Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Poison Dart Frogs-beautiful little jewels


The family dendrobatidae is composed of the genus Dendrobates, Phyllobates, Epipedobates, Minyobates, Colostethus and Aromobates. They live in tropical forests from Nicaragua to Bolivia and you can find them from sea level to 2.600 m. in the Venezuelan mountains ("Tepuis") as is the case of Epipedobates rufulus.

The skin of these frogs has a powerfull poison and, normally, they've striking colours and patterns to advertise its predators they're dangerous, this is called aposematic coloration. The poison is very strong in the case of Phyllobates terribilis, P.auratoenia and P.bicolor. These three species could be very dangerous even for humans. Some tribus of Colombia use them to poison their darts to hunt, it's instantaneous and it lasts for a long time in the darts. The captive breed poison dart frogs don't have this toxicity because the diet we give them in our terrariums lacks some alcaloids or another chemical compounds which are the precursors of the poison.

As a rule these frogs adapt and breed well in captivity. Its wonderfull coloration, the elaborate and nice mating methods and the diurnal activity make the poison dart frogs a desirable subject for the terrariums. A big number of people breed them in captivity.