Fun Granular Poison Frog Facts For Kids

Ritwik Bhuyan
Nov 16, 2022 By Ritwik Bhuyan
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Monisha Kochhar
Fact-checked by Yashvee Patel
Granular poison frog facts about this Costa Rican species being one of the deadliest animals on the planet.

Oophaga granulifera, sometimes known as the granular poison frog, is a species of frog in the Dendrobatidae family. Earlier, this species was known as Dendrobates granuliferus.

From the Dendrobates, it was moved to the genus Oophaga later on in 1994. This species is one of the most known, beautiful, and common frog species in Costa Rica.

These frogs are a part of the larger species known as Poison dart frogs in the family of Dendrobatidae. Poison dart frogs come in different bright colors and are found all over Central and South America.

These species show aposematism and have aposematic coloration, which means that they advertise themselves to the predators not to attack or harm the granular poison dart frog.

That is why poison dart frogs have so many different colors in their bodies. This poison dart frog is highly toxic and kills its threats in seconds.

Even humans are susceptible to the poison of these poison dart frogs. The Granular poison dart frog belongs to the neotropical endemic family of these poison dart frogs and is distributed in Costa Rica and Panama specifically.

The genus name Oophaga comes from the Greek words 'oo' and 'phaga'. Here, 'Oo' means eggs and 'phaga' means eat.

It is given to this species as the larvae eat the infertile nourishment eggs laid by the mother frog. The subspecies name Granulifera comes from the Latin words 'granul' and 'fer'.

Granul means 'a little grain' and the meaning of 'fer' is 'carry'. The name is evident for the granular poison dart frog when we look at it closely.

The name dart frog is given to this species because the Native Americans' used the poison extracted from this species to poison their darts. There are over 170 species in this family of Dendrobatidae and the genus Oophaga has nine species in it, of which the granular poison frog is a part.

Read on for more, and check out the common frog and the Goliath frog too once you're done.

Granular Poison Frog Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a granular poison frog?

The granular poison frog are a part of the amphibian species of frogs.

What class of animal does a granular poison frog belong to?

These poison dart frogs belong to the class of Amphibia of the kingdom of Animalia.

How many granular poison frog are there in the world?

There is no census on the population of the granular poison dart frogs living in the world. But their numbers are decreasing alarmingly and the situation is dire for these frogs.

Where does a granular poison frog live?

This species of poison dart frog is mainly found on low mountains near Puntarenas in Costa Rica. Basically, they are situated in southeastern Costa Rica. They are also found in the adjacent southwestern region of Panama. A smaller population of this poison dart frog on the Atlantic coast of southeastern Costa Rica, near Panama.

What is a granular poison frog's habitat?

This species is mostly found in the tropical humid lowland forests. They are found near streams and have been seen in both undisturbed primary forest and secondary forest.

They are also found in plantations and bamboo habitats. Primary forests are forests that have all the native tree species and have no indication of human activities.

These occur naturally unlike the secondary forests where trees are regrown after human activities like irrigation or ranching. The Poison dart frog is more common in the primary forests than in any other places mentioned above.

Who do granular poison frog live with?

These frogs usually live in a small groups of four to five frogs. They usually live by themselves, barring some situations when smaller other species of frogs are seen living with them. A group of the Poison dart frog is called an 'army'.

How long does a granular poison frog live?

The granular poison frog lives for about 8-15 years in the wild.

How do they reproduce?

These frogs are diurnal terrestrial species and breed in the rainy season. In this season, the females respond to the calling mates.

The males call softly to lead the females to the oviposition site, which is usually elevated from the ground. Three to four eggs are laid by the females in curled-up dead leaves, under stones, twig forks, and leaf axils above the ground.

They are dedicated parents and the males usually guard the eggs. They also keep the eggs moist with the water from their bladder.

Females on the other hand continue laying small clutches of fertilized eggs under the previously laid eggs.

After hatching, the females carry the tadpoles to water-filled sites in plants. The tadpoles are often transferred one at a time, but there have been occasions of two tadpoles on the back of the mother frogs.

The brooding site for the young includes a leaf axil, broken stem of a palm tree, and shrub, all at a height above the ground. The tadpoles feed on the unfertilized eggs in the water, which were laid by the mother frog.

What is their conservation status?

The population of these frogs is decreasing alarmingly due to the fragmentation of their habitat and due to the destruction of the forests, it is threatened currently. Logging, agricultural practices, and a general expansion of the human settlements have posed a grave danger to the communities of this poison dart frog.

Although they are found mostly in the primary forests, they have also been seen in some protected areas like the Corcovado National Park and the Firestone Reserve in Costa Rica.

These species have been listed as Vulnerable by the IUCN because of their decreasing numbers and destruction of the rainforests. These frogs are also threatened by the pet trade but in a limited capacity.

Granular Poison Frog Fun Facts

What do granular poison frog look like?

The granular poison frog is a small frog with thin limbs. It has granular skin, hence the name. The color of the upper arms and the back of the frog is bright orange.

The head is also colored bright orange. The belly, lower arms, and hind legs are all colored bluish-green. The males also have a black vocal pouch in their body which lets them with the calling in their vocal rituals.

These frogs are brightly colored to be able to be aposematic, which gives a clear indication to other predators of the granular poison frog toxicity levels and a warning to stay away.

In Costa Rica, this species also has an olive-colored version, which looks equally beautiful. But due to the evergrowing natural forests' deforestation practices, the granular poison dart frog faces many grave dangers and is on a path of endangerment.

The frog also has a grayish-colored back on the rear side, which contrasts with the rest of its body.

The granular poison frog has a very vivid bright orange body with bluish-green legs and arms.

How cute are they?

The granular poison frog has a distinct beautiful coloration in its body that enhances the beauty of the amphibian.

How do they communicate?

The communication between these frogs is a little complicated. The male frog has a vocal pouch in its body which is used to give calls to the females during the breeding season. The calls are long and soft and are distinguishable from other species of the Dendrobatidae by their long notes.

How big is a granular poison frog?

The average length of a granular poison frog range from 0.7-0.9 in (18-22 mm). It is quite small and falls under one of the smallest in the family of frogs. The poison dart frogs are normally of the same size as this species.

How fast can a granular poison frog move?

The frogs do not move much from their own native place, but when necessary the poison dart frogs can hop at a speed of 10 mph (16.1 kph).

How much does a granular poison frog weigh?

The weight of this particular small species ranges from 1-1.1 oz (27-30 g).

What are their male and female names of the species?

The male and female sexes of this breed of frogs are not given specific names. They are all known by their genus name and the common name of the granular poison frog.

What would you call a baby granular poison frog?

The babies of all frogs are called tadpoles. There is no specific name given to the baby of this particular species. It is commonly known as a tadpole.

What do they eat?

These frogs normally feed on all kinds of insects like ants, spiders, and flies.

Are they poisonous?

These species are very poisonous and touching them would kill a person in 10 minutes. The grains in their skin are poisonous and it's evident by the bright colors in their body.

Would they make a good pet?

The pet trade has degraded its population all over the world. So keeping them as a pet is not going to be an easy task and is also not natural.

These frogs thrive in their natural habitat and would do much better in the rainforests. Appreciate the vivid colors of this species of frogs, but do not touch or go near them.

They might be the size of a paperclip but are a deadly species that can stop your heartbeat in a second.

They are found in the wet rainforests, so a meet and greet with them is fairly improbable. So leaving them alone is better, when these species are disappearing continuously due to frequent human encroachments in their habitats.

Did you know...

Poison dart frogs and poison arrow frogs are different names of the same species. They are known by these names as their venom was used by native Indians to make poison for the tip of their arrows.

These frogs are eaten by birds and some snakes. They are mostly not edible due to the level of toxicity in their body.

They are one of the deadliest animals in the world and kill anything in a few minutes due to their toxic skin.

How far can they jump?

Due to their small size, the frogs cannot jump long distances. They live in trees and cannot jump from tree to tree. Instead, they return to the ground to climb the next tree.

Why are they called granular poison frogs?

They are called granular poison frogs for the granular pattern in their body. These make the colorful species so deadly. The skin is poisonous to the core. Their skin needs moisture at all times.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other amphibians including the poison frog and pool frog.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our granular poison frog coloring pages.

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Written by Ritwik Bhuyan

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English

Ritwik Bhuyan picture

Ritwik BhuyanBachelor of Arts specializing in English

A skilled content writer, Ritwik holds a Bachelor's degree in English from Delhi University. He has refined his writing abilities through his past experience at PenVelope and his current role at Kidadl. In addition to his proficiency in writing, Ritwik has pursued his passion for flying by achieving CPL training and becoming a licensed commercial pilot. This diverse skill set highlights his commitment to exploring multiple fields. Ritwik's experience in the aviation industry has provided him with a unique perspective and attention to detail, which he brings to his writing.

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Fact-checked by Yashvee Patel

Bachelor of Business Management

Yashvee Patel picture

Yashvee PatelBachelor of Business Management

Yashvee has won awards for both her writing and badminton skills. She holds a business administration honors degree and has previously interned with social media clients and worked on content for an international student festival. Yashvee has excelled in academic competitions, ranking in the top 100 in the Unified International English Olympiad and placing second in an essay-writing competition. Additionally, she has won the inter-school singles badminton title for two consecutive years.

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