Nov 162011
Pacman Frog

Pacman Frog, Ceratophrys ornata

Download the care sheet (pdf)

Adult Size
6 to 9 inches

Life Span
About 6 years, but up to 12.

Male/Female Differences
Females are larger – 9 inches – than the 6 inch males. Males croak, especially when grabbed from behind.

Pacman frogs will eat anything smaller than themselves, so keep these large animals by themselves.


Tropical jungles.

Day Cycle
Eats during the day.

Keep at about 80 degrees to maintain good digestion.

Use a small heat lamp to prevent drying the cage out. An under-tank heater works well. Full spectrum lighting helps in the proper absorption of calcium.

High humidity can be maintained by daily misting and a large water dish. Moss and shredded coconut bark help by holding moisture.

Hidden in the leaf litter of forest and jungle floors.

Gravel makes a great base for the substrate as it is not as messy as soil and provides drainage. Moss and/or coconut fibers on top of the gravel to maintain humidity and to allow the frog to bury themselves.

Hiding Place/Den
Moss will offer plenty of humidity and places for them to hide. Real or artificial plants also offer plenty of hiding places.

Cage Type
Aquariums work well as they hold humidity. A 20 inch critter cage is fine for a home as these frogs are largely sedentary.

Large crickets, earthworks, superworms, and goldfish up to pinkies, fuzzies, and adult mice.

Dust crickets with a high quality vitamin/calcium powder for juveniles once a week. Adults need less supplementation – every three to four weeks – as they should get all of the vitamins from a varied and balanced diet.

Diet Precautions
Feed prey items no larger then half the size of the frog. Offer some variety to ensure proper nutrition, and avoid over supplementing.

Feed juveniles two to three times a week, and adults every one to two weeks. Dead prey items, such as frozen pinkies, may need to be wiggled in front of toad with forceps to catch the attention of these ambush predators.

Water Source
Mist the cage and change the water bowl daily to keep the humidity high. These frogs are not strong swimmers so the water dish should not be deeper than half their body.

Pacman frogs maintain their healthy skin through correct humidity and minimal handling. Provide fresh water to help prevent infections and dehydration.

Oral and Foot Care
Bacterial infection called red leg is always a risk for captive frogs.

Proper Handling
Even though they get used to being handled, this should be kept to a minimum. Dry hands will irritate their skin, and always wash your hands after handling.

Habitat Maintenance
Change the water daily. Spot clean the cage as needed, and change the substrate every one to two weeks.

Health Concerns
Dehydration, internal and external parasites are a health concern for these frogs. Bacterial infections like red leg can be due to unsanitary conditions.

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