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Thread: Tadpole identification help?

  1. #1
    ramble
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    Default Tadpole identification help?

    Can someone help me out, at least to rule out these being Cuban tree frogs?

    I got them from a friend's back yard puddle and wanted to let my kids watch them transform and then we'd let them hop off as they please...but I don't want to think about what happens if they're Cuban and from the guides I looked at, I couldn't be sure. The longest ones are about 1".

    I know the picture isn't great, I can try to take more tomorrow in the natural light if this isn't good enough. I'm sure you get a ton of these request, so I apologize in advance for being annoying!


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  3. #2
    Paul Rust
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    Good grief, if questions were annoying we wouldn't be here.
    Hello and welcome to FrogForum!

    Tadpoles are extremely difficult to identify. The best thing is to identify the adults in the area where they are found and that is likely what you have.

    I can't identify that tadpole in the pic, it looks like too many others. Hopefully someone might be able to narrow it down for you.

  4. #3
    ramble
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    I have been looking at all sorts of identification guides and I don't know how anyone identifies any of these with all the variations they have! I tried two more pictures. Their bellies are kind of see-through but are shiny coppery-pink. They are already bigger than the maximum listed for the frogs that have coppery or pink bellies (southern chorus and little grass frog).

    I have no hope of identifying the adults since they came from someone else's back yard and neither of us are any good at identifying adults - esp the cuban tree frogs have so many variations in color. I am in Central Florida if that helps. I am going to ask her today if she ever saw the eggs.




  5. #4
    ramble
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    My friend seems pretty certain that they are going to be green tree frogs since that is all she has seen in her yard lately. Her husband and I are giving her a hard time about the Cubans so she's busy frog watching at night to see what she can find. We're pretty certain they won't be since she hasn't seen any in a long time.

    In the meantime, some of my bigger guys (1.5" or so) are getting their back legs. On some of them, this seems to be causing their tails to bend, almost into an S shape. Is this normal? Are they going to be okay?

    eta: I just read it's related to nutrition. Some had a slight curve when I got them but on a few now it's more defined. I feed them spinach and blood worms. They eat a LOT of spinach. Am I doing something wrong?

  6. #5
    ramble
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    Update in case anyone was wondering: We now have some incredibly cute frogs. I'm still not sure what they are - the markings look like a leopard frog but the toes look like a tree frog of some kind. I'll admit I am not good identifying frogs but we're having fun watching them morph so quickly.




  7. #6
    Founder John's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    They're not Cubans. With quick glance they look to me like some sort of Pseudacris.
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  8. #7
    ramble
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    They lost the yellow and now just have the black stripe running from their nose down their side. My money is on Little Grass Frog (pseudacris ocularis?) We have about 25 of them right now and I think a few have already hopped off.

    I think I also have some Leopard frog tadpoles. They only have back legs, are a lot bigger and very spotted.

  9. #8
    100+ Post Member JimO's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    Welcome. Those are pretty cool looking froglets. I was just going to say that if your friend sees a lot of green tree frogs, then there probably aren't any cubans around because the native tree frogs disappear pretty quickly when cubans take over. Not only do they compete for food, they eat smaller tree frogs and due to their size, they could take out even an adult female green tree frog.

    Last winter was so cold that apparently many of the tropical exotic animals were killed, even as far south as Miami. My sister-in-law lives in Boca and she has seen a lot fewer cuban tree frogs, cane toads, iguanas, and knight anoles, all of which have been common down there for years.
    I used to think that I had to understand in order to believe, then I realized that I must believe in order to understand - Augustine

  10. #9
    ramble
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    Can I show more pictures of the cuteness? I can totally see now how you all get into this. I am having so much fun identifying them and watching them grow.

    Why I think some are little grass frogs:


    And, interestingly, today I noticed 2 or 3 differently colored ones though the markings and size are similar:



    I lost four babies this week (the only ones I've lost), but I am trying to tell myself that is still better than mother nature's odds for the hundred or so that I had.

  11. #10
    ramble
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    Jim, sorry, I meant to say, yes I agree that my friend seems to have quite the assortment of native frogs. She's gotten into identifying them too with our little project. She had to prove her husband wrong that we were raising cubans! LOL

    I wouldn't be surprised if we lost a lot of the invasive species during the cold last year, but we also lost a lot of native ones too. We found many dead tree frogs, sadly. Hopefully repopulating the native ones will help keep the cuban tree frogs at bay naturally as well.

  12. #11
    100+ Post Member JimO's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tadpole identification help?

    It's great what you're doing and I am convinced that any losses you have are a fraction of what would happen in the wild.
    I used to think that I had to understand in order to believe, then I realized that I must believe in order to understand - Augustine

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