Diablito Frog

The Diablito Frog (Oophaga sylvatica) is a small venomous amphibian in the Dendrobatidae family of poison dart frogs. 

The Diablito Frog varies in colour, from red and yellow to orange. The female has circular, round toe discs or pads that can stick to surfaces, whereas the male has heart-shaped toe discs. The female has an arched back, and the male has a curved back.

Diablito Frog

It grows to about 4 centimetres (2 inches) long. The male is smaller and thinner than the female.

It is native to countries in South America, such as Colombia and Ecuador. It prefers tropical, humid rainforests. It lives on the ground, so it is terrestrial. It lives in leaf litter, near streams and rivers. It climbs trees in the mating season. 

It is diurnal, active during the day. The adult frog feeds on insects, such as ants, termites, and mites. It catches its food with its short, sticky tongue. The Diablito Frog is highly toxic if eaten, which prevents some predators from eating it.

The life cycle is egg, tadpole, and frog. It is oviparous, laying eggs. The female frog lays 10-30 eggs in a small pool of water in the leaves of a plant, such as a bromeliad. The eggs hatch after about 14 days into tadpoles. The mother feeds her tadpoles unfertilized eggs. This egg-based diet is called oophagy.

It is a tadpole for about 10 weeks before undergoing metamorphosis to change into an adult frog – the tadpole grows legs and lungs, and loses its tail. 

The Diablito Frog lives for about 8 years.

Diablito Frog

Location of photographs: Parc Zoologique de Paris in Bois de Vincennes, France

Photographer: Martina Nicolls


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