A diurnal (daytime) frog from all areas of South America.
(Dendro g= tree / bates g = one that walks or haunts / tinct L = dyed, tinged)
Common Name: Tinc. and dyeing poison dart frog
These frogs incorporate Black, blue, & yellow into many recognizable morphs. These morphs are generally specific to locality.
Easily one of the larger and more bold dart frogs, these are a joy to own as a captive breeder! These frogs are very active and as juveniles resemble a pack of little dogs in groups of 4-7. The Tinctorius group are a highly intelligent hardy species. They will recognize your voice and are very eager at mealtime. Captive bred Tinctorius are NON-Toxic as the source of their toxin comes from the insects consumed in the wild. Absent this in captivity they are quite harmless. Please resist the urge to handle your dart frog too much as a fall from a standing height can injure your frogs fragile bones or cause internal injuries.
Once your D. Tinctorius have matured, it will be necessary to pair them off and remove any excess frogs. These frogs do not do well in groups as adults. Aggression is especially notable among the females. The dominant female will cause the other to die from stress or drowning.
These frogs range in size from 1.3 to 2.36 inches ( 34- 60mm)
Dendrobates Tinctorius 'Alanis'. Native of Suriname. A small country bordered by the North Atlantic ocean and the countries of Brazil, French Gulana, and Guyana. Suriname comprises 161,470 sq. km of tropical climate ranging from 2 meters to its highest point, Mount Julian at 1,230 meters. Rolling Hills, Coast plains, and swamps create varied climates for the development of several suriname tinctorius morphs. This morph features Light grey to Dark blue mottling on the legs, upper body is light yellow to white striping and/or pattern. Extremely friendly and bold species!
Unfortunately, the quest for resources currently threaten this species in the wild. Suriname is rich in oil, timber, gold, and other precious metals. Habitats are being destroyed at an increasing rate.
Dendrobates Tinctorius 'Alanis' is extremely easy to care for and a Very hardy species. If you want a frog that is responsive, playful, and friendly, the Tinctorius is one of the best choices. Dendrobates Tinctorius are generally a little more to purchase but are well worth the small additional cost! 2-4 month old froglets range between $75- $90CDN with the Lemon Drop Tinctorius currently valued at $200 each.
Feeding- While a great amount of debate exists about the best feeding program for Dart frogs, much has already been learned in the relatively short time these animals have been in captivity. While feeding the widest range of foods available is always a good thing to, these frogs can also thrive on a diet of just Melongaster or Hydei flightless fruit flies.
Always make sure these foods are dusted with both Calcium powder and a vitamin supplement powder as well. We dust our feeder insects at every feeding. Rep-Cal phosphorus free calcium powder with vitamin D has been specially formulated for dart frogs. Other brands containing phosphorus can be damaging to your frogs over the long term and lead to spasms and death. We encourage their use at every feeding. One container can easily last a hobbyist for one year. It is well worth the small investment. In their captive habitat, they nourish mainly on drosophylias as well as micro pinhead crickets. It is also possible to give them small insects found directly in nature, i.e., plant louses or termites. Special care should be taken not to overfeed on these as they contain high levels of fat and chitin. In particular woodlice or the ladybirds. Chitin is not very well digested. There also are risks of obstruction of the bowels. It is important to note that one should not offer food caught in a place treated with insecticides, pesticides or manure.
For advanced information regarding fruit flies and the culturing of other foods visit our Culture Corner (HERE)
Housing your Dart Frogs
Sexing & Breeding
Sexual dimorphism generally becomes apparent as the frogs mature. This will generally happen around 12-14 months of age. This process can be sped up a bit by feeding your frogs well twice per day instead of once or as some do, or only every two to three days. If you need to sex the frogs before calling and courting begin, there are a few accepted ways.
The front fingers of the male develop a flat, bi-lobed, terminal disc. Males are slightly more large than the female. Males may begin calling immediately, but if not, sometimes an impression of a throat sac can be seen. Tinctorius are not very vocal, however, Just a faint low pitched buzzing sound. Females when ready for breeding will become extremely rotund when gravid with eggs. The female will also appear slightly rounder from the rear. Breeding can be induced at will by replicating a dry season of 5-7 days and then spraying twice a day with mist.
Dendrobates Tinctorius 'Alanis' prefer to use a coconut hut placed in the enclosure with a Petri type dish or lid container inside. The elaborate courtship mating is quite delicate. This begins with the female stroking the back of the male. The female and male stroke each other as they locate to a more private locale. The mating begins with the male assuming amplexis where he will inseminate the eggs as they emerge. Sometimes the male does not play such an active role at the time of egg deposition. It is always a good idea to leave the eggs where they were laid for up to 48 hours to make sure they are fully fertilized. Beware if you have extra females in the enclosure as they will attack the eggs and eat them. Other females will want the male to resume breeding and not encumbered by the responsibility of a litter to care for. I always remove my eggs at day two and place them in a plastic box for incubating. Carefully add a bit of water to keep the eggs moist but do not submerge them. You are about to embark on a wondrous journey with the creation of your very own froglets!
For More information on Egg Care or Tadpole Care go (HERE)
The Dendrobates Tinctorius 'Alanis' is yet another natural wonder of beauty that only nature could create. And only man can eradicate. Please join in our efforts to save this beautiful creature.
Captive breeding programs are starting in Suriname to provide reliable dendrobate ranching for the locals. This combined with captive breeders worldwide are working to provide a booming hobbyist trade with out decimating wild populations. DO NOT buy illegal wild caught frogs! Many are shipped inhumanely and do nor survive. The ones that do are weakened, sick, and generally do not live long. These can also jeopardize any frogs you already have.
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