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Pacman Frog Tank Setup – The Complete Guide

If you have determined to buy a Pacman frog but don’t know how to set up a tank for such frogs, we are here to help. These horned frogs got their name because of their big mouth that makes them able to catch their prey and swallow it as whole.

There are various species available in different sizes and colors when it comes to these frogs. If you really like them, you can have a whole collection of them at home. It turns out that you can easily set up a decorative tank for these ornamental beauties. Let us show you how!

What do Pacman Frogs Need in Their Tank?

Pacman frogs are not particularly demanding and have only a few basic needs that you need to learn more about. Setting up a terrarium that meets all of these needs is going to be a fun process. Moreover, you can probably get your own Pacman frog from the nearest pet store.

Two of the main things they need in the tank is humid air and a few inches of damp substrate. Of course, humidity and temperature have to be measured on a daily basis. With a few pieces of wood and some plants, you can even imitate the natural environment of your pet.

Now let’s see how to set up a complete Pacman frog tank from start to finish!

– 10 Gallon Terrarium or Fish Tank

Although Pacman frogs are rather big, they don’t move much throughout the day. Thus, buying a 10-gallon tank is more than enough for them. It should be made of glass or plastic, which will help you keep the humidity at bay.

When it comes to dimensions, your terrarium should be about 20 by 10 by 12 inches. This will allow some horizontal movement for your pet since your horned frog is not going to jump around.

You can read more about the best terrariums for pacman frogs, in the linked guide.

– Heater (Heating Mat)

The temperature in the tank should be always around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. In their natural habitat, Pacman frogs prefer this temperature the most. Placing a heating mat under the tank can help when it is not as warm in your room.

You can just turn it on at any time in order to control the overall temperature in the tank. Heating mats are available in pretty much all pet stores. The reason why you need to put it under the tank is because Pacman frogs like to burrow themselves in the substrate.

If you would place it under the substrate, there is a chance for your pet to burn himself.

– Light

Installing an UVB light or buying a terrarium kit that comes with one is the best source of lighting for Pacman frogs. An UVB light can make it easier for your pet to process vitamins such as calcium and will help your plants grow in the tank as well.

Keep in mind that the light should be switched off during nighttime. The best spot to attach it to is the middle of the lid so that the light can cover the whole aquarium. Using a regular light bulb is not bad either.

– Hygrometer and Thermometer

Monitoring the humidity is one of the most important things to do for amphibian keepers. With Pacman frogs, it is mandatory to install a hygrometer. Check it every now and then and if humidity is too high or too low, you need to correct it.

Of course, there are some mild fluctuations in humidity out in the wild too. It can be off a little bit but keeping it around 70% is the best. You can lower humidity by increasing ventilation and increase it by misting the tank.

The other useful gauge you need in a Pacman frog tank is the thermometer. By checking the temperature once or twice a day, you can ensure that it does not fluctuate that much. When it comes to Pacman frogs, 70 is the magic number you need to memorize because the temperature also has to be around 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

There are plenty of thermometer models available that can be attached to the terrarium glass. Pacman frogs tend to stand in water if the temperature is too high and burrow themselves in the substrate in case it is too cold.

– Substrate (Coco Husk Fiber)

The thickness of the substrate should be at least 2 inches. If you have a vertical tank, you can sometimes lay down about 5 inches of substrate if you want to. One of the main things that characterizes Pacman frogs is that they like to burrow themselves in the ground.

The most commonly used substrates are coconut husk fiber and potting soil. As long as it is something soil-like, it is fine because that means it can hold plenty of moisture. The more natural it is, the better because Pacman frogs are sensitive to fertilizers and similar additives.

The substrate also should not contain any bark or gravel because those might get swallowed by your pet.

– Water Dish

The next thing you need is to make some clean water available for your Pacman frog. Find a shallow bowl that is big enough so that your pet can comfortably stay in it. Horned frogs like to stand in water when they want to cool themselves down and soak in some of it in the meanwhile.

You either need to use some non-chlorinated water or dechlorinate it yourself before putting it in the tank. The water should not be too deep, reaching only your Pacman frog’s chin. They are the type of amphibians that don’t like to swim but rather juts sit in the water.

– Decoration (Hiding Place, Plants)

Of course, you are free to add rocks, branches and plants, either real or artificial. With these, you can set up an environment that imitates the natural habitat of your Pacman frog. Don’t shy away from using plenty of greenery and wooden accessories.

Your pet is going to need some places to hide if necessary. You need to hit the balance between your frog having enough space to move and the tank being well-decorated. The rule of thumb here is to fill only about half of the tank with these accessories and leave the other half empty.

When it comes to horned frogs, it is best not to leave all the sides of the terrarium uncovered. For example, you can use a background that depicts a rainforest on one side so that your frog doesn’t feel as exposed.

Moreover, it will only make your pet feel at home to be surrounded with things that are green and leafy.

How to Setup a Pacman Frog Tank?

Setting up a Pacman frog tank is easier than you might think. They are not particularly demanding except the humidity part. You need to monitor it every day and adjust it accordingly. Besides that, all horned frogs need is some damp substrate and a lot of greenery or plants.

Of course, they need to have enough space as well. Pacman frogs can greatly vary in size depending on which one of the species you choose. Doing the research and choosing the terrarium size accordingly is essential. For the average horned frog, you are going to need a 10-gallon tank.

How to Clean the Tank?

The first thing when it comes to Pacman frog tank maintenance is misting. Since humidity needs to be around 70% throughout the day, dampening the substrate at least once a day is very important. It is quite simple, as you just need a spray bottle filled with water for misting.

Just like the water in the bowl, it should be non-chlorinated, preferably bottled water. Make sure that the substrate is damp but not completely wet. As your frog keeps spending time in the water, it will become increasingly dirty.

One of your daily routines will be to add some fresh water to the bowl every day. Another thing that can make the whole tank dirty is uneaten food. Your Pacman frog might leave some pieces of insects or worms in the terrarium. Those pieces are usually easy to spot and easy to remove so keep an eye out for them.

In a couple of weeks, you are going to notice how the tank becomes dirtier and dirtier. Eventually, you will need to take your frog out and clean the whole tank with all the accessories. Take everything out, then clean, rinse and wipe dry everything. This needs to be done once or twice a month.

Wrapping Up

As you can see, there are not too many things to buy if you want to set up a Pacman frog tank. These horned frogs are really not demanding and there are only a few things to keep in mind when it comes to their care.

As long as you perform daily misting, picking up uneaten food and water changes, your pet is going to be fine. If you have problems with maintaining the right humidity, just try to cover the top of the tank using some foil. Eventually, you will find the right balance between ventilation and humidity.

If you follow our tips, you are going to be able to set up the perfect terrarium for your precious pet.

Pacman Frogs - Updated: January 8, 2021
avatar I’m Noah, chief editor at VIVO Pets and the proud owner of a playful, energetic husky (Max). I’ve been a volunteer at Rex Animal Rescue for over 2 years. I love learning and writing about different animals that can be kept as pets.

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