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Pacman Frog

Pacman Frog
Photo Information
Copyright: Anna Eksteen (Miss_Piggy) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2285 W: 5 N: 5300] (18714)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-10-16
Categories: Amphibians
Camera: Sony Cybershot DSC H9, Digital ISO 400
Exposure: f/3.2, 1/60 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): F r o g s [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2009-06-09 9:09
Viewed: 16330
Points: 90
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Ornate horned frog / Ceratophrys cranwelli

The way this frog is lying, one must look very closely to see the eyes, mouth, the tiny nostrils and the horns to realise that this is in fact a living creature and not just a piece of "something" I have photographed. As far as I know this is only the 2nd time that this frog featured on Trek Nature. The 1st time posted by Mario Rodriques (marod) in January 2006.

This photo of the Pacman frog was taken at Perry's Bridge Reptile Park in Hazyview, during our 2008 trip to Mpumalanga and the Kruger National Park. A lovely big specimen it was too which probably would make any Frenchman's mouth water.

Ceratophrys is a genus of frogs in the family Leptodactylidae (try saying that out loud!). They are also known as South American horned frogs or as "Pacman" frogs due to their characteristically large mouth and abdomen, thus resembling the video game character Pac-Man. They make up a number of species and are named horned frogs because of the large fleshy points above their eyes that resembles small horns.

The average lifespan of a Pacman frog is about 6 years, but they have been known to live up to 14 years in captivity.

They are voracious eaters, often eating insects, small mammals (such as mice), fish, other frogs, and small reptiles. A fully grown female Argentine Horned Frog (females are generally larger than males) can easily eat a grown rat.

Although these frogs can swallow animals almost half their size, they sometimes attempt to eat things larger than they are. A row of sharp teeth in their upper jaw makes it nearly impossible for them to release prey after taking it in their mouth, in some cases leading to death by choking.

Sexing the Pacman Frog is not easy as the only visible difference between the two sexes is size and the dark "beards" on males throats. Males grow between 6-11.5cm while females grow between 10-15cm in snout-vent length. A female Pacman frog will not chirp, or croak, whereas a male specimen of the same species will typically, in calling out for a mating partner.

Pacman frogs are considered hardy pets as their native habitat is a temperate climate. With proper lighting and misting, a generous variable in temperature and humidity makes the Pacman frog relatively easy to maintain, especially when compared to other reptiles and amphibians. While some consider the Pacman frog to be a fascinating pet, it is important to keep in mind that they are meant to be handled as little as possible, and remain relatively still in their enclosure.

General Overview
With their large mouth and abdomen and their desire to gobble up everything in their path, it's not hard to understand how the Pacman frog got its common name.

The Ornate horned frog, also known as the Argentine horned frog, the Argentine Wide-Mouth frog, or Bell horned frog, is the most common species of Horned frogs and hails from the rain forests of Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil. They are usually marked in bright green, brownish red or yellow blotches and spots.

Albino Pacman frogs are common with this as well, and share irregular small fleshy points and tiny bumps that cover the dorsal side, while the ventral side is smooth. Their mouths are as wide as their heads and are equipped with strong gripping jaws and a wide, pink fleshy tongue. Pacman frogs are famous for eating anything they can shove in their large jaws and swallowing items as large as themselves. Some have been found in the wild asphyxiated to death as they tried to make a meal out of an animal far too large to ingest.

The heavy-bodied and short-legged Pacman Frog is adapted to life in seasonally wet regions. In the wild, the Pacman Frog spends a good part of each year burrowed beneath the ground awaiting the onset of the rains and any prey that enters their path. Like all frogs, they sleep with their eyes open. Source

I hope you enjoyed looking at this photo as much as I took pleasure in taking it.

uleko, CatherineD, red45, nglen, chrisruth, eng55, jlinaresp, maurydv, goldyrs, Alex99, anel, flashpoint, Noisette, jconceicao, boreocypriensis, sranjan, bahadir, roges, tuslaw, techranger, pablominto, dejo, rkailas, TheMystic, avallaunius, extramundi has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2009-06-09 9:22]

Hello Anna,
What a wonderful frog. The details on its skin are great and the light on its body very beautiful. Great contrast against the environment. Excellent POV.

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2009-06-09 9:38]

Hello Anna,
This looks rather some kind of ice cream pudding than a frog! :-) Amazing and a super capture showing excellent details and colours. I can imagine that being so brightly coloured it would have to hide under the soil in the wild. Interesting to read the note about this species that's new to me!
TFS and best wishes, Ulla

Hello Anna,
Impressive frog, with a strange form and attitude. Excellent details and colours witch give a good vieuw on the texture. Good note too! Best regards,

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2009-06-09 11:03]

Hello Anne!

What a fantastic animal! For first look at thumbnail I thought this is kind of weird looking fungus. But this is more - kind of VERY weird looking frog :-) Great exposure, details and colours. This animal remainds me kind of pancake escaped from kitchen.

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2009-06-09 11:50]

Oooooh! What is it? Incredible!! I never seen nothing like that,it's very impressive.And the quality of your pic is the best way to understand and discover this fantastic kind of frog.Sharpness and colors really fantastics and the ebst point of view too!! My best compliments,have a nice day and thanks to show us this beauty of nature,Luciano

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2009-06-09 12:04]

Hi Anna. What a fantastic looking Frog. Its so large i have never seen anthing like this before. Great detail and natural colours. It got a very cross look on its face. well done TFS interesting notes as well.


Hi Anna

Well done on this love shot of your pacman frog. I'm not sure i would have spotted this is the wild?

The colours and detail on the frog are great and exposure is perfect.

Well done and TFS with us.


  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2009-06-09 13:49]

Hi Anna,
Very beutiful capture of this interesting frog.It!s new to me.I liked ezposure,details,sharpness and clarity a lot.Excellent work!
Thanks for posting..

Hello Anna.

A fantastic frog in every sense of the word! ... great control of contrast, imagine that maintaining the balance of the luminosity was complicated. A superb job, very informative and with an excellent note. Great detail and vibrant colors.

Grettings, regards & TFS!


Hello Anna,
what a fantastic picture of this frog, very good sharpness and impressive detail, very beautiful colours, i like the frontal POV and the nice composition.
Best regards

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2009-06-09 22:29]

Hi Anne.
What an attractive creature. It is clear I have never seen it before. You have represented it perfectly. Lights and details are fantastic, colours are awesome and diagonal composition of the shot cannot be more wonderful. Bravo. Well done.

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2009-06-10 0:36]

Hello Anna,
What a strange creature and what a special colour..amazing nature!
Intersting too to see its habitat, the way it is "integrated" in its surrrounding. I wonder if you saw it quickly. And for sure it isn't a piece of something!
Interesting posting. Merci!
Kind regards

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2009-06-10 5:39]

Hello Anna
A fine picture with an interesting species. Excellent details and beautiful colors.

It has been named very well, looks like a pacman figure, now if it would just smile, it could be a smiley as well.
Once again, great photo, Anna. I am getting very envious of your abilities, well done! Very sharp with amizing colors.

Hello Anna,

I show this to my children and they were really surprised by the look of this frog. It's the first time for us to see this specie. Very interesting indeed. Great capture and well done for sharing this.


hello Anna
SUPER sharpness picture
great details and beautiful colours
this is a beautiful frog
i like this picture
greeting lou

What a bizarre looking frog Anna.
It almost makes my Weta look attractive.
Cheers & TFS

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2009-06-10 13:23]

Hi Anna,
What a brilliant photo.
Really sharp.
Great lighting and colours.
Superb composition.
Next time you see him, tell him to lay off the pies for a while ;-)

Well done!


Hello Anna
a strange frog, but he have beautiful colors, it looks like a rock in this environment, no foot is visible and his eyes are also very good camouflaged
this shot have crisp clear details and nice luminosity
Have a good night

Hello Anne,

Fantastic capture of this animal.
Light,colous and definition are splendid.
Good notes

Ciao Anne, superb capture of amazing frog, i never see before, thanks, beautiful macro with wonderful colors, fine details and splendid sharpness, lovely composition, very well done, ciao Silvio

Hi Anna,
A lovely and perfect capture of this horned beauty from wonderful POV with excellent details on his skin and perfect lighting.
TFS and cheers,

Alucinante galeria de fantásticas e impresionantes imagenes...saludos

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2009-06-12 7:44]

Hello Anna,
Looking at this, I can't help thinking that there is some culinary association!
It is a fine capture of a Pacman Frog taken from a great POV with great sharpness and contrast against the BG.
If it weren't for the eyes it looks like an illustration of some gastronomic delicacy, perhaps like an illustration from one of your books!
Thanks and have a good weekend, you and Loot,

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-06-13 21:52]

Hi Anna,
a very special shot and superbs colour contrast. well presented with the textures seen in details. i like its semi-hidden eyes and the flat body posture, so special and unique.


Hello Anna,
Amazing shot of this unique handsome frog. I surfed Youtube to see them in action. Apparently quite aggressive & ever ready to fight back! Thanks for sharing this peculiar amphibian.

  • Great 
  • Marx44 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 172 W: 97 N: 926] (3891)
  • [2009-06-14 10:57]

Great shot Anna,
That is a Ceratophrys cranwelli. Great capture.
Well caught for a night shot
Thanks for posting

Hello Anna, a superb shot of this cute faty horned frog with nice composition and details.
TFS and regards,

  • Great 
  • roges Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 957 W: 0 N: 1329] (6264)
  • [2009-06-18 8:43]

Hallo Anna !

Excellent macro, with some excellent colors.

Hmmm...I don't call the subject beautiful, Anna! But the shot certainly is!
Very well seen, framed and beautifully presented!
I hope your projects are coming along well!

Hi Anna,
A nice capture of this beautiful Ornate horned frog. Excellent composition and sharp details. Very good notes. Thanks a lot for sharing.

hello anna,
its hard to believe that i am looking at a frog, it looks like some sea shell, very interesting capture, the details of this amphibian skin has been recorded well, nicely composed and natural colors,
well done,
tfs & regards

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2009-06-19 22:03]

Incredible image Anna,
This is a new one for me, such an odd looking frog!! The super fine detail and gorgeous colors make this an outstanding shot!!!

hello Anna!
really curious posture .... title
perfect for the actual similarity in features!
excellent definition and colors

best sERGIO

Witaj Aniu,
Very curious picture. I called before computer my husband. This princess pleased him in mud also. Incredibly charming picture. Frog and mud. Beautiful it has colours and is well visible.
Gratuluje i pozdrawiam - Roma

What an interesting and unusally different frog Anna. It reminds me a mass of slime mold. Detail is wonderful and lighting is fine for showing surface texture. Nicely done... TFS.


Hello Anna,

Well, well, well... that's a different one!
An amazing creature that seems to pose willingly, even if the looks never will win him any prizes hehehe...
But I bet he is regarded as good looking in his own neighbourhood and this is a great portrait, pin sharp details and outstanding colour reproduction!

Pablo -

  • Great 
  • dejo Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 344 W: 51 N: 520] (2242)
  • [2009-07-12 0:17]

Hello Anna,
fantastic capture!
beautiful details captured, great POV and sharpness!
Great photo!

hi Anna
What an interesting frog! Good POV - the strange shape does come alive in the picture! It actually resembles Toads quite a bit - rougher skin, adapated for drier climates. Not sure there are toads in South America, so these might be evolutionary equivalents in that part of the world (the so called new world)


Bravo Anna pour ce specimen si bien photographié.
Les couleurs sont très natuelles, et la netteté me plait.
à bientôt

how did I miss this amazing frog? TFS Ori

Great note to go with this well taken picture! If they didn't exist, one would have to invent them (I didn't know the name and thought at first you made that up, lol). He/she looks a little grouchy....

Interesting big ugli but preety frog.Good picture.Cheers.Alin.

Hi Ms. Anna,

Wonderfull and uniquely captured in good angle, I can clearly see the details of the subject. Wierd but a really beatiful creature, looks like a crispy has brown potato. Amazing!

Best regards,


What I need for friday night is a smile on my face, and this did it!
First with the title and after with the content. At first I thought that someone had done a "spanish omelette" with a frog :)))
It is a very nice capture, of a very interesting subjet, I had never seen before.
Thank you very much.

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