitalization. i just wanted to know why my frogs died but thanks for being an ass. sorry if the lack of capitals bother you i'm sure you'll get over it. <Hello again, Heather. Presentation is everything. If you haven't learned that yet, then it's about time. Sloppy writing suggests a sloppy mind, and I'm sure you don't want people to think about you in those terms. By the way, feel free to say "thank you" to me for spending fifteen minutes of my time figuring out the problems with your aquarium and offering advice to remedy the situation. Oh, and I'm pretty sure I'm not the one here looking like some sort of diminutive equine. <<Heeee! RMF>> Sincerely, Neale> Re: African frog Q  -- 05/08/07 Hello Robert, Surely that should be "Heeee HAAWWW"? Cheers, Neale <You're really cracking me up Neale! B!>

Mollies & Dwarf frogs compatible?   3/8/07 The African Dwarf frogs are cute. Before I consider a purchase, just a quick question - I have about 20 mollies and noticed they enjoy chasing & playing with each other. I am concerned wondering if mollies (and a few bottom feeders as Corydoras in the tank) will be nice to the frogs, e.g.. will not nip their little webbed feet when floating on the top? I want to make sure I never mix any incompatible species and wondering what your opinions are. Thank you so very much for your time! SK <Generally these three groups/species do get along fine... though I would like to state that neither Corydoras genus catfishes nor ADFs "like" salt/s in their water... and many folks use such with Mollienesia species. Bob Fenner>

Re: Mollies & Dwarf frogs compatible?  -- 03/09/07 I may try a couple of the dwarf frogs. In my tank I have never added salts. <Good> All but two of the Mollienesia fish I have were born in that very tank. <Ahh, the best means of acquisition> No salts added, though the dip stick reads as me having very hard water - I use the aqua safe dechlorinating products.  Does hard water, aqua salts, and a brackish environment correlate in any way? <Yes... the harder the water, the more total dissolved solids... many of which are salts (ionic combinations of metals and non-metals...)... so much concentration of these solids in a given volume of water is what brackish is. Bob Fenner>

African dwarf frogs  12/12/05 WWM Crew, I wondering what you guys think about putting African dwarf frogs with dwarf puffers. <Definitely not... they will be harassed/nipped.> or the frogs in a snail breeding aquarium. <This sounds more suitable.> thanks <You're welcome.... John>

African Dwarf Frog, tetras, and ghost shrimp gang:   1/19/07 In separate 5 gallon tank with 4 tetras and 5 ghost shrimp. I understood the ghost shrimp wouldn't mess the biolevel too much, so put them in for clean up (I wanted an algae eater but didn't want anyone messing with the frog - and I knew the tank would be too small for a growing algae eater). <Good choice> First question, WHAT CAN I FEED THE FROG THAT THE OTHERS WON'T TAKE FIRST?! <Mmm, nothing> Ha, those ghost shrimp are so good at taking food even if it is right in front of the frog (one even tried to take a piece of meat from the frog's mouth!). Oh yeah, the frog is most likely male and is smaller than a quarter. I've managed to feed him dried-bloodworms (by hand), frozen brine shrimp (by hand), and ground turkey (by hand). I recently crafted a little feeder wand just for this sucker (and the salamanders) and wanted to see if any other alternatives exist. I know we aren't supposed to feed them but once a day (or two) and I've seen some people's frogs online turn to little porkers. <Yes... with shortened lifespans> I understand that they are naturally supposed to be slim since they usually skip meals so how much should I feed regularly.  I wanted to try the sinking pellets but didn't want to count on them since I know the ghost shrimp will eat anything they can grab. <Mmm, won't likely eat pellets, prepared dried foods period>  

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