Doyle's Dart Den


Dendrobates galactonotus
Updated 03/09/99

If you have information you think might be of interest to others, please see the Species Data Form.

Correct Name:  Dendrobates galactonotus
First Description by:  Steindachner, 1864
What Name Means:  Dendro g= tree / bates g = one that walks or haunts / glacto G = milk (I don't think this is correct)
Common Name:  Splash-Backed Poison Frog

Physical Description
Size range: 1.26 to 1.65 inches (32  to 42 mm)
Weight range: __ g
Average size of female:  inches  (___  mm)
Average weight of female: __ g
Average size of male: ____ inches  (___mm)
Average weight of male:__g
How to identify sexes:  Similar to D. leucomelas when looking at body form.  The female tends to be larger and fatter.  The difference of the toe pads is not so obvious.
Description:  See the Dendrobates galactonotus web page by Bernd Pieper & Christian Som
Other Morphs:
Call:  Soft buzz like D. auratus but 3 times longer.

Biotype and Distribution
Distribution:  Brazil - South of the Amazon river
Biotype:  Tropical lowland forest
Population density:  ___
Day Temperature:  ____
Night Temperature :  ____
Relative humidity during dry season:  ______ %
Rainy season:
Are frogs sitting in sunlight:  Yes
When is their active time:  Morning and afternoon
What kinds of food in wild:

Recommended dimension:  L = 20 in. (50 cm) W= 20 in ( 50 cm) H= 20 in (50 cm)
Day Temperature:  ____
Night Temperature :  ____
Terrarium landscaping:  Stones, wood roots, and moss (Bernd Pieper)
Average age in terrarium:  ___ years
Maximum age in terrarium:  __ years
Behavior - outgoing or reclusive:  50 / 50 (Bernd Pieper)  - more reclusive (Kay Klausing)
Parts of Vivarium occupied:  ______
How often misted:  ______

Eggs/clutch size:  3 - 14 (3-6 per Kay Klausing)
Where are eggs placed:  In film canisters or under coconut huts
Sensitive to light:
Development time for eggs:  14 days
Development time for tadpoles:  70 days
Percent of Eggs to develop into tadpoles:  80 %
Percent of tadpoles that develop into froglets: 75 %
Percent of froglets that reach maturity: 90 %
Age of maturity: _____ months
Food for tadpoles: mixed fish food
Tadpoles kept singly or in groups:  singly
Are F1 offspring different from wild caught parents: No

Methods to induce breeding:  Alot of rain

General notes about specie: ______________

Other sites with information or photos:
                       Dendrobates galactonotus web page by Bernd Pieper & Christian Som

Sources of information:
Bernd Pieper:
Kay Klausing:

Hi Callie,
Since there has been just one reply to your question, I post my experiences with D. galactonotus.  There seem to be 5 morphs in the US hobby right now: orange-back, red, 95% orange/yellow, 99% orange and lemon-yellow (I do have the first 3).  I am not sure how distinct these morphs are, since when you look at the Swedish, Jordi's and Cristian's web sites you see animals with color and pattern, which fall between what described above.  There are more in European countries, among them the "moonshine" , a porcelain-white and a yellow with blue legs morph. Since are a of distribution is more than 3 times the size of D. tinctorius, I would
expect many more to surface in the future.

They are very easy to care for along the same husbandry parameters as D. tinctorius. They are somewhat picky eaters and will refuse larger food items, like small waxworms and mealmoth larvae (which a similar sized juvenile tinctorius will devour in a split second). The 95% ornage/yellow morph grows a little large and is a more aggressive feeder.  I found that show the same intrasexual aggression as tinctorius, but will form a stable hierarchy after a while. However, the animals do clearly better when kept in pairs. More importantly, they breed much better when kept in pairs and are in fact very easy to breed and despite a small clutch size (4-5 eggs, more for the 95% morph) quite prolific.

I don't think they are as shy as many say. Mine are almost always out and about, although unlike D. tinctorius, go into hiding during tank maintenance.  The NAIB has established that the short hind leg syndrome Lasse mentioned is due to incorrect vitamin/mineral supplementation of the breeders. I have not encountered this problem. I however have had case of spindly-leg when the temperature of the tadpole rearing water exceeds a certain temperature (about 77F or 25C).

That's it for now. Feel free to e-mail privately if you have more questions.

Date: Tue, 9 Nov 1999 20:10:39 -0700
Subject: To Callie- from Sweden, D. galactonotus info

Dear Callie,

In answer to your question about D. galactonotus:

Galactonotus is a quite easy frog to hold, either in a group or in pair.

They seem to enjoy being in a group;  they don"t fight  much, but often sit together.  In contrary to E.G.  tinctorius or azureus, species that you shouldn't have two females together (if you also have a male).  Galactonotus behavior is more like auratus or leucomelas, species that you also can hold together in small groups.  Galactonotus is a little shy -  like auratus - and they stay mostly on the ground.  Here in Sweden we  often keep them together with some small species from the quinquevittatus-group.  A problem we have had with galactonotus is the rather frequent occurring of 'short hind legs' in the offspring. We do not know what causes this, but think it can be a result of nutritional shortcomings. Extreme cases show normal front legs but no hind legs!  We call these 'mermaid tads'.  Three breeders in Sweden have had this type of problem; never with any  other species, however.

The eggs of galactonotus look like they are unfertilized even when they are perfectly healthy! So, be careful not to throw them away by mistake.

This is what we know from breeding the "dark red" morph and the "orange red" morph. You can se pictures of different color morphs in the "Bildarkivet" in our home page:   Unfortunately, the text is still only in Swedish....

We will be happy to answer any questions that you may have.

Lasse Nitare
Chairman, the Swedish Dendrobates Society

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