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Whistling Tree Frogs

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I was down @ my local LFS today - they were selling tadpoles for $2.50ea! :o

I'm pretty sure they are the bigger Green Frog's.

I would like some WTF's

What's the best way of catching these things as adults, I hear them all the time at night at my mums place, but as yet have never been able to see one let alone catch one!

I have had heaps of experience caring for the "Big Green's" and would like to try the little fellars. :wink:

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Where in NZ is your mum's place? They're only found in the wild in the south island and up in Northland in the north island, nowhere near Wanganui. I bought 5 WTF tadpoles late last year for $2 each and raised them in a golfish bowl. All five emerged from the water around christmas time and I still have all of them in an 80L terrarium, big enough to fit them for life. At $2.50 I think you should just buy and raise a few of them, this is nothing next to the cost of a terrarium to keep them in. If you really want to catch them, they can usually be found clinging to plants anywhere up to waist height. Tadpoles can be found in ditches and ponds wherever a population is established. Here are a few tips:

Tadpole Food:

Pour boiling water into a mug. Add a few pieces of sliced cucumber. Microwave on high for 1 minute or until it almost boils over. Use a teatowel or oven gloves to take the mug out and tip the water out against the edge of te kitchen sink. Fill and empty several times with cold water to cool it. Take out the slices of cucumber, hold them over the sink in a stack, and stick your thumb through the centre. This will push out the seeds in the centre. Rinse the cucumber and give the slices to the tadpoles.

Cleaning:

The more frequent the better. I raised all five of the tadpoles I bought without any deaths by changing the water in the bowl every two days.

Frog food:

Vestigial winged fruitflies are definitely the best food for young whistling tree frogs. Easy to culture, prolific, nutritious and easy to catch. When they get larger you can feed them house flies. Mine are still on the fruitflies and will be for many months yet.

Terrarium:

Minimum 45cm high to let them climb. Try to have some reaonably tall plants so that they can clamber around. These frogs can easily climb the vertical glass walls so the terrarium must be completely enclosed. I had 4 cable holes (1 in each corner) in my terrarium which I covered with a soft mesh. The terrarium must have a lid to keep in moisture but small holes are fine. A shallow bowl of water must be kept in there so that they can swim, but tree frogs don't have webbed feet and can occasionally drown in deeper water. I use a green granite bowl buried in the soil and my solution is to keep java moss in the bowl, almost to the surface.Frogs can drink from the bowl but can't drown. Evaporation from the water bowl will probably keep the terrarium moist enough that only an occasional spray from a misting bottle is required to keep up a high humidity.

Soil & Planting:

The soil must contain no fertilisers of any sort as these are highly toxic to frogs. Fertiliser runoff from farms is one of the main reasons for the decline of frog populations worldwide. Ordinary topsoil is ideal for this. Alternatively, just use soil from an area in your garden that hasn't been fertilised for at least a year. Plants should be removed from their pots before being put in the terrarium, their roots should be washed out to remove as much of the soil as possible, and they should be replanted in the terrarium. I use a layer of gravel 4-5 cm thick to hold water and have a layer of garden soil on top, providing a good growing medium for the plants. Ferns and mosses seem to do particularily well in the moist environment.

If you need any other help in setting up your frogs, please ask. much as I can.

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Change that - I misread your post and thought the tadpoles were WTF ones. If they're going to be any other species you'll need a much larger terrarium with plenty of water to keep them. Height isn't needed for these species and plants aren't essenial but they serve to provide hiding places and add to the beauty of the terrarium.

If you've never seen a WTF, the three in my avatar should give you an idea of what they look like. I'm quite proud of that picture :) .

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I know for a fact that WTF are in Otautau, Wainuomata, Palmerston North (Froggsville) [Jan Paynes], Rangawahia (brothers farm).

I've tried to get a colony started here in Whakatane, but haven't had any success yet.

Any donation of spawn would be appreciated in the spawning season.

I'll pay for the p&p

Thanks if you consider me.

Alan

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I wonder if MAF would have a problem with you trying to start a colony? If I remember right they're actually an introduced species and they'd rather wipe out an introduced species to extinction than let it spread.

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I am 100% positive that there are Whistlers in Wanganui and have been here for a long time.

The calls I have heard at night match the call recordings I have heard.

Still not sure the easiest way off catching adults!

May have to source some 'poles from the lfs

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I wonder if MAF would have a problem with you trying to start a colony? If I remember right they're actually an introduced species and they'd rather wipe out an introduced species to extinction than let it spread.

I don't think they are too serious about getting rid of them as afaik they don't harm native species as they live in totally different areas.

Alan - my aunties farm has 3 ponds with thousands of tadpoles, if you want I can get you heaps closer to nov/dec, but I can't gurantee they will be whistling tree frogs..

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Don't think it is Chris, used to farm out Clevedon way years ago.

Thanks for the offer tho.

As a point of interest, there is a place just east of Papakura, that farms green bell frogs for export.

Alan

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hi how do u know what frogs u got i got some tadpoles for my son about 2 mths ago and and now i got 2 frogs and do not kown what there r is there some way to kown what frog i got the ones i got r light green and r very small but that could be becoues there just still babys

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I wonder if MAF would have a problem with you trying to start a colony? If I remember right they're actually an introduced species and they'd rather wipe out an introduced species to extinction than let it spread.

MAF don't care about the spread of WTFs as such, but they care a lot about some of the diseases they can carry. I believe it is actually illegal to transport and release them without a license because there are several foreign diseases that barely affect introduced frogs but are lethal to our natives.

Perhaps the books I read were old and they have spread more since they were published. If they live near you then by all means go for it. Catching adults is apparently very easy, I know somebody who used to catch them as a small child on the west coast of the south island. Apparently she caught very large numbers so it can't be too diffcult if a child can do it easily. Good luck :) .

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That makes it hard for getting spawn or tadpoles,

and being sure of the species,

unless the frogs are seen doing their thing or a pond is used exclusively by one or the other.

Alan

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my brother who used to be into frogs can tell the difference between the tadpoles i think i can still remember too.when i go up on the 9th of april i'd be happy sell some really cheap if anyone wanted to pick them up from my granparents farm

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On 8/24/2022 at 6:00 PM, ReptileFanaticsnz said:

Anyone here have WTF available now? adults or sub adults?

it may pay to make a new WTB post - this thread is from 2004 :)

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1 minute ago, Caryl said:

The subject heading was still correct though and he did ask if anyone had them available now 😉

I know - I just wonder if the WTB section would be more appropriate / gets a bit more traffic 

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