Tomato Frog Care Sheet

Tomato Frog Care

Tomato Frog, photo by Heather Paul


  • Scientific Name: Dyscophus insularis
  • Lifespan: Approximately 6 – 8 years
  • Handling:Like most frog species, tomato frogs should not be handled regularly. Try to keep handling to a minimum.
  • Size: Approximately 2.4 – 4 inches. Females will be bigger than males.
  • Care: Easy
  • Community: Tomato Frogs may be housed together if they are the same size.
  • Lifestyle: Nocturnal, active at night.

Tank Size

The size tank depends on the size of your tomato frog. Below are a few tank sizes that you will be needing for one or more frogs.

  • 1 tomato frog requires a 10 gallon tall tank
  • 2 tomato frogs need a 20 gallon tall tank
  • 3 tomato frogs need a 30 gallon tall tank

…and so forth. The rule is 10 gallons per tomato frog. But remember, the more room, the better.


Note: A lid is necessary on the tank enclosure to avoid escapes.

Tank Setup

Like the pacman frog, tomato frogs do not really need much to live a happy life. You should setup the tank very basic with only a few things.


Substrate to allow your tomato frog to burrow itself. How many inches of substrate for a tomato frog? It all depends on how big your tomato frog is. You should put enough to allow your tomato frog to be fully submerged under it if he wants to be.

Water Bowl

A water bowl your tomato frog can easily get into and out of. Your tomato frog will use the water bowl for two things.

  • To submerge itself in the water to cool down and to hydrate itself
  • To use the bathroom, which is why it should be cleaned out and re-filled daily. Use de-chlorinated water (not distilled)


Two plants (fake or real), one on each side of the enclosure to allow your tomato frog to hide when it submerges itself in the substrate. If using real plants, make sure to have proper lighting to keep your plants alive. Choose plants that will not overwhelm your enclosure and choose plants that will be able to survive you enclosure temperatures and humidity levels. Also make sure to clean plants thoroughly to wash out any unwanted pests, pesticides, and creatures.

Lighting & Heating

Tomato frogs do not need a UVB bulb or any other type of special lighting. All they need is a source of heat through a regular house bulb or reptile heat lamp. Some people may recommend getting a heat pad for under the tank, but it is not needed. Tomato frogs will burrow themselves into the substrate to stay cool. If you put a heat pad under than tank, it will only warm up the substrate. This may cause your tomato frog to spend most of its days in the water bowl to stay cool which is not practical.


When measuring temperatures, it’s best to use digital thermometers. Dial thermometers tend to give off inaccurate measurements.

Day Time

Juvenile: 75°F ambient 80°F warm side

Adult: 75°F ambient 85°F warm side

Night Time

No lights are necessary. Temperatures of 65 – 75°F are recommended. If it is too cold to meet this temperature without lights, I recommend using a ceramic heat emitter.

Feeding & Diet

A tomato frog’s diet will consist mostly of live insects including: crickets, silkworms, hornworms, small roaches, night crawlers and other types of worms.


Juveniles should be fed 5 – 7 times a week, while adult tomato frogs should be fed around 3 – 4 times a week (every other day). The amount to bed fed will vary depending on the size of your tomato frog. No recommendation will meet your needs unless the size and weight is determined. Normally, you will want to feed whatever your tomato frog can eat within 15 minutes. Never feed anything bigger than what they can handle. The rule of thumb is to make sure the feeder is smaller than the space between its eyes.


Their feedings must be dusted as follows:

  • Calcium without D3 every other feeding
  • Calcium with D3 – 2-3 times a month
  • Multivitamins – 2-3 times a month


Tomato frogs need humidity. The best way to calculate how much humidity you have in the tank is by using a hygrometer. Digital hygrometers work best. Humidity levels should be between 70 – 80 %. You can reach these percentages by misting the tomato frogs enclosure twice daily; once in the morning and once again in the afternoon. If the levels are still not being reached, just mist a few more times throughout the day. Don’t mist too much, that your substrate turns into mud. You don’t want that happening.


For hydration, your tomato frog will use a water dish to absorb water and to hydrate itself. The water bowl as mentioned above will also be used as your tomato frogs bathroom. So make sure it is cleaned out daily and replaced with proper water.


The depth of the water should be no higher than the height of your tomato frogs mouth when resting.

Water that is safe to use:

  1. De-chlorinated water
  2. Tap water that has been left out for 24 hours uncovered, allowing the chlorine to evaporate
  3. Bottled water


People use different types of substrate and have different opinions. The best substrate most people will agree on is coconut fiber (coco fiber) also known as eco earth. Do not confuse this with coconut husk or coconut chips, because those are not the types of substrates you will be wanting to use. When creating the substrate in the enclosure, you are going to want to make one half of the enclosure a little damper than the other half. Usually the side with the water bowl is the side that you want more damped. Creating two sides with different types of damp substrate will give your tomato frog two options to choose from when he wants to burrow. He can choose if he wants to get a little wet or a little more dry. Again, do not make the substrate turn into mud. You don’t want your tomato frog sitting in water 24/7. Just spray it enough so you can make something like a snowball in your hand.


Crickets will use this substrate to lay their eggs in, so keep an eye on the crickets if you are releasing them into the enclosure. Make sure your tomato frog eats them all. You don’t want your enclosure or your house infested with baby crickets in a week or so.


Note: The information on this tomato frog care sheet is not a substitute for veterinary care.

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