Spooky Facts About Poison Dart Frogs

  • Poison dart frogs are native to the rainforests of Central and South America. Many are threatened with extinction due to destruction of their rainforest habitat.
  • Each of the roughly 200 species of poison dart frogs has a unique and beautiful color pattern, thought to be useful in signaling to their potential predators their deadliness.
  • Frogs develop the poisons from their diet of spiders, ants, termites, centipedes, and beetles- but it is not known whether the poison originates from their prey or from the prey and plants of the prey themselves.
  • Captive frogs do not have the poison, and some species can be easily bred and are popular as pets.
  • The golden poison frog, Phyllobates terribilis, is the most toxic land animal in the world – it has enough venom to kill 10 adult men!
  • This species was used by the Choco people of Colombia to coat the tips of the blow darts used for hunting.
  • A single golden poison frog, only an inch long, can supply enough poison for 30 to 50 darts, and the dart’s poison remains active for up to a year.
  • Researchers have found this frog’s toxins to be 200 times more potent than morphine and could potentially be used in medicine.

Learn More About Poison Dart Frogs

Articles in National Geographic:

-Now We Know Why Poison Frogs Don’t Poison Themselves

Golden Poison Frogs

Learn more about poison dart frogs from the San Diego Zoo

Download this FROG POSTER



No, we do not have poison dart frogs where I live in Oregon. But, I shot this video recently at sunset while exploring a lake near my home in central Oregon. We were gleefully surprised by a wonderful natural phenomenon I have never witnessed before. Check it out on this short 2-minute video!