Tadpole Time

It’s Tadpole Time……there is still time to catch tadpoles and watch them grow into frogs. My kids and I have watched our tadpoles turn into frogs and now we are on our 2nd batch of tadpoles. My kids were able to bring them to their classrooms to share. I brought them to the classrooms when the tadpoles started to grow legs, the kids were so interested as many have never seen tadpoles at the stage before. I contacted a friend of mine who is an amphibian specialist and she gave me some wonderful pointers I would like to pass along if you are going to raise tadpoles.

  • Bring extra containers to collect water and ‘muck’ where the tadpoles were found.
  • Use the pond or stream water mixed with clean (de-cloronized tap water).
  • The best food for tadpoles is the ‘muck’ or mud at the bottom of the stream or pond where tadpoles where collected as it contains small worms and bugs the tadpoles love to eat.
  • Make hiding places for the tadpoles (I boiled some rocks and added them to our tadpole tank).
  • Make land for the tadpoles as they develop legs (that happens 1st) and arms, again I used rocks).
  • As the water temperature increases so does the appetite of the tadpoles, make sure there is enough food. (I used frog and tadpole pellets and live floating plants from the pet store and plenty of ‘muck’).
  • Many of the frogs species that live in the Bay Area, CA are tree frogs, but not all. A telltale sign of a tree frog is the formation of sucker cups on the fingers and toes. There are a few species that are endangered, if you have a question leave a replay to this post.
  • Once they make the change from tadpole to frog, the tree frogs do not like to be in water and are more at home in trees and shrubs. It is illegal to return frogs (caught as tadpoles) back to a water way so release them in a backyard or park.
  • Tadpoles do not like their water too clean, they like their muck. Don’t make the water too clean.
  • Our 1st batch of tadpoles started to cannibalize each other, I was horrified. My scientist friend then stepped in, she said they can cannibalize due to stress, at the time their water was too clean and they did not have any muck. Their awful stress reaction stopped the day I gave them fresh muck.







4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Anonymous
    May 09, 2012 @ 15:17:56

    Wonderful hints, descriptions & photos. I can tell that you are a scientist.


    • kidsncoupons
      May 09, 2012 @ 18:41:27

      Thank you for taking the time to read my post on Tadpoles. My kids had such a good time watching them turn into frogs. I think I had just as much fun as they did with the project


  2. Anonymous
    Jun 13, 2012 @ 12:23:03

    where can you catch in bay area?


    • kidsncoupons
      Jun 13, 2012 @ 19:52:50

      Tappole Time is at its peak early May in th Bay Area. I caught our tadpoles in a small pond I came across at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in Watsonville, there is Soqule Creek with lots of branches all over though I dont know if you u will still find tadpoles this late in the season, probably lots and lots of frogs. Ponds and the shallows in slow moving water of creeks. There is a great pond in Pleasanton, CA (actually Sunol, you have to hike to it though a very kid friendly 15-20 min hike to top of the hill, can see the whole valley and there is a fantastic pond there for catching tadpoles and tons and tons of frogs there as well. While in Sunol u may want to check out the train ride, very fun, lots to look at, my kids loved it.


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