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Name: Dendrobates leucomelas '1996'. Leucomelas literally translates to white and black, due to the original specimen described presumably blanched of color from preservation. In the hobby, Dendrobates leucomelas are often called bumblebee dart frogs, yellow banded poison dart frogs, leucomelas, or simply 'leucs'. The '1996' tag simply refers to the year this line of animals was imported into the United States from Venezuela.
Recommended Vivarium Size: A 10 gallon aquarium is suitable for 1-2 Dendrobates leucomelas, but Josh's Frogs recommends a 20H or 18x18x18 Vivarium for 1-3 frogs. Not sure how to set up a vivarium? Please watch our video on How to Set Up a Vivarium.
Want to spice up your enclosure with live plants? Our experts have curated kits of easy-to-care-for and SAFE plants for your dart frogs. Check them out here!
Temperature: They can tolerate a temperature range of 65 F to 85 F, but prefer temperatures in the low to mid 70s. Temperatures over 85F are dangerous. Leucs are a bit more resistant to warmer temperatures compared to other species of poison dart frogs.
Humidity: Like most poison dart frogs, bumblebee dart frogs prefer a humidity range of 70 – 100%, but can tolerate humidity down to 50% for short periods of time if the frogs have access to water. Low humidity levels, especially without access to water, can quickly be fatal.
Size: Adult female leucomelas are larger, measuring in at approximately 1.5 inches. Male leucs are a bit smaller, averaging about 1.25 inches at maturity. In our experience, 1996 leucs tend to be a bit larger then most other Venezuelan leucomelas. All of the Dendrobates leucomelas froglets Josh's Frogs sells are well started juveniles, and measure at least 5/8 of an inch long.
Age: Dendrobates leucomelas is capable of living well over 20 years in captivity under ideal conditions, although a lifespan of 10 years is more common. All bumblebee dart frogs for sale at Josh's Frogs are well started juveniles, and are 2-3 months old.
Feeding: Like most poison dart frogs, leucs prefer smaller foods. All of the bumblebee poison dart frogs Josh's Frogs sells will readily eat Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies. Adult Dendrobates leucomelas will readily consume Drosophila hydei fruit flies and pinhead crickets. All ages of poison dart frogs will enjoy springtails and isopods. All feeder insects should be dusted with a vitamin/mineral supplement. For more information on what poison dart frogs can eat, please visit our How-To Guide on Feeding Poison Dart Frogs.
Sexing: Dendrobates leucomelas ' 1996' is not sexable until 10-12 months of age. Male leucs tend to be smaller than females, which often appear both longer and wider. Josh's Frogs sells 2-3 month old juveniles that are not sexable unless otherwise noted. For more information on sexing poison dart frogs, please visit our How-To Guide on Sexing Poison Dart Frogs.
Color/Pattern: A very variable poison dart frog, all Dendrobates leucomelas '1996' are mostly yellow and black in color with a varying degree of black spots and bands. The yellow can range from a very bright yellow to an orange color in some individuals. This particular leucomelas tends to be slightly more banded than your typical Venezuelan leucomelas, while not as banded as those that hail from British Guyana. Most leucs born orange will turn yellow with age. Josh's Frogs does not recommend, support, or endorse line breeding as we believe this leads to weaker captive animals and nature has done a wonderful job of creating an amazing variation in color and pattern of poison dart frogs already.
Social Behavior: This frog does well housed in groups, as long as enough space is provided. Josh's Frogs recommends approximately 10 gallons per frog. As they reach sexual maturity at 10-12 months of age, the social dynamic in a group of Dendrobates leucomelas may change, and female leucs may eat each other's eggs. For that reason, many breeders recommend keeping bumblebee poison dart frogs in pairs as adults. I routinely keep leucomelas in groups - they may not breed as well as they could in pairs, but a group of leucs is sure fun to watch! Josh's Frogs strongly recommends against housing different species/morphs of dart frogs - for the health of your pets, please avoid mixing! Josh's Frogs recommends purchasing multiple frogs if you are interested in breeding them – this greatly increases the chances of getting a pair.
Breeding: Breeding bumblebee poison dart frogs can be challenging at times, as this species tends to be a very seasonal breeder - frogs may need exposure to a dry period in order to 'get into the mood'. Generally, eggs are deposited on a smooth broad leaf, or on a petri dish under a cocohut. The eggs hatch into tadpoles, which then take 60-80 days to complete metamorphosis into miniature versions of the adults. For more information on breeding and raising poison dart frogs, please visit our How-To Guide on Breeding Poison Dart Frogs.
Natural Range: Dendrobates leucomelas occurs in Colombia, Brazil, British Guyana, and Venezeula. This morph is from Venezuela. Other than that, there are no specifis to the locale that this frog is from.
History in the Hobby: Our breeders were originally acquired from Cindy Dicken of Vivarium Concepts. They were imported from Venezuela in 1996, and show every trait that makes 'leucs' great frogs. There are great in groups, bold, and very vocal. They are also just a bit larger in size, and very vocal. Chances are that animals from this import have contributed genes to a large portion of the Venezuelan leucomelas in the US hobby.
Links of Interest:
Still not sure if Dendrobates leucomelas '1996' from Josh's Frogs are the right poison dart frog for you? Read the reviews below and see what other customers are saying!
After placing an order containing a live animal, you will receive a scheduling email containing our JotForm scheduling link to schedule your new pet's delivery date.
With this scheduling link, you will be able to schedule your order's delivery up to 30 days in advance. You will be able to choose a date of delivery for Tuesday-Saturday (Saturday arrival depends on the carrier's service availability) with the estimated time of arrival generally being 12pm, or 4:30pm for more rural areas. Overnight lows must be above 40°F to ship directly to you (or above 30°F for FedEx Ship Center pickups) as well as below 90°F by estimated time of arrival.
If you require further assistance, or prefer to talk to one of our Customer Service agents, please feel free to reach out to our [email protected] email or our phone line 1-800-691-8178.
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