leopard froglets good eats for hen with chicks

Discussion in 'Chicken Behaviors and Egglaying' started by centrarchid, Jul 8, 2011.

  1. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    My leopard frog cohort of 2011 is dispersing from ponds in pasture. They are everywhere. Free ranging game rooster and hen were out catching grasshoppers for chicks. Rooster donates a large part of what he catches to hen and chicks. Sometimes catch is taken by hen then transferred, sometimes transfer directly from rooster to chicks. Both adults, but hen in particular, puts consideralble effort into catching leopard froglets they catch near tall fescue and puddles. Hen catches almost every one she jumps. The froglets are quickly dispatched and offered to chicks that are just over 14-days post-hatch. A chick will then run about with froglet that is nearly as large as its head. Chicks not yet able to swallow such an item whole so when bittie runs close to either hen or rooster, the adult snatches item away and begins to dismemember it before giving it to chicks again. Process repeated several times until froglet carcass broken up and consumed.
     
  2. Lollipop

    Lollipop Chillin' With My Peeps

    Great story, centrarchid. Don`t be so sure the chicks can`t swallow a froglet. Some time back, when I still lived in FL, one of my chicks, just a few days old, caught what was locally called a "mole cricket". Now a mole cricket looks about like a whole peanut in the shell. Maybe an inch and a half long and 3/8`s to a half inch around, and with legs. After the obligatory chase with siblings in hot persuit, this little Spanish Game chick proceeded to swallow the whole thing right in front of me. I couldn`t believe it. It certainly was longer than the chicks head. Froglets are excellent feed. Wish I had some, LOL.......Pop
     
  3. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Pop,

    We have mole crickets as well but I have not witnessed my birds eating them. Ours I think more strongly associated with waters edge and very seldom come above ground. We have a large number of grasshopper species and individuals. Chicks can choke down a pretty big one if the grasshopper just molted but otherwise it has to be dismembered first. I have not seen it yet this year but my games seem adept at catching and consuming indigo bunting fledglings and what I think are marsh wrens. It would be interesting to see if those are offered to chicks as well.
     
  4. Lollipop

    Lollipop Chillin' With My Peeps

    Didn`t know if that was a local term or not. Most folks don`t seem to know what that is. Meat of anykind is good for fowl. All this crapola about meat free diets is for city folks. Vegans, if ya will. Those people shouldn`t own chickens, or dogs and/or cats for that matter. Sorry, didn`t mean to get started there. It always amazes me what chickens can find to eat on their own. Ain`t they fun?........Pop
     
  5. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    This is what I call a mole cricket. If my book learning still accurate, then your southern version gets wings so it can fly.
    [​IMG]


    My birds eat some weird stuff, unless it has red on it. Mine will not eat the red-eyed perodic cicadas even though I know from experience while riding motorcycle that they are not too bad. I think they do eat toadlets as the mowed portions of yard supported literally thousands of the little buggers until a month ago. The chickens seemed partial to them even though as adults and tadpoles they are toxic to dogs and fish.
     
  6. Lollipop

    Lollipop Chillin' With My Peeps

    LOL, That`s it!! Never saw one that close, so I can`t vouch for the wings, but I didn`t think they do.
    On the other subject, are we talking Leapard Frogs, or toads? I wouldn`t think that leapard Frogs would be toxic at any stage. Toads however, would be when past the tadpole stage. In South FL. and maybe other places, there is a toad called the Buffalero Toad, supposedly imported from South America. The things can reach the size of a football and are quite deadly to dogs that aren`t schooled (hard knox) in the defences of toads. I had a pond on my property and every spring the toadlets would saturate the yard. When walking into the yard, it would appear that the whole yard suddenly moved. Sounds like what you are experiencing. The good part is that few reach much beyond that stage as the adults consume copious amounts of them. Interresting subject. I`m surprised that a few others have not joined in.......Pop
     
  7. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    I have at least 4 toad species on property. I live at border of Missouri river bottoms and Ozarks in zone of overlap. All occur as black tadpoles that even largemouth bass and warmouth (two fishes that eat even toxic bullfrog tadpoles) will not eat. Leopard frogs do not appear toxic or fowl tasting as every critter that I see eat them does whole thing. When oppossums eat our American toads, they skin them leaving skin behind. I have not seen the Buffalero Toad but it seems similar to a cane toad which is also toxic. Our toads are nasty enough to make a dog go into a slobbering fit and 18 month old children (cousin) seem to find them fowl tasting as well. Many folks may not recognize toadlets as anything more than insects. At least that seems to be the perception of my co-workers that seem to have a difficult time bending down. Nutritionally, these amphibians can be pretty important, especially when hen catches a couple dozen each day.
     
  8. welasharon

    welasharon Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am not at all versed in toad/frog naming but my cuckoo marans ate one that seemed to be around three inches long. I say seemed to be because all I could see was her crop jumping occasionally. She ate it live. I had to leave the pen...

    On an earlier note...is it common for biddy raised chicks to get cocci? Or at least to get it to the point it is an issue?
    sharon
     
  9. centrarchid

    centrarchid Chicken Obsessed

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    Quote:As I understand it, cocci are ubiquitus in soil. As soon as chicks come into contact with soil or feces of birds that have been in contact with soil they become infected. Some chicks handle infection with very little impact, others it kills over a few days. My dominique and dominique cross chicks slow in growth during early infiection but as immmunue system kicks in growth resumes. My American games it hammers causing > 90% mortality. I have resorted to treatment for short-term using Corvid and medicated feeds but even then 1/3 are lost and 1/2 of survivors will be culled in fall owing to stunting. So yes, an issue that will have to be resolved.
     

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