The Real Masters Of Camouflage: Malayan Leaf Frogs

 The Real Masters Of Camouflage: Malayan Leaf Frogs

Are Malayan Horned Frogs Good Pets?


Malayan Horned Frogs need expert care. Health problems can come up quickly and be fatal for these frogs with improper husbandry. 

Masters Of Camouflage 


The Malayan horned frog has unique features that separates it from other amphibians. These frogs literally look like the fallen leaves on the forest floor of Southeastern Asia. Their coloring and the pointy horns over their eyes help them blend with the leaves. 


These frogs typically come in different shades of brown with irregular spots on their backs. This helps them be even more difficult to spot. Malayan frogs like to spend their time on the forest floor and rocks near water. 



Malayan frogs are very delicate in captivity. Their enclosure has to be a comfortable size for a pair and the conditions always need to be perfect. 


The recommended enclosure needs to be well ventilated and large enough for a pair to roam. Exo Terra’s 36″x 18″x 18″ has great ventilation already and will give two frogs plenty of space. The frogs also enjoy jumping around and they can leap from above to catch their prey. A tank that is tall will prevent them from hitting their heads. Many frogs can damage their horns from bumping into the top of their enclosures.


Substrate that is safe to use is coco fiber and leaf litter. Your frog will thrive in an enclosure that is bioactive as well. This means that you can use isopods or springtails that will eat the frog droppings. Using the safe substrate, leaves, and the isopods will create a very realistic environment for the frogs. 


You can also include little places to hide. Place small driftwood logs and rocks along the ground of the enclosure. The frogs will appreciate having places to hide and hunt for their food. 


The frogs will also benefit from having a shallow dish of water somewhere in the enclosure. The dish needs to be easy for the frog to climb in and out of. If they are struggling to get out, the dish is way too deep. The water needs to be cleaned out almost daily with dechlorinated tap water.  

Temperature And Humidity


The temperature and humidity are two of the most important factors in keeping your frogs happy and healthy. The temperature range for the enclosure needs to be between 65-72 degrees Fahrenheit. Since they like it at cooler temperatures, a heat lamp will not be necessary. They still need a 5.0 UVB bulb. 


The humidity needs to be between 65%-80%. Anything less will cause a lot of health issues with your frog. You can achieve this humidity by using the substrate that was recommended earlier. The shallow dish for soaking will also help. Their cage will need misted frequently as well. You can also install a fogger.


The enclosure should not be soaking wet. The substrate should just be lightly damp with a couple of dry spots. The enclosure being super wet will cause mold and other unwanted bacteria growth. Sphagnum moss and plants will also help retain the humidity.


Get a digital thermometer and a humidity gauge to accurately keep track of the enclosure. 



Feeding time is one of the best parts about owning a Malayan frog because of how they eat. They strike their prey with stealth and they eat really fast. It is pretty entertaining to watch. 


Your frog will eat different sized crickets depending on their size. The smaller the frog, the smaller the cricket needs to be. They also eat dubia roaches, horn worms, and silk worms. All of these insects need to be store-bought to prevent giving your frog parasites.


Make sure to gut load the insects. You can dust the insects with calcium powder and feed them insect food. This will give your frog extra nutrients when they have their feast. 


One method to feeding your frog is by using tongs. You can also allow a couple insects loose at a time and watch your frog eat. The Malayan frog also needs to be fed 3-4 times a week depending on the size of the meal and the frog.

More Facts


These frogs do not live a long time. If they are properly cared for, they can live around five years. The females are also larger than the males. You can also house more than one together. Three at most is recommended. The larger females will eat most of the food. It is important to make sure that the males are eating enough too. 

Wrapping Up


Maintaining the proper humidity and temperature is the hardest part of caring for this animal. Have a thermometer available. This frog requires a lot of misting as well and frequent feedings. Feeding the Malayan frog is extremely fun to watch and they are wonderful display animals to try and find in the leaves. 

Jade Messieh

Proud bearded dragon, tortoise, crested gecko, and green tree python mom. I've always been passionate about animals and hope to help other reptile & amphibian enthusiasts along their journey!

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