It may have been your favorite video game back in the 1980’s, but this iconic video game inspired a unique nickname for the South American horned frog, Argentine horned frog or Ornate Horned Frog. While its real names may be a mouthful, the name Pacman Frog, is certainly easier to remember and actually helps to describe the frog. The Pacman Frog has an unusually large mouth and abdomen which make it look similar to the Pac-Man character in this popular video game.
The Pacman Frog’s natural habitat is in the rain forests of Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina where it spends it time eating and hiding under leaves. This frog is certainly known for it’s appetite as it will try to eat anything that crosses its path. In the wild the Pacman Frog will eat large spiders, insects, small snakes, lizards and mice. It has sharp front teeth that allow it to devour it’s prey, or provide a painful bite to a human. Sometimes said to be an aggressive frog, it may actually bite if it feels threatened, but it may bite simply because it thinks that a finger is actually it’s next meal.
Unlike many frogs, the Pacman frog is not exactly the best swimmer and may enjoy just hanging around in shallow water, rather than swimming in deep water. The Pacman Frog has an incredible growth rate; From the time that it is born to the time that it is a fully formed adult is just 2 or 3 weeks and it will grow to 6 or 7 inches long within a few months!
If you choose to keep one as a pet, you will want to create a natural habitat for it. Keep only one Pacman frog in the enclosure, otherwise a larger frog may end up eating a smaller one. Try to setup a very damp, warm area, similar to its natural habitat. Avoid putting deep water anywhere in the enclosure as they may drown. They need to have water, but keep it shallow. Pacman Frogs love to hide under leaves in the wild and in captivity, you must provide a similar hiding spot for them. As for food, live crickets and small mice are best, but remember to purchase them at a pet store. Handle the Pacman Frog as little as possible as they do no enjoy being handled and it causes them to become stressed when handled.
Whether in the wild, or kept as a pet, a Pacman Frog is a beautiful and unique creature. With its large mouth and colorful skin, it is certainly a unique frog.