Living Material FAQs

Living Material FAQs

Living Material FAQs

Q: How long are my algae/protist/bacteria cultures viable and how to do I store them?

A: In general, bacteria cultures are viable for 2-3 weeks with caps loosened and stored at room temperature.  For algae and protozoa, the cultures are viable for 5-6 days with caps loosened and stored at room temperature. . There are exceptions, but customers should receive other instruction with those specific products.  For more information, check out the product Care Guide(s). 

For a complete list of our care guides, Click Here:  Product Support | Teacher Resources |


Q:  How many organisms are in a live culture of Bacteria, Algae, or Protozoa?

A: We are not able to provide organism counts on live cultures. We do advise that at least 30 students should be able to take a sample, place it on a slide and view the organism.


Q: How do I dispose of used microbiology materials?

A: The most effective way to kill microbes is to autoclave all materials. In the absence of an autoclave, materials can be covered in a 10% bleach solution or 70% ethanol overnight, placed in a sealable bag and discarded in the solid waste bin.


Q: My painted lady larvae/caterpillars have not made chrysalis yet and it has been over a week. What do I do?

A: The larvae will mature in 5-10 days, sometimes it takes longer than that. The growth process is highly dependent on temperature and also on what stage the larvae were when they were sent to you. As long as the caterpillars are growing and are not showing signs of drying out, they should reach the chrysalis stage soon. It is normal for all of the food to be consumed. We send more than enough food, calorie-wise, for the caterpillars to complete the chrysalis stage.

Check out the Painted Lady Care Guide: Care Guide: Painted Lady Butterfly |


Q: What kind of tadpoles did you send me?

A: We do not track which type of tadpoles go into a specific order. The type of tadpoles in each order is identified on the bag label.


Q: How long will it take my tadpoles to turn into frogs?

A: Depending on the type you have, spring peeper and toad tadpoles transform into small adults in 6 to 8 weeks. Other species, including Xenopus, take 10 to 14 weeks. Bullfrog tadpoles may take 4 to 18 months to metamorphose.

General guidelines on metamorphosis time are in the FAQ section of the tadpole care guide. Use this link to access the care guide:


Q: Why is my(Elodea) plant dark or brown?

A: Depending on the time of year and the location your plant was collected from, it may appear dark or brown in color. Unless the plant is also falling apart or mushy to the touch then it is perfectly healthy. Your plant will continue to turn more green given time and enough light.

Care guide

This care sheet provides general information only for handling Carolina™ bacterial cultures. When you work with bacteria, it is imperative that you use sterile techniques at all times. Failing to use sterile techniques can contaminate cultures and work areas, and cause health and safety risks. See our Carolina™ Techniques for Studying Bacteria and Fungi Manual (item #154664) for descriptions of sterile techniques and standard practices for handling bacterial cultures.
Immediate care and handling
When your bacterial cultures arrive, immediately open the shipping container and remove the cultures. We ship cultures in tubes, plates, and as MicroKwik Culture® freeze-dried cells. Visually inspect each culture. Ensure that tubes are intact with caps securely in place, plates have no cracks and lids are secured by tape, and plastic bags containing MicroKwik Culture® cells are securely closed with the enclosed tube and vial intact.

You must seal any culture damaged during shipment—and anything it contaminated—in an autoclavable bag, and then sterilize it by autoclaving or soaking all contaminated materials in disinfectant. Note: Never discard a damaged, unsterilized culture in the trash. Know and follow your school or district’s guidelines for proper disposal. Contact our Customer Service at 800.334.5551 for a replacement of your damaged culture. It will help to have your order number available when you call.

Hold most cultures at room temperature, 20 to 22° C (68 to 73° F). For tube cultures, loosen the cap and keep the culture tube upright in a test tube rack or beaker. For best results, use cultures within 3 to 5 days of receipt; however, most bacterial cultures remain usable for up to 4 weeks when held at room temperature. Keep in mind that Carolina provides a variety of bacterial cultures and some have very specific care and handling needs that differ from these general guidelines. Vibrio fischeri, for example, must be kept in the dark and subcultured 2 to 3 times per week to maintain bioluminescence.

Maintaining and culturing
Eventually your bacterial culture will deplete the nutrients of the medium in or on which it is growing and will need subculturing. Before working with bacterial cultures, wash your hands with soap and water, ensure that the work area is draft free, and wipe the work surface with 70% alcohol or similar disinfectant. Note: Always check the culture for signs of contamination immediately prior to using. Never work in an area where food is prepared or consumed.

Transfer broth cultures to fresh broth using a sterile pipet or loop or streak onto agar using a sterile inoculating loop. For faster growth, you can incubate most cultures at 25 to 30° C (77 to 86° F). After making the transfers, clean the work area with disinfectant and wash your hands again. Either autoclave the old stock cultures and glassware, or cover them with disinfectant overnight. We recommend the use of Clavies® Autoclavable Bags (item #831642) for disposal.

In the US the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) sets standards for the safe handling of microorganisms according to their Biosafety Level (BSL). There are 4 Biosafety Levels with BSL-1 being the lowest risk microorganisms and BSL-4 being the highest risk. Bacterial cultures provided by Carolina Biological Supply Company fall into BSL-1 and BSL-2. Our catalog and online listings identify BSL-2 bacterial cultures as pathogens. They are only available as MicroKwik Culture® freeze-dried cells, and we can only ship them to colleges and universities. Cultures not identified in our listings as pathogens are BSL-1.

The CDC standards for working with BSL-1 microorganisms include the following:
[bulleted list]
Follow all standard microbiological practices.
Work can be performed on an open lab bench or table.
Wear personal protective equipment (PPE), i.e., lab coats, gloves, and eye protection, as needed.
A sink for hand washing.
Doors that separate the lab room from the rest of the facility.

For working with BLS-2 microorganisms the CDC recommends all of the above, plus the following:
[bulleted list]
Restricted access to the lab room while cultures are being used.
PPE to include face shields as needed.
All procedures that can produce a splash or an aerosol must be performed within a biological safety cabinet.
An autoclave or other method of decontamination for proper disposal.
Self-closing doors that separate the lab room from the rest of the facility.
An eyewash station.

For a fuller discussion of CDC criteria for handling microorganisms see the following link: [link].

Which agar should I use for my bacterial cultures?
In Carolina’s print and online catalogs, the product descriptions for our bacterial cultures include the type of nutrient medium that we use for each culture. This information also appears on the label affixed to the culture. A wide range of bacteria will grow on Nutrient Agar (item #821862) and Tryptic Soy Agar (item #822022).

Can I pour my own plates if I don’t have an autoclave?
See our Nutrient Agar Bottle (item #776360) and other prepared media bottles. A bottle containing 125 mL of medium will pour 4 to 5 standard 100 × 15-mm plates. Watch our “How to Melt and Pour Agar Plates” video (at for a demonstration of the technique.
Should I order a tube, plate, or MicroKwik Culture®?
Tube cultures are best for stock. A tube culture is often streaked on a plate and incubated before lab use. Order a plate culture for convenience and immediate use. You can receive a plate culture and use it in a lab on the same day. A MicroKwik Culture® is best used for longer-term storage and to receive a culture of a pathogen. A MicroKwik Culture® can be held at room temperature for up to 2 months before being activated or for 6 to 8 months refrigerated.

Which cultures should I order for antibiotic testing?
Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria often give different results when tested against the same antibiotic. For that reason, we recommend testing against Bacillus cereus (item #154872), which is Gram-positive, and Escherichia coli (item #155068), which is Gram-negative. We recommend broth cultures because this makes it easier to spread the culture over the surface of an agar plate. See our Carolina BioKits®: Antibiotic Sensitivity kit (item #154740) for more information.
You recommend holding a culture at room temperature, but the recommended temperature for Escherichia coli (item #155065) is given in your catalog as 37° C. Why is that?
Thirty-seven degrees C is the incubation temperature, the temperature needed for maximum culture growth. The culture is mature when we ship it out and does not need further incubation. Maintaining the culture at room temperature allows you to hold it longer before use.

Care guide

Elodea densa is an aquatic plant widely used in biology for observation of plant cells and for studies of photosynthesis. This CareSheet covers care of Elodea for lab use. For use of Elodea as an aquarium plant, see our Aquatic Plants Carolina™ CareSheet.

Immediate care and handling

We ship Elodea (items #162101, #162102, and #162103) in a plastic bag without water. (The plant is also available as Elodea Tips [item #157340] in a jar filled with water.) Open the bag and examine the plants. Elodea can vary in color from dark brown to bright green. As long as the plants are not mushy and breaking down, they are healthy. Rinse the plants under running tap water, then shake them gently to remove excess water before use.

Care of the plants before your lab

Although you can use the plants immediately after rinsing them, it is usually best to transfer them to water and put them under lights for 2 days before using them in a lab. This allows the plants time to recover from any shipping shock. Shallow containers with a broad surface area are best. Use either tap water treated to remove chlorine and chloramines (see our “General Guidelines on Living Materials from Carolina Biological Supply Company” on for details) or spring water. We do not recommend distilled or deionized water, as these lack minerals needed by the plants. Clip the rubber bands from the stems and spread the plants into a single layer in the water. A fluorescent light bank (such as our item #158999) or a 23- to 32-W compact fluorescent bulb in a desk lamp will provide the intense light needed by the plants.

If you must keep the plants for several days before lab use, replace about ¼ of the water every third day. This is to prevent mineral depletion.

Using Elodea to observe plant cells, chloroplasts, and cyclosis

Have students remove, with forceps, a leaf from near the growing tip of an Elodea plant. Place this leaf on a microscope slide in a couple drops of water and add a coverslip. Observe under a microscope at 40×, 100×, and 400×. Students will see cell walls and chloroplasts. They may notice that the chloroplasts of many cells are located along the inner cell wall. This is because a large vacuole occupies the central portion of the cell and tightly presses the cytoplasm against the cell wall.

Students will sometimes notice that the chloroplasts in a cell are moving. This results from movement of the cytoplasm, which is termed cyclosis. As the cytoplasm flows, the chloroplasts move along with it. Light and heat stimulate cyclosis. Tungsten or halogen substage lamps produce both heat and light, and after 2 to 3 minutes students will begin to observe cyclosis. If your microscopes have fluorescent or LED lamps, these produce very little heat and often will not stimulate cyclosis. To provide the needed heat, use a desk lamp equipped with a halogen bulb. Position the lamp so that it shines down on the lab bench. After a few minutes, the surface of the lab bench should become noticeably warm to the touch. Students can place their slides on this warm surface for 3 minutes and then observe for signs of cyclosis. A somewhat better arrangement is to position the lamp so that it shines directly onto the stage of a microscope, thus heating the slide as students view it. Although not all slides may show cyclosis, enough will so that students can share them and see the movement.

Substitutes for Elodea densa

Several states ban Elodea densa. If you live in one of those states, we must ship you a substitute. Here is some information on the plants we commonly send as substitutes.

Elodea canadensis (item #162111): This native plant is similar in appearance to E. densa but is a smaller plant and the leaves typically do not cluster as closely on the stem. Students can observe cells, cell walls, and cyclosis as with E. densa. E. canadensis is a good oxygen producer for studies of photosynthesis and can be shipped to most states. It is often unavailable in the winter months.

Elodea najas: Almost identical in appearance to Elodea densa and can substitute for all uses of that plant. Students can observe cells, cell walls, and cyclosis as with E. densa. E. najas is a good oxygen producer for studies of photosynthesis and can be shipped to all states. There are times when it is unavailable.

Chara (item #162120): The plants (Chara is a multicellular green algae) consist of stems with whorls of branchlets. It is a good oxygen producer for studies of photosynthesis. When viewed under magnification, the internodal cells (stems) show cyclosis; however, this is visualized as streaming of granules within the cytoplasm, not as movement of chloroplasts. The large chloroplast, which forms a background of green, does not move. Chara can be shipped to all states. Chara often has a strong odor, something like garlic. This does not indicate that the plants are dead or decaying.


Elodea densa is a non-native plant that is invasive in many areas. After lab use, add leftover plants to an aquarium. Otherwise, seal the plants in a plastic bag, freeze, and discard the unopened bag in the trash.


How can I use Elodea to study photosynthesis?
During photosynthesis, the plant absorbs carbon dioxide from the water and releases oxygen. Since oxygen is much less soluble in water than is carbon dioxide, the water quickly saturates with oxygen and bubbles form. The number of bubbles released per minute measures the rate of photosynthesis. Alternately, use a simple volumeter to measure the increase in volume of gas caused by the release of oxygen.

What is the difference between Elodea (item #162101) and Elodea Tips (item #157340)?
Elodea (item #162101) consists of Elodea sprigs that are about 11 cm (4¼”) in length. We recommend these for aquarium plants and for studies of photosynthesis, although they can be used also for cell studies. Elodea Tips (item #157340) are the terminal 3- to 4-cm ends cut from sprigs. We recommend these as best for cell studies.

Can I substitute other plants for Elodea densa?
For photosynthesis studies, almost any aquatic plant will work. These include Ludwigia (item #162141), Cabomba (item #162022), Myriophyllum (item #162161), Ceratophyllum (item #162041), and Sagittaria (item #162201). For easy viewing of plant cells with chloroplasts, consider Fern Prothallia (item #156877).


We hope not, but if so, contact us. We want you to have a good experience.

Orders and replacements: 800.334.5551, then select Customer Service.
Technical support and questions:

Care guide

Immediate care and handling

When your protozoa culture arrives, immediately open the shipping container, remove the culture jars, and inspect them for any signs of damage. Once you have verified that the shipment is intact and not damaged, loosen the lids on the jars. Aerate the cultures using the plastic pipet supplied with each individual culture. Use a different pipet for each culture, and write the name of the culture on each to avoid contamination. Aerating helps replace the oxygen depleted during shipment. To aerate, place the top of a pipet into the culture water and squeeze the bulb, bubbling air into the water. Withdraw the pipet and release the bulb, allowing it to refill with air. Repeat the above process 4 more times.

Sampling and observation

Allow 15 to 20 minutes after aeration for the organisms to settle. Inspect the culture using a stereomicroscope and low illumination. Using the stereoscope will allow you pinpoint the areas where the organisms are concentrated. In preparing slides for viewing, students should obtain their samples from those areas. Using the stereoscope and designated pipet for that culture, students can pick out a single organism (or group of organisms) for their individual slides.

Many protozoans (such as Paramecia) concentrate in areas where food particles are abundant. These areas are visible as fuzzy debris within the culture. Amoeba can be difficult to locate at first because they move slowly and lack a constant shape. To find them, focus on the bottom of the jar after it has been sitting undisturbed for at least 15 minutes. Watch through the stereomicroscope for a few seconds and you should begin to see dozens of Amoeba as they creep slowly across the bottom. You will also see a faster moving organism called Chilomonas (a tiny flagellate) moving about the Amoeba culture. Chilomonas serves as a food source for the Amoeba. Stentor tends to attach to the sides of the culture jar. Other varieties may concentrate near the surface of the water.

To pick up an organism (or organisms), squeeze the pipet bulb before inserting the pipet into the culture. Release the bulb when the pipet’s tip is close to the concentration of protozoans. Keep the pipet vertical as you are drawing the sample to avoid stirring up the culture and scattering the organisms. Do not squirt the pipet water back into the culture.

One drop should contain more than enough organisms for a slide mount. After adding a coverslip, examine the slide using the microscope’s lowest magnification. After protozoans have been located, high magnification can be used to observe the organisms in greater detail. Some protozoans, mainly ciliates, move so rapidly that it can be difficult to keep them in the field of view under high-power magnification. A quieting solution, such as Protoslo® (item #885141), slows the ciliates’ movement without killing them. Add 1 drop of Protoslo® to a drop of culture on a slide, mix well, add a coverslip, and observe.

Care and culturing

Photosynthetic protozoans (Euglena and Volvox) need light to manufacture their own food. Use either indirect natural light or a light bank (such as our item #158999) to provide light for these organisms.

Never place protozoa cultures in a refrigerator or in direct sunlight. Maintain cultures between 20 and 22° C (68 and 72° F), with the lid placed lightly over the mouth of the jar. Plan to use the culture as soon after receipt as possible.

Many protozoans are easily cultured. For further instructions on how to culture protozoa, refer to the Carolina Protozoa and Invertebrates Manual.


How long can I keep my cultures before using them?

If possible, use them within 2 to 3 days of receipt; however, most protozoan cultures will remain useable for a week or longer.

Will the cultures last longer if kept in the refrigerator?

We do not recommend refrigeration or rapid temperature changes of any kind for our cultures.

Are these protozoans dangerous?

No, the protozoans in our collection are for general classroom use. They are not parasitic or pathogenic in any way.

My cultures arrived on a Friday. Can I keep them over the weekend and use them for class on Monday?

Remove the cultures from their shipping container and care for them as directed in the “Immediate care and handling” section. Do not leave them in the unopened shipping container. Photosynthetic forms need light. Heterotrophic forms are shipped with enough food in their jar to maintain the culture for an extended period of time. You may even find that the cultures improve when left over the weekend because they have had time to recover from the shipping process.

My students are not finding any protozoans. What should I do?

The culture may need to be agitated to redistribute the protozoans. Ensure students are following the sampling procedures described in the “Sampling and observation” section. Protozoan species differ greatly in size. If students have previously observed larger protozoa, such as Paramecium, remind them to look for smaller organisms when searching for Euglena. Finally, examine the culture under a stereomicroscope to locate areas where protozoans are concentrated and direct students to collect samples from those areas.

We used Protoslo®, but now the protozoans are all at the edge of the coverslip and some have even been squeezed out completely from under the coverslip. What can I do?

If the Protoslo® and culture water are not thoroughly mixed, the thicker Protoslo® will displace the water and protozoans when the coverslip is added. If this occurred, clean the slide and start over, being sure to thoroughly mix the Protoslo® and culture water before adding the coverslip to the slide.


We hope not, but if so, contact us. We want you to have a good experience.

Orders and replacements: 800.334.5551, then select Customer Service.

Technical support and questions:

Care guide

Salmonella precautions

Always wash your hands after touching an amphibian or any part of an amphibian’s habitat. For more information, see our “Amphibians, Reptiles, and Prevention of Salmonella Transmission” statement.

Immediate care and handling

Open the shipping container as soon as it arrives and acclimate the tadpoles to holding pails or habitats immediately.

Allow 50 to 60 minutes for acclimation. Have a habitat or holding pail made of glass, plastic, or stainless steel prepared with room-temperature water before proceeding. Use spring water, pond water, or dechlorinated tap water only. Spring water is available from Carolina (item #132458) or your local grocery store. If you buy spring water at the store, read the label carefully to be sure it contains no additives. If you use tap water, you must treat it first with a chemical water conditioner (such as item #971160, #672291, or #672292) to remove chlorine and chloramines.

To acclimatize your tadpoles:

  1. Float the bag in the holding pail or set the bag next to the habitat.
  1. After 20 to 30 minutes, remove about 1/4 of the water from the bag and replace it with water from the holding pail or habitat.
  1. Wait 15 minutes and then repeat step 2.
  1. After another 15 minutes, position a net over an empty cup or bucket (not the holding pail or habitat) and gently pour the tadpoles from the bag into the net. Transfer the netted tadpoles to the holding pail or habitat and discard the shipping water and shipping bag. Your tadpoles are now acclimated to their new environment.

Habitat setup and maintenance

Shallow trays, aquariums, and large culture dishes are all suitable tadpole habitats. Keep tadpoles in glass, plastic, or stainless steel only.

Clean the habitat with hot water before use, but do not use soap or detergent. Native tadpoles generally live in shallow water, so fill the habitat to a depth of 2 to 5 cm (3/4 to 2”). Bullfrog tadpoles can have a water depth of 8 to 13 cm (3 to 5”), and Xenopus tadpoles should have a depth of 10 to 20 cm (4 to 8”). Remember to always use spring water, pond water, or tap water that has been treated with a chemical water conditioner.

Change 1/4 to 1/3 of the water 2 to 3 times a week, or more often if it becomes cloudy. Be sure that any water you add matches the temperature of the current water. We do not recommend a filter, since it may suck up the tadpoles. A small aquarium pump with an air stone or other bubbler will help keep the water oxygenated. Keep the habitat at room temperature, away from heating or cooling vents, and out of direct sunlight.

Once a week, clean and rinse all habitats and utensils in hot water, without soap or detergent. Transfer the tadpoles to a holding pail while you clean the habitat.

Tadpoles can tolerate a wide range of temperatures but not a sudden temperature change. Never transfer tadpoles to water that differs in temperature by more than 1 to 1.5° C (2 to 3° F).

For maximum growth, put no more than 30 small tadpoles in every 4 L (1 gal) of water. As the tadpoles grow, decrease the population density by setting up more habitats and dividing the tadpoles among them.

Care and feeding

Most native tadpoles are vegetarian and live on a variety of plant materials. You can add aquatic plants such as Elodea (item #162101) to the habitat for decoration and as a food source. Provide enough light for the plants to carry out photosynthesis, but always avoid placing the habitat in direct sunlight.

Our Tadpole Food (item #146500) is an excellent food source for native tadpoles. Other options include pelleted rabbit food, fish food, and algae supplemented with finely powdered beef liver or powdered egg yolk. Parboiled lettuce and spinach are also suitable, but you should supplement them with other foods; tadpoles fed exclusively on lettuce or spinach may develop tumors. Xenopus tadpoles are filter feeders and will eat our Xenopus Tadpole Food (item #146501), nettle powder, or pea soup.

Do not feed more than the tadpoles can consume in a few hours. If your tadpoles are newly hatched from eggs, wait to begin feeding them until they are actively swimming. For 2 to 3 young tadpoles, a small pinch of food every other day is a good starting point. The amount you feed will depend on the size and number of your tadpoles, so it may require some trial and error. Increase the amount of food you provide as the tadpoles grow.

Remove any uneaten food from the habitat a few hours after every feeding. You may find that a pipette, turkey baster, or aquarium siphon makes it easier to remove the uneaten food, but be careful not to siphon up or injure the tadpoles.

After the front limbs appear, tadpoles may stop eating. This is because they are literally digesting their tails and need no additional food. Tadpoles also develop lungs at about the same time as their front limbs, and they will need a way to reach the air to breathe. Add a flat rock or other object to the habitat once the tadpole has hind limbs, so that it will be able to climb out as it matures. (Xenopus are completely aquatic, so they don’t need a way out of the water.) Frogs can climb on almost any surface, but toads need a surface that provides traction. Spring peepers are excellent climbers and will escape from any container that does not have a lid.

Frog habitat

Once frogs or toads are crawling out of the water with their tails mostly gone, move them to a terrarium. (Xenopus are completely aquatic; keep them in an aquarium as you would goldfish.) The terrarium should have a sand substrate and a source of water.

For frogs, put about 5 cm (2”) of clean sand in the bottom of the terrarium and bulldoze it to one end to create a land side and a water side. The depth of water depends on the size of the frogs, but it should be a few centimeters at most. Toads are terrestrial and can drown if they are trapped in water, so cover the bottom of their terrarium with clean sand and place a shallow dish of water on top. Keep the terrarium at room temperature and away from direct sunlight.

Native frogs and toads need live insects to eat. Start by offering them fruit flies, then add small cricket nymphs as the frogs grow. Larger frogs and toads can be fed redworms (small whole worms or chopped pieces), waxworms, mealworms, and crickets. Feed frogs and toads 2 to 3 times a week. Once or twice a week, dust the insects with a commercial vitamin/mineral supplement prior to feeding.

Xenopus frogs do not need live food. You can feed them pelleted food such as HBH Frog & Tadpole Bites (item #146503).

For additional information, see our Carolina™ Reptiles and Amphibians: Care and Culture manual as well as our individual Small Toad Carolina™ CareSheet, Tree Frogs Carolina™ CareSheet, and Xenopus Carolina™ CareSheet.


How do I know if I have Xenopus tadpoles?

Unless you raised Xenopus tadpoles from the egg stage, you probably have tadpoles of a native frog or toad. Native tadpoles are heavily pigmented. Xenopus tadpoles, especially in early stages, are nearly transparent.

What species of tadpole does Carolina have?

We ship a variety of species depending on seasonal availability. In general, spring peeper tadpoles are available in the early spring, followed by toads and then grass frogs. In the winter we may send lab-reared grass frog tadpoles. Refer to any information that came with your order for the exact species you received.

Our tadpoles are now frogs. Can we release them into a pond?

No. A frog may be native to North America, but it may not be native to your area. Do not release Xenopus into the environment because it is not native and could damage native amphibian populations. Your state Department of Natural Resources or Department of Wildlife can advise you on relevant laws, guidelines, and regulations.

Our tadpoles are dying. What can we do?

Rushing the acclimation procedure can kill the tadpoles. Also, soap and detergent can leave a toxic residue.

You can try switching to a different water source. Tap water can have toxic metal ions, spring water from a grocery store might contain trace contaminants, and locally collected spring or pond water might contain a pollutant.

When performing water changes, be sure that the new water is the same temperature as the old water. It is also less stressful for tadpoles if you change small amounts of water more frequently, rather than changing a large amount of water all at once.

Unfortunately, the death rate of native frog tadpoles is often extremely high, even if you do everything right.

How long before the tadpoles become frogs?

Spring peeper and toad tadpoles transform into small adults in 6 to 8 weeks. Other species, including Xenopus, take from 10 to 14 weeks. Bullfrog tadpoles may take from 4 to 18 months to metamorphose.


We hope not, but if so, contact us. We want you to have a good experience.

Orders and replacements: 800.334.5551, then select Customer Service.

Technical support and questions:

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