Using one of those vibrating feeder dishes for a frog?

Tim Benzedrine

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My nephew recently bought a young pacman frog. Having little experience with critters of any sort, he asked me to get it established for a couple of months. I agreed. I've been interested in getting one of my own, but I have to admit that I was a little uncertain whether I wanted the responsibility of taking one on for someone else, especially since I have had no experience with the species myself and must rely on general knowledge and care sheets on the 'net.

Anyway, my nephew has an aversion to feeding live prey to an animal. I know, I know, having that disposition he sure made a strange choice for a pet, but it was kind of an impulse buy. (The worst kind).
So, his solution is to try to get the frog to eat freeze-dried crickets. I have misgivings about those, but I suppose they would work. But I don't think the method of presentation he is planning on will work out.
He bought one of those remote-controlled vibrating dishes. You toss some dead crickets on the thing, push the remote button and the cricket corpses jiggle and do a little zombie dance. Oh, and the thing chirps too, I suppose for the extra suspicious critter.
"I dunno Ralph, those crickets are actin' pretty weird. Maybe we should pass....oh wait, they are chirping! Let's get 'em!"

Now, I can see such a set-up maybe working with leopard geckos and similar herps that are motivated by motion and stalk their prey, but am skeptical that an ambush hunter like a pacman frog would go for it. To say nothing that the thing vibrates hard enough that I think it could stress an animal out. The frog is currently between the size of a quarter and a half-dollar so if he did actually get on the dish, I imagine it'd be like getting on one of those vibrating beds they have at cheesy motels.

So, are there any thoughts on this, especially on the use of it with a pacman frog? Am I correct in being doubtful about their usefulness in this case?
 

Takumaku

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I have never seen a pacman use one of those vibrating dishes. But I have seen them eat those freeze dryed crickets before, so you still have hope. Just grab the cricket with a tweezer and way it in front of the frog. The frog will lug and attack the "moving" dead cricket.
 

Tim Benzedrine

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Yeah, I sort of figured that if he waved the dried crickets in front of the frog, it'd eat them. Of course it is my understanding that if you wave the family cat in front of them they will try to eat it also!:D
But they look so dessicated that they just don't look as if they would be as healthy as the fresh ones, hence my apprehension. It's probably a quite unfounded apprehension, of course.
While the frog is under MY care it'll be getting fresh bugs, though. And if I have it long enough, which I doubt I do, the occasional frozen pinkie.
However, until I see a credible source say that their pacmam gobbles crickets up off the vibrating dish, I still believe it will be a wash.
 

skinheaddave

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Of course it is my understanding that if you wave the family cat in front of them they will try to eat it also!:D
I can personally vouch that the 5" G.rosea in the next tank over is sufficient motivation for a face-plant into the glass.

But they look so dessicated that they just don't look as if they would be as healthy as the fresh ones,
I'm also skeptical here. Given that the dried crickets are probably pretty hard to gut-load, I'd suggest using a good powdered suplement, or maybe injecting them with some supplement/gut load before feeding.

Cheers,
Dave
 

Tim Benzedrine

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The jar my nephew bought has the following info on the label:

First we take fresh, frozen crickets and "dust" them with Zoo Med's Reptivite Reptile Vitamins. Then we send them through a slow drying process to retain much of the original nutritional value of the insect. After the drying process,, the crickets are coated with a special flavoring agent that reptiles go crazy over....

They don't mention it, but I'd think they would gut-load them before freezing them.
I dunno, maybe the stuff is a good option to have for those times when live crickets are unavailable for some reason, and I doubt they would do any harm, but I firmly believe that the vibrating dish was a waste of money.
 

Takumaku

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Translation: Rinse the crickets, pat them dry and freeze them for half an hour until they're dead. Then, put them in an oven set at 250 degrees until they're crunchy (about 15 to 20 minutes). Finally, the crickets are coated with a special flavoring agent that reptiles go crazy over...


;P
 

Thoth

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Another issue, I could think of is the high humidity of the enclosure eventually wreaking havoc with the electronics, killing the plate.
 

Tim Benzedrine

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That could be a problem. I doubt it is absolutely moisture-proof.

I think I convinced him to return the thing. I don't know if he really will, though. He came here and got it, and said he thought he would take it back, but I'm not convinced that he doesn't see it as a good alternative to feeding live. He left the jar of dried crickets, since they were opened, they probably wouldn't allow them to be returned.


The frog is doing well so far, eating 4 to 6 small gut-loaded crickets a day.
 
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