African Clawed Frog, Xenopus laevis:

General Information

Xenopus are native to Angola, in the southern and eastern part of Africa. They are an Aquatic frog with a smooth olive of green skin. Their front legs have four long fingers and the hind legs have five long toes connected by a thin skin membrane. On the bottom of their toes are little claws. These frogs can also alter their colour to match the tone of the surroundings. Males are usually smaller than females and have dark pads on the undersides of their hands and forearms. Females are large and measure four to five inches in length. Mating for these animals very rarely occurs in captivity unless both the male and female have been injected with hormones.


Xenopus do not require a dry area as they are completely aquatic. One frog requires at least one gallon of water, however, it is important to keep the depth of water less than twelve inches. Keep the water temperature at 25°C. The water may be tap water as long as it is allowed to stand for a minimum of one day. This allows the chlorine and other purification chemicals to dissipate. Water should remain stagnant in the tank as constant movement tends to cause increased stress in the animals. Cover, such as half a clay pot, should be offered to provide a hiding place for the animals. Cleaning should be carried out at least twice weekly and should normally be scheduled the day following feeding.


Xenopus should be fed once a day or every other day. Quantities should be limited to what can be consumed by the animals within fifteen to twenty minutes after introduction. Over feeding will cause clouding water. Food should include turtle food, beef liver, heart or kidney. If water becomes cloudy simply bail or syphon in about fifty to sixty percent new water.


1. Reptiles and Amphibians: Care and Culture (1993)
2. Animal watch–1(3), 1995, African Clawed frog
3. Alan Beck, 1994 Info and Care Sheet for the African Clawed frog

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