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Thread: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

  1. #1
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    Default Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Hello everyone....

    First off, I am new to this website, so I hope I put this post in the correct section... sorry if I didn't. I am also very new to frog/toad keeping, and currently have two American toads and one gray tree frog.

    I was recently on vacation for three weeks while my neighbor took care of my animals, and I just got home yesterday evening. The gray tree frog (I call him Richard) is very small, as he only just left the tadpole stage less than a month ago. He is only large enough for flightless fruit flies (or pinheads, but they aren't sold at stores near me). This is the first time I have used fruit fly cultures, and because of this I made a very large error, which I feel extremely guilty about. While I was away, the material on the bottom of the fly containers seems to have spoiled, as it is now a brown fluid. Even so, the flies continued to reproduce. However, without the nutritious material, the flies I saw when I got home were about half the size of the healthy flies, and were a sickly pale color, with light pink eyes. It looks similar to albinism, in a way. Anyway, with the flies not getting the proper nutrients, neither was Richard (Even though I left instructions to dust the flies with a nutrition supplement powder twice a week). He had gotten his adult coloration while I was gone, but hasn't grown at all, and in fact, he looks almost smaller. He doesn't appear emaciated, and still acts healthy.

    Last night, I found him some small, fat silkworms to eat, which he seemed to greatly enjoy, and seemed to look better this morning. I plan on getting him new flies ASAP, and I think he will be able to pull through. But I was wondering what I can do to help his growth/recovery, other than the supplement powder. I was unable to find any information in my many Google searches, but one of them lead me to this site. Any advice on what I can do to increase his nutrition intake will be appreciated...

    Thanks

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  3. #2
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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Phoenix worms are a super food high in calcium and protein and easy to digest or small wax worms

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    The lighting is critical to food digestion too

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Will definitely try those, thanks! And what type of lighting? He is currently in a temporary enclosure, and I plan on getting him a nice tall tank soon, so I will get some lights then.

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Uva and uvb one of the lights is needed for digestion and the other is so the body can absorb the nutrients I go by what my vet says always. Never hesitate to call an exotics doc to really get the answers . I'm not an expert so anything I chime in on is from an experience I've been through and my vet.

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Alright, thanks again

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Actually, I think the general consensus is nocturnal frogs don't need UV lighting at all... I don't use it and have no problems with greys and whites. But you need not worry about the small (sickly) flies, they are just babies! If you feed him a bunch of them he'll fasten back up in a few days (I'm raising some grays from tads myself right now, and had the same issue as you, ran out of flies). Flies are impossible to gut load, but you can make a new culture out of real fruit if you like. The important thing is to dust them as often as possible with calcium, and once in a while with vitamins. Don't use the vitamins every time or the fat solubles can build up to toxic levels... Good luck, and let us know how it goes!
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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Thanks for the help! It would make sense that the smaller flies are just the young ones, I have a tenancy to panic about nothing haha... But I got him some new flies yesterday, and he has seemed to already gain weight over night, and acts more energetic. I also plan on ordering him some phoenix worms when the weather gets a bit cooler... thanks again!

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    You may have just been at the end of your culture My greys did not digets phoenix worms well, they came out the other end, all whole, and some alive. My darts haven't had a problem with them, but I will not use them again for the greys. If you want to look into alternative feeders, try to convince him to eat chopped up nightcrawlers. Otherwise, dusted fruit flies are sufficient until he's big enough for crickets

    I do not use uv lighting for my greys, but it is important to make sure that he gets proper supplements then. I use repcal+ vitamin D. http://www.amazon.com/Rep-Cal-Reptil.../dp/B00061UWJM It's important to replace your supplements every 6 months so they do not expire.
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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    I do what my vet says he says lights they get lights I really want to hear a good reason for no lights and sorry about the 4 posts trying to figure out the forum. I would love to understand the otherside of the light issue . Nobody ever gives their reason to not have them

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Uv lights are not required for frogs due to the supplementation of calcium in their diet by the keeper and the fact that most don't receive natural UV in their natural habitat. There have been many studies done on this and they have all come to the same outcome: inconclusive. Couple that with the fact that most keepers who do use UV lighting, use it incorrectly by placing it above glass, which filters out roughly 99% of UVB and about 90% of UVA.

    This has been a debate for a long time. I would suggest that if your vet says it's a requirement, to ask him to provide you with some current data that has come to the conclusion that it is a requirement.

    Please keep in mind that while yes, vets are trained to treat animals, but the most current care techniques are developed and shared by hobbyists, such as those on this forum. Unfortunately, most vets do not have the time, and some just don't have the inclination to keep up on the most current care requirements/techniques.


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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Huh, interesting about them not digesting the phoenix worms well, I will have to be on the watch for that... Can always try and feed them to other things if there's issues. I am finding it's somewhat difficult to give him a nice variety in his diet with him being so small, but I guess that's not too big of a deal, as long as he gets enough nutrients... Very new to this, so I tend to worry easily, always afraid I am doing something wrong...

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    I so get I worry too.

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Quote Originally Posted by deranged chipmunk View Post
    Uv lights are not required for frogs due to the supplementation of calcium in their diet by the keeper and the fact that most don't receive natural UV in their natural habitat. There have been many studies done on this and they have all come to the same outcome: inconclusive. Couple that with the fact that most keepers who do use UV lighting, use it incorrectly by placing it above glass, which filters out roughly 99% of UVB and about 90% of UVA.

    This has been a debate for a long time. I would suggest that if your vet says it's a requirement, to ask him to provide you with some current data that has come to the conclusion that it is a requirement.

    Please keep in mind that while yes, vets are trained to treat animals, but the most current care techniques are developed and shared by hobbyists, such as those on this forum. Unfortunately, most vets do not have the time, and some just don't have the inclination to keep up on the most current care requirements/techniques.
    Somewhat true, but bear in mind that the care techniques described on this or other forums are (almost exclusively) anecdotal. They are not backed up by hard data, because the hard data doesn't exist. Such experience is of course valuable, but it's often based on a very few cases - what works for one keeper, or even all experienced keepers, may not work for others, or for less experienced keepers. We're only beginning to scratch the surface of providing scientific evidence to back up (or not) common husbandry practices in herps, both in terms of wild microhabitat data logging efforts and specific studies in captive animals.

    With regards to UV, my way of looking at it is simple; we don't know whether or not it is beneficial in most cases, so why not provide the opportunity for (low levels in most cases) of it? It is of course essential to also provide the opportunity to avoid it. If provided, I've seen some supposedly secretive species seeming to actively "bask" in it. Certainly one recent study in fire-bellied toads suggested uv had benefits beyond supplemented diets.

    If nothing else, appropriate diurnal variation (day, dawn/dusk and night) is almost certainly beneficial to the animals in most cases, and uv-A may be an important part of that.

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Quote Originally Posted by HazelCat View Post
    Thanks for the help! It would make sense that the smaller flies are just the young ones, I have a tenancy to panic about nothing haha... But I got him some new flies yesterday, and he has seemed to already gain weight over night, and acts more energetic. I also plan on ordering him some phoenix worms when the weather gets a bit cooler... thanks again!
    My grays didn't handle Phoenix worms at all. All of them passed through undigested, and one of them passed through still alive.

    Other people here seem to have had similar experiences.
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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    I just nursed my Mrs Bighead back to health with phoenix wax and small horn worms and some of the wax worms came through whole but dead. I guess every frogs different .

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    I have tree frogs

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    Yeah, I will just have to see how they do... if they end up not working well I can always try and feed them to my toads or something.

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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    If feeding phoenix worms poke them with a pin first, and I always crush the head on butter, horn & waxworms just to ensure they don't come out the other end whole. I've had phoenix worms come out whole on my Fowlers & Southern toads. They are more for lizards that have teeth and chew their food.
    Quote Originally Posted by HazelCat View Post
    Yeah, I will just have to see how they do... if they end up not working well I can always try and feed them to my toads or something.
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    Default Re: Underweight Gray Tree Frog, Advice Wanted

    I wondered about poking them with something first, I will definitely do that as well as crushing the head... I mostly got excited about them because they are the right size for this tiny guy, which seems pretty rare... the good sized feeder sold near me are the flies.

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