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Pyxie Frog (Pyxicephalus adspersus) Care Sheet

Pyxie frogs are a large aggressive frog from sub Saharan Africa.  These frogs grow very large and can reach 9 inches long and weigh up to 3 pounds.  Pyxie frogs live in some of the harshest environments and can survive underground without food and water for several years.  Every year when the rains begin, the frogs emerge from ground and begin to eat.   Pyxie frogs eat anything they can overpower and fit into their mouth.  Pyxie frogs will also eat their own kind and this includes their young.  Male Pyxie frogs are larger than females and have a yellowish–orange belly and throat.  Females are usually a lighter green and have a white belly and throat.  Females usually breed with the largest males and lay up to 4000 eggs.  The eggs hatch within 2 days and become froglets in less than 19 days.  The male Pyxie will watch over his young and sometimes dig channels to help water get to their pool, if theirs starts to dry.   However, the male will eat some of his young while he protects them.  Pyxie frogs are long lived and with proper care, can live for over 40 years.

Temperature

    
Pyxie frogs need to be maintained between 80-85 degrees during the day.  Nighttime temperatures should range between 68-75 degrees. 

Housing

    
Pyxie frogs can be housed comfortably in 10-29 gallon terrariums.  The cage can be filled with shallow water or it can be setup with damp potting soil and a large water bowl.  Never place a cage near a window where sunlight can directly shine on your cage.  Cages placed in direct sunlight can easily overheat and ultimately lead to the death of your frog.  We recommend that you keep Pyxie frogs separately; larger individuals can eat smaller frogs.

Bedding

    
We recommend using gravel when your cage is filled with shallow water.  Another alternative is using Zoo Meds’ Eco Earth and green moss.  Make sure when using Eco Earth that the bedding stays moist at all times.

Food

    
Pyxie frogs should be fed appropriate sized crickets, superworms, nightcrawlers, fish, and rodents.  It is best to feed your frog dead rodents to prevent bites or injury.  Young frogs can be fed 2-3 times each week and adults should eat every 1-2 weeks. 

Cleaning and Handling

    
The terrarium should be cleaned as necessary. Any fecal matter or left over food should be cleaned out several times a week. The bedding should be completely changed once a month and fresh clean water should be provided at all times.  The inside of the terrarium can be cleaned out with an appropriate reptile cage cleaner, we recommend Natural Chemistry’s Healthy Habitat.  Pyxie frogs can be handled on a daily basis and always wash your hands before and after handling them.