First, the substrate is one of the most important aspects of the PacMan frog terrarium. The correct substrate will be easy to maintain, function well for the PacMan frog, and help to create a natural jungle appearance. Read below to discover the best substrate for a PacMan frog.
The substrate is the bedding placed in the bottom of the PacMan frog terrarium. A proper substrate is very important for maintaining a healthy environment for the PacMan frog. Think of the substrate as the flooring in a home.
The best substrate for a PacMan frog is something that is easy to maintain, provides the PacMan frog a suitable place to dig and burrow, and closely resembles its natural environment. The substrate needs to be able to retain moisture and humidity, which are crucial for PacMan frogs.
Continue reading to find out more on the best substrate for a PacMan frog.
Coconut fiber is the finely ground up husks of coconuts, and arguably the most popular substrate used with PacMan frogs. It has excellent moisture retention which is very important for maintaining high humidity levels.
PacMan frogs love to burrow down into the substrate and wait for food to pass by. Coconut fiber is an excellent media for burrowing and digging animals. A three to four inch layer of coconut fiber will help to promote digging and burrowing.
Change coconut fiber substrates at least once per month to keep it fresh and bacteria-free.
Avoid using moss as the sole substrate in a PacMan frog terrarium. Use moss on top of other substrates as a decorative piece, and to assist with the retention of humidity.
Exo Terra Forest Moss is an excellent, easy to use, moss for PacMan frog terrariums. Simply tear the damp moss into small clumps and place around the terrarium. Avoid placing moss in areas where the PacMan frog is likely to feed.
Fir bark does well for holding moisture and humidity. It helps to promote burrowing, but does not hold tunnels as well as moist coconut fiber.
Exo Terra Reptile Forest Bark is a suitable fir bark substrate to use. Be careful of the small particles which are easy for the pacman frog to swallow when feeding.
A layer of fallen leaves found on the floor of forests and jungles is called leaf litter. PacMan frogs love to burrow down in leaf litter and use it as camouflage.
Most PacMan frog owners do not use leaf litter as the sole substrate, but on top of substrate to give the terrarium a realistic look. Randomly scatter the leaves around the terrarium to give a realistic, jungle appearance.
Leaves found outdoors that are not toxic to PacMan frogs, nor contain potentially harmful insects may be used as leaf litter. Magnolia leaves last a long time and are non-toxic, therefore making them a superb choice for leaf litter.
The cons to using aquarium gravel is it does not promote digging and burrowing like coconut fiber. The abrasive rocks can irritate the frog’s skin and cause lesions. Small rocks are susceptible to accidental swallowing by the frog when attempting to snatch food items.
Although aquarium gravel may be a decent temporary substitute substrate when cleaning the terrarium, it is not recommended for long-term substrate use with PacMan frogs.
The Best Substrate for a PacMan Frog
In our opinion, the best substrate to use for PacMan frogs is coconut fiber, such as Exo Terra Plantation Soil. This product performs well for PacMan frogs and is easy to maintain. Adding some moss and leaf litter to the Plantation Soil seems to provide the best balance of humidity retention and realistic appearance.