The White’s tree frog might just be the most underrated pet in existence. Which sounds like hype, but hear me out. I have three White’s tree frogs and despite being almost identical, I can tell them apart. They have their own zones they live in, typical behaviors and even personalities. Of the pet amphibians out there they are the most handleable, and easiest to keep safe and healthy. They also make the most incredible sounds, albeit occasionally when you’d rather be sleeping.
- Funky features and mad skills
- Gorgeous, low maintenance habitats
- Simple feeding
- No fuss taming and handling
I have a lot of different animals, from common creatures like rabbits, gerbils and guinea pigs, to the more exotic beardie, mourning geckos and giant Madagascan day gecko. Not to mention all of the fish. But my tree frogs are without a doubt my favorites (although don’t tell Sisu the day gecko, she’s a close second).
These chunky frogs look as close to plush toys as a wet amphibian will ever get. They’ve got large faces, rolling eyebrow ridges and enormous eyes. Their stomachs are creamy white and their skin is the brightest of blue greens. Unless something upsets them, in which case they sulk in a corner looking like your typical brown toad.
For their build they are crazy athletic, throwing themselves around the tank into the plants or water. They climb well, although not as well as a lizard. Instead, they scale the glass in a rather awkward manner, but they get there in the end.
They scale the huge leaves of their plants as though they weigh nothing at all, and rest balanced as if suspended in mid air.
Assuming you go bioactive (and I recommend you do) your tank will be a stunning art form in any room of the house. Layered from the bottom up you’ll have a drainage section, hidden divider, then some deep soil substrate covered in moss and planted thickly with Monstera, pothos, ferns and grasses. I have a friend who isn’t even a pet person really (I know) who adores their setup and wants one in her own house, just for the foliage!
Bioactive tanks don’t need lots of mucking out. Though they do shockingly big poops for their size which when left on leaves you’ll want to pick up in a bit of toilet paper and pop into the bathroom.
Either buy a misting system or use a spray bottle to soak the tank twice a day, making sure to pop a few drops of dechlorinator into the water. Throw in a handful of bugs each morning, and let them crack on with it.
They don’t freeze in the winter or overheat in the summer because they are indoors. You’ll need a UVB bulb (yes I know some people don’t, I think the pros outweigh the cons) and a room with a radiator when it gets cold or air con when it’s high heat, but basically they like it how we like it but wetter.
Easy To Feed
White’s tree frogs eat bugs. Any creepy crawly creatures that will fit into their mouths, they’ll eat. The sort that are readily available from your local pet store, or about a dozen great online merchants too.
These frogs will eat anything and everything living you put into the tank. Including each other in fairness, so be careful that you only age similar sized frogs together. They won’t go on hunger strike or get all picky and shun their dinner on a whim.
In fact you’ve never seen anything to match a splat of a frog leaping half a foot, with their mouth open wide straight onto their dinner. Then fishing out the substrate with one foot and pushing it in with the other. It’s graceless, yet incredible.
Don’t Need Taming
These frogs are naturally cool customers. They are relaxed and cheerful, although mine occasionally object and hop away when I put a camera too close to their faces! Reptiles and amphibians don’t tame down in the traditional sense we think of with mammals, but they can become accustomed to handling. These frogs however, much like the world favorite bearded dragon, will usually chill with someone they haven’t even met before.
Happy To Handle
Amphibians shouldn’t be handled too much, because their skin absorbs what they come into contact with. If you’re going to handle them you need clean dried hands with no product on them, or to wear gloves. And even then you should keep sessions short. However, this species does seem to cope better with human attention than many others.
Live For Ages
If I play my cards right, my froglets will spend up to 20 years living in my home. At fifty bucks each, that’s some serious value for money.
The White’s Tree Frogs Song
Adult male White’s tree frogs can croak, but it has to be heard to be believed. This is no little pond frog ribbit, it’s a beautiful bellow. That said, I recommend not keeping the tank in your bedroom, because if they do that at night you’re not going to be sleeping through it.
Relaxing To Watch
Life is stressful right now for all of us, so having something, anything that can help you mellow out is a good thing. I have my frogs in my office, along with my other bioactive tanks, and they genuinely keep me steady. Watching them sit, with their throats gently moving, or slowly exploring the tank, is a real highlight of every day.
Why You Need White’s Tree Frogs
Okay, so no one should jump into getting a pet without doing a bunch of research and making sure they can support them in the long term. But if you can and you’re looking for a relaxed indoor buddy, I really can’t rate these guys highly enough.