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    Default Gray tree frog question

    Hi,

    Sorry if this is a repost I am new here and think I might have messed up my first attempt. Anyways my son has a grey tree frog (itís in his room, I take care of it) that I think may be attempting to go into hibernation. We have had it since May and it has always had a great appetite. It would aggressively chase down crickets as well as take them from tongs. Towards the end of August he began to slow down and only ate one or two crickets per week, mostly from the tongs. For the past couple weeks I donít believe he has taken any crickets (maybe one that I canít find in the terrarium). I have started putting crickets in a glass bowl in the tank and have not had any disappear for a the few days I have been doing this. The change in appetite occurred along with a drop in temperature/humidity in our local area (mass). I am unsure as to whether or not I should continue to heat the terrarium or let it stay a bit cooler over the winter months. With the lamp on the tank hits about 80-82F and drops to about 68 at night with the lamp off. The frog is an adult male that was caught during the opening of a neighbors pool. He is housed in a 12x12x18 terrarium with coconut fiber substrate and plenty of stuff to climb/hide in. Diet has been 2-3 crickets 4 or 5 times a week dusted with calcium powder every couple feedings and vitamins once per week. He is still moving around at night and is usually sitting on top of his hide until the lights come on. He also is still visiting his water dish a couple times per week and pooping (solid brown). He looks a bit thinner now than over summer but I wouldnít say heís skinny. I appreciate any advice, thanks!

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    100+ Post Member Larry Wardog's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Np View Post
    Hi,

    Sorry if this is a repost I am new here and think I might have messed up my first attempt. Anyways my son has a grey tree frog (itís in his room, I take care of it) that I think may be attempting to go into hibernation. We have had it since May and it has always had a great appetite. It would aggressively chase down crickets as well as take them from tongs. Towards the end of August he began to slow down and only ate one or two crickets per week, mostly from the tongs. For the past couple weeks I donít believe he has taken any crickets (maybe one that I canít find in the terrarium). I have started putting crickets in a glass bowl in the tank and have not had any disappear for a the few days I have been doing this. The change in appetite occurred along with a drop in temperature/humidity in our local area (mass). I am unsure as to whether or not I should continue to heat the terrarium or let it stay a bit cooler over the winter months. With the lamp on the tank hits about 80-82F and drops to about 68 at night with the lamp off. The frog is an adult male that was caught during the opening of a neighbors pool. He is housed in a 12x12x18 terrarium with coconut fiber substrate and plenty of stuff to climb/hide in. Diet has been 2-3 crickets 4 or 5 times a week dusted with calcium powder every couple feedings and vitamins once per week. He is still moving around at night and is usually sitting on top of his hide until the lights come on. He also is still visiting his water dish a couple times per week and pooping (solid brown). He looks a bit thinner now than over summer but I wouldnít say heís skinny. I appreciate any advice, thanks!
    Hello,
    Sorry to hear about your problem with the gray. It has a good temp and a good setup. It could be a parasite problem so if you can get a poop sample and get it checked by a vet and get the frog looked at that might be your best way to go.

    Until then I would try to use UVB lighting with the frog. I also have a recommendation for the feeders. Offer crickets a feeder look it up on Petco

    Mazuri Better Bug Gutload

    Get Tetrafauna Reptocal and mix this together along with the UVB lighting and a vet visit and you may have your answer.

    Sent from my BKL-L04 using Tapatalk

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Np View Post
    Hi,

    Sorry if this is a repost I am new here and think I might have messed up my first attempt. Anyways my son has a grey tree frog (it’s in his room, I take care of it) that I think may be attempting to go into hibernation. We have had it since May and it has always had a great appetite. It would aggressively chase down crickets as well as take them from tongs. Towards the end of August he began to slow down and only ate one or two crickets per week, mostly from the tongs. For the past couple weeks I don’t believe he has taken any crickets (maybe one that I can’t find in the terrarium). I have started putting crickets in a glass bowl in the tank and have not had any disappear for a the few days I have been doing this. The change in appetite occurred along with a drop in temperature/humidity in our local area (mass). I am unsure as to whether or not I should continue to heat the terrarium or let it stay a bit cooler over the winter months. With the lamp on the tank hits about 80-82F and drops to about 68 at night with the lamp off. The frog is an adult male that was caught during the opening of a neighbors pool. He is housed in a 12x12x18 terrarium with coconut fiber substrate and plenty of stuff to climb/hide in. Diet has been 2-3 crickets 4 or 5 times a week dusted with calcium powder every couple feedings and vitamins once per week. He is still moving around at night and is usually sitting on top of his hide until the lights come on. He also is still visiting his water dish a couple times per week and pooping (solid brown). He looks a bit thinner now than over summer but I wouldn’t say he’s skinny. I appreciate any advice, thanks!
    Your assumption about him trying to cycle through the winter is correct. At your latitude he's going to start moving into his winter cycle right when you said you started noticing his changes. The temperature and humidity should be as close to what you'd have right there in your area during the mid-summer months as you can simulate. If it doesn't typically get to 82 farenheit there you should keep the high end cooler than that. 68 is as low as you should go just to keep him warm enough at night to not push him toward winter sleep.

    Since he wasn't taken into captivity until after his first winter cycle he's now adapted to going into full hibernation/brumation which will make it a little more challenging, but not impossible for you to keep him slightly more active during the fall/winter/early spring months. The main thing to keep in mind is that his habits are attuned to the angle of the moon and the sun throughout the year and you really can't fool him about that without an elaborate conjob like that used to keep chickens laying all winter long. That requires some failrly expensive technical lighting and more to do it right.

    Assuming you're not up for that, here's how you get him to keep from fully brumating this winter:
    The first things are ambient temperature and humidity of his tank. Aside from what you're already doing with that you should mist him with chemical free water, also not distilled water as it leaches the minerals out of their bodies. How fast the tank dries out after each misting should determine how often and how much you mist but daily or every other day should be enough making sure to mist him directly but gently in the process. That'll stimulate him.

    Things to know that differ from hibernation are that in order to brumate they actually eat less and less as you noticed and they also dessicate which is that they dry out almost completely once they find a suitable "hibernaculum"-the place to hibernate, to the point where if you found one outside you'd think it was dead. Misting and providing a bowl of fresh water kept clean regularly will entice him to not try to hide and dry out. I have one Gray who tried to bury himself, dry out and brumate this fall but I dug him out of the potted plant dirt and he's back in the land of the living now good as new. It was a close one.

    When it comes to food he'll still eat only a fraction of the amount and frequency he will eat during fully active seasons so don't let his overall disinterest in food worry you until the sun gets to or past its equinox next spring.

    His activity you describe is a good level to try to keep him at for the winter but if you maitain all these conditions he'll be sleeping for as many as 5 days at a time, sometimes only waking to move or change positions, or take a prolonged soak in the water bowl. When he gets to that point he's good to go for the rest of the winter until the solstice. After the solstice he might start getting very gradually more active. Supplement dusting at the same ratio relative to how much he eats is equally as important as it is during his most active months.

    Hope this all helps.
    KP

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by KP View Post
    Your assumption about him trying to cycle through the winter is correct. At your latitude he's going to start moving into his winter cycle right when you said you started noticing his changes. The temperature and humidity should be as close to what you'd have right there in your area during the mid-summer months as you can simulate. If it doesn't typically get to 82 farenheit there you should keep the high end cooler than that. 68 is as low as you should go just to keep him warm enough at night to not push him toward winter sleep.

    Since he wasn't taken into captivity until after his first winter cycle he's now adapted to going into full hibernation/brumation which will make it a little more challenging, but not impossible for you to keep him slightly more active during the fall/winter/early spring months. The main thing to keep in mind is that his habits are attuned to the angle of the moon and the sun throughout the year and you really can't fool him about that without an elaborate conjob like that used to keep chickens laying all winter long. That requires some failrly expensive technical lighting and more to do it right.

    Assuming you're not up for that, here's how you get him to keep from fully brumating this winter:
    The first things are ambient temperature and humidity of his tank. Aside from what you're already doing with that you should mist him with chemical free water, also not distilled water as it leaches the minerals out of their bodies. How fast the tank dries out after each misting should determine how often and how much you mist but daily or every other day should be enough making sure to mist him directly but gently in the process. That'll stimulate him.

    Things to know that differ from hibernation are that in order to brumate they actually eat less and less as you noticed and they also dessicate which is that they dry out almost completely once they find a suitable "hibernaculum"-the place to hibernate, to the point where if you found one outside you'd think it was dead. Misting and providing a bowl of fresh water kept clean regularly will entice him to not try to hide and dry out. I have one Gray who tried to bury himself, dry out and brumate this fall but I dug him out of the potted plant dirt and he's back in the land of the living now good as new. It was a close one.

    When it comes to food he'll still eat only a fraction of the amount and frequency he will eat during fully active seasons so don't let his overall disinterest in food worry you until the sun gets to or past its equinox next spring.

    His activity you describe is a good level to try to keep him at for the winter but if you maitain all these conditions he'll be sleeping for as many as 5 days at a time, sometimes only waking to move or change positions, or take a prolonged soak in the water bowl. When he gets to that point he's good to go for the rest of the winter until the solstice. After the solstice he might start getting very gradually more active. Supplement dusting at the same ratio relative to how much he eats is equally as important as it is during his most active months.

    Hope this all helps.
    KP
    What I have found is it seems to be different for every specimen. Some grays and toads can go dormant and some can remain active. Most of my toads and my grays are still eating and as active as the summer months. One toad is less active then the rest. So depending on how the animal handles captivity it may not go dormant.

    Also another thing on brumation. So it would not be a true brumation unless the frog is placed in the 30s and more factors I am leaving out for many reasons. But if the frog is not truly chilled it will not brumate it may just go dormant for a short period of time. The dormancy will not cause the frog to want to breed with the cycle being missed. At least for this situation because THC is a different story.

    Just wanted to offer a personal observation from my specimens. I do plan to brumate them at some point but it's a while away from now and is very different from this.

    Sent from my BKL-L04 using Tapatalk

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Np View Post
    Hi,

    Sorry if this is a repost I am new here and think I might have messed up my first attempt. Anyways my son has a grey tree frog (it’s in his room, I take care of it) that I think may be attempting to go into hibernation. We have had it since May and it has always had a great appetite. It would aggressively chase down crickets as well as take them from tongs. Towards the end of August he began to slow down and only ate one or two crickets per week, mostly from the tongs. For the past couple weeks I don’t believe he has taken any crickets (maybe one that I can’t find in the terrarium). I have started putting crickets in a glass bowl in the tank and have not had any disappear for a the few days I have been doing this. The change in appetite occurred along with a drop in temperature/humidity in our local area (mass). I am unsure as to whether or not I should continue to heat the terrarium or let it stay a bit cooler over the winter months. With the lamp on the tank hits about 80-82F and drops to about 68 at night with the lamp off. The frog is an adult male that was caught during the opening of a neighbors pool. He is housed in a 12x12x18 terrarium with coconut fiber substrate and plenty of stuff to climb/hide in. Diet has been 2-3 crickets 4 or 5 times a week dusted with calcium powder every couple feedings and vitamins once per week. He is still moving around at night and is usually sitting on top of his hide until the lights come on. He also is still visiting his water dish a couple times per week and pooping (solid brown). He looks a bit thinner now than over summer but I wouldn’t say he’s skinny. I appreciate any advice, thanks!
    The reason you don't want to encourage captive Gray Tree Frog brumation is that an estimated 50% of the populations of species that do pass the winter months in that condition in the wild don't survive it. It's a natural culling process that I'm pretty sure you don't want to subject your frog to. As I alluded to, your Gray Tree Frog will, if conditions are right, be spending his winters as if he vacationed down to Florida for the fall/winter months.
    KP

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Awesome information everybody thanks for taking the time to write all of that. I have been misting with bottled spring water and using a UVB bulb just forgot to mention them. I will keep the heat going in the tank. Wondering if I should perhaps invest in a fogger to keep him a bit more humid as it dips down pretty far between misting.. I will also keep offering crickets in a dish for him to take. Would it be wise to continue trying to feed with tongs or should I just let him do his thing without the stress of seeing my hand in his face? Thanks again

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Np View Post
    Awesome information everybody thanks for taking the time to write all of that. I have been misting with bottled spring water and using a UVB bulb just forgot to mention them. I will keep the heat going in the tank. Wondering if I should perhaps invest in a fogger to keep him a bit more humid as it dips down pretty far between misting.. I will also keep offering crickets in a dish for him to take. Would it be wise to continue trying to feed with tongs or should I just let him do his thing without the stress of seeing my hand in his face? Thanks again
    You can do both feeding with tongs and let him hunt. Actually a fogger would work great and grays love them. I have a fogger and it's probably the best one for frogs. It lasts long and works very well.

    Look up on Amazon
    Evergreen Pet Supplies Reptile Fogger.

    Sent from my BKL-L04 using Tapatalk

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Np View Post
    Awesome information everybody thanks for taking the time to write all of that. I have been misting with bottled spring water and using a UVB bulb just forgot to mention them. I will keep the heat going in the tank. Wondering if I should perhaps invest in a fogger to keep him a bit more humid as it dips down pretty far between misting.. I will also keep offering crickets in a dish for him to take. Would it be wise to continue trying to feed with tongs or should I just let him do his thing without the stress of seeing my hand in his face? Thanks again
    Happy to help Np.
    The fogger isn't really necessary. You want humidity as if they were out in the woods in the summer, a summer when it rains each day a little but not like a rainforest. The reason over humidifying is potentially harmful is that it promotes the growth of molds and fungi, some of which aren't visible to the eye but are potentially life-threatening to Gray Tree Frogs. The other reason over humidifying can be a problem is that in order to maintain the sticky, tacky quality these frogs need to climb and which is a primary indicator of overall good health, they need to be drier than other species of frogs and they don't dessicate like any aquatic frog will if it's out of water for even a relatively short time. Along with the molds and fungi, and the increased bacterial growth that comes with higher humidity, use of a fogger or over-misting will make it necessary to deep clean their tank far more frequently. For these reasons I recommend against a fogger.

    The most important thing you need for humidity in a Gray Tree Frog habitat is a good sized bowl of water just deep enough for the frog to sit in without floating so it covers about half way up their back. This alone will keep good enough humidity along with a daily misting and it's also how they drink and expel waste water. If you take the time to watch your frog while he sits in the bowl you'll notice him flinching as he sits, this is him expelling waste water and as he does this he takes in the fresher water around his body. Sometimes they'll take a little in through their mouths by holding their lower jaw a little open right at the water level.
    The fact that they're also expelling waste water as they sit in the water makes it necessary to change the water daily when they're using it daily. During the inactive months they'll use it far less but they still need it and whenever you see that he's in it you should change it once he leaves it so its fresh for the next time he comes down to soak.

    As for feeding, hand/tong feeding is fine but don't be worried if he's not interested much during the winter months, he doesn't need to eat very much at all.
    After he's soaked in the water bowl until he's had his fill he'll be very fat, almost bloated looking, and ready for a few days of good sleep. The best time to offer him food is at these times, after he's soaked but before he's gone back to sleep.

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    You want to have humidity from 50-60 day to 60-70 at night so a fogger would help to actually reach this. It also would hydrate the frogs without them needing to soak and you also get the benefit of a weather condition being fog! As I said before my tree frogs all love them and they really are a great device. I also use them with toads but it's to create weather and to get to a humidity goal.

    You and use a misting system as well I use both together at times and it can really enhance the frogs activity because they perk up like it's raining. Some will call because it can induce seasonal spikes in humidity. If you don't plan to get a large enclosure an exo terra monsoon solo would be enough for a smaller tank. If you plan on going 50+ gallons then a mistaking would be pretty good for this size.

    I just want to offer this up to you so you can decide if you want to have these. They are both the fogger and misting system very good devices and can make caring for the tank as a whole much easier. I have used both for 4 years with frogs and toads so it's possible.

    If you want to use it then it's all your choice. If you are interested in using these to create like weather conditions I can actually help you with setting that up. Hope this helps you. Good luck!

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by KP View Post
    The reason you don't want to encourage captive Gray Tree Frog brumation is that an estimated 50% of the populations of species that do pass the winter months in that condition in the wild don't survive it. It's a natural culling process that I'm pretty sure you don't want to subject your frog to. As I alluded to, your Gray Tree Frog will, if conditions are right, be spending his winters as if he vacationed down to Florida for the fall/winter months.
    KP
    I actually want to see a source for this because that's a very high number. Are you saying for in the wild or people who attempt to brumate?

    As for brumation it's something that is not for everyone. In the right hands of a more advanced keeper they can create conditions that can accommodate the grays or any North American species to be in conditions where it's not as dangerous like dropping below zero and having major temp spikes. There are many sources who have brumated native species with minimal to no loss.

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Wardog View Post
    I actually want to see a source for this because that's a very high number. Are you saying for in the wild or people who attempt to brumate?

    As for brumation it's something that is not for everyone. In the right hands of a more advanced keeper they can create conditions that can accommodate the grays or any North American species to be in conditions where it's not as dangerous like dropping below zero and having major temp spikes. There are many sources who have brumated native species with minimal to no loss.

    Sent from my BKL-L04 using Tapatalk
    I'm not engaging with you, I'm addressing the original poster's questions. You should try that too.

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Geez you guys, sorry NP, it seems that discussion here went out of the hands... again. I apologize.

    as for your question. KP gave you a great advice. Overall i think the frog is just fine, slowing down is normal at that time of the year. Although it natural for frogs to go through the cycles in a wild, you should never attempt to do it in captivity. Advanced keepers is a different story, but even they wouldnt do it unless there is a choice.
    Save one animal and it doesn't change the world, but it surely changes the world for that one animal!

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Lija View Post
    Geez you guys, sorry NP, it seems that discussion here went out of the hands... again. I apologize.

    as for your question. KP gave you a great advice. Overall i think the frog is just fine, slowing down is normal at that time of the year. Although it natural for frogs to go through the cycles in a wild, you should never attempt to do it in captivity. Advanced keepers is a different story, but even they wouldnt do it unless there is a choice.
    Geez no appreciation for me! Lol but you are right. I apologise NP.

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Ok thanks again everyone : )

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    Default Re: Gray tree frog question

    Quote Originally Posted by Np View Post
    Ok thanks again everyone : )
    You're quite welcome Np.
    It's good to receive a variety of approaches to any problem that has no absolutely singular resolution.
    When you receive the benefits of several people's experience you can see that people have had success with solving your particular problems through different methods and you can decide for yourself which methods or combination of methods are most practical for you to try.
    Some problems do have only one remedy and on this forum you can also find those.
    Keep coming back whenever you need the community of experienced Frog/Toad caretakers to make suggestions and I'm sure you'll find good info all around.
    Best wishes on your foray into Frog-keeping.
    KP

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