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Home > Frogs > Can Frogs Eat Fish? Amphibian Diet

Can Frogs Eat Fish? Amphibian Diet

Oriental Fire Bellied Frog in the water_ agus fitriyanto suratno_Shutterstock

Frogs are primarily carnivorous animals that eat a variety of insects and small fish in captivity and in the wild. A frog’s main diet will consist of insects; however, they will prey on smaller fish that live in the same habitat as them. Most small frogs that are well-fed on insects will not actively seek out fish for food unless they are hungry enough to prey on them.

Although fish may not be the ideal meal for an insect-eating frog, they will still eat them if they do not have insects or larvae to eat. If you are looking to feed fish to your frog, you may want to consider a few factors before switching your frog to a new food source.

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Are Fish Safe for Frogs To Eat?

Yes, fish is generally considered to be safe to feed to frogs, however, the type and size of the fish will influence whether your frog is willing to eat the fish. Most frogs are not picky when it comes to food, and some species of frogs like the American bullfrog eat small fish and small reptiles as their main source of food.

Smaller species of frogs that you find in ponds usually feed on insects. It’s safe to feed small fish to a frog that eats insects, however, they may not take much interest in eating it. Frogs that mainly eat fish in the wild are likely to eat fish in captive ponds or aquariums.

Most feeder fish are safe for frogs to eat, but they do carry the risk of introducing parasites and diseases into your frog’s environment. Keep in mind that bigger fish may eat frogs, whereas bigger frogs can eat smaller fish. If you plan to feed your captive frogfish, make sure that the fish is appropriately sized to avoid harming your frog.

What Type Of Fish Can Frogs Eat?

Large frogs like American bullfrogs will prey on small species of fish such as goldfish and guppies which are commonly sold as feeder fish in pet stores. Frogs are opportunistic hunters that eat a range of different insects, small fish, smaller amphibians, and even reptiles depending on the type of frog and their natural diet.

Frogs can catch fish with their sticky tongues and then swallow them, which is why frogs will eat smaller fish that they can easily catch. Some frogs will also eat fish eggs or small fry during the development stages, especially if the frog is small.

A frog’s diet is diverse and frog owners will raise insects such as mealworms, crickets, roaches, snails, or slugs to feed their frogs. If you have fully aquatic frog-like African dwarf frogs, you can feed them smaller fish such as guppies or fish fry.

goldfish and guppies in tank
Image By: S-F, Shutterstock

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What Do Frogs Eat?

A frog’s diet will depend on factors such as the type of frog, its size, and its natural habitat. In captivity, frogs should eat a species-specific diet with suitable-sized prey. Large frogs such as the bullfrog will eat fish, insects, worms, and small rodents such as mice.

Smaller frogs mainly eat insects such as locusts, mealworms, and grasshoppers in both the wild and captivity. Some frogs may also eat smaller frogs and tadpoles if there are no other food sources available in their environment because they are opportunistic carnivores, however, tadpoles are at a herbivore stage where they only eat soft plant matter such as algae, moss, and water weeds.

Once the tadpole develops into an adult frog, it will primarily eat a carnivorous diet. In captivity, you should replicate your specie of frog’s natural diet, as some frogs will not feed on fish and prefer insects as their main source of food.

Can You Keep Frogs With Fish?

Fish and frogs can live together, however, there is a risk of your frog eating the fish or a fish injuring your frog. Fully aquatic frogs can be kept in the same aquarium as fish, but make sure they are non-aggressive fish. If you want to keep your aquatic frog with fish that they can eat when they get hungry, you want to make sure they are small enough to be swallowed by your frog.

You can introduce frogs into ponds with large fish such as koi and adult goldfish, however, large species of fish will attempt to eat the frog which can become an issue for both the frog and the fish. Frogs are commonly kept in koi ponds as they help clean up insects and larvae, however koi fish have been known to eat tadpoles and fish eggs.

Albino Pacman Frog
Image By: Dennis W Donohue, Shutterstock

What Size Fish Do Frogs Eat?

A general rule to consider when feeding fish to frogs is to make sure that it is small enough to fit into the frog’s mouth. Small species of frogs will only eat small fish and their fry and will struggle to eat larger fish that can potentially injure them.

Large fish such as bass or pike prey on frogs, making it nearly impossible for frogs to eat them. Small frogs should be eating small species of fish, but large frogs like bullfrogs can eat slightly larger fish like they would in the wild.

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Frogs are not picky eaters and will eat a range of different insects, fish, and larvae that they come across. Not all frogs eat the same foods since it depends on the type of frog and their natural diet. However, many aquatic frog species can eat small fish as part of their diet. It is important to keep your frog’s diet varied and any feeder fish that you give to your frog does not have any parasites or diseases that could harm your frog.

Featured Image Credit: Agus Fitriyanto Suratno, Shutterstock

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