Insects are an important component of your frog’s diet. When it comes to bees and wasps, frogs can eat them regularly. Throughout this guide, we’ll explain:
- Do Frogs Eat Bees and Wasps?
- Are Frogs Immune to Bee Stings?
- How Do Frogs Catch Bees and Wasps?
- What Type Of Frogs Eat Bees?
- What Type of Bees do Frogs Eat?
Do Frogs Eat Bees and Wasps?
Frogs like to eat bees and wasps because of their ease of access and low defenses. They will eat more bees when there are over 40 hives in the area or when the food is scarce. Frogs will wait at the hive entrances and wait for bees in night weather.
Overall, a frog will eat a bee or wasps when it’s in their proximity. Frogs prey on animals that constantly move, making the bees an easy target for them.
Frogs are opportunists, meaning that they will eat any animal that’s of a reasonable size. The urge to eat small bees and wasps is so strong that they will have issues not doing it even if the food isn’t tasty to them.
Are Frogs Immune to Bee Stings?
Frogs are not immune to bee stings. When attacking a bee, there are times when a bee will sting the frog’s skin. However, the frog is resilient, and there are times when a frog can eat bees without being stung. In the event that it is stung, it’s not enough to stop the frog from attacking them again.
If you notice your frog becoming stung by a bee, check to see its reaction. If your frog appears weakened by the sting, try to get them to a vet to nurse them back to good health.
How Do Frogs Catch Bees and Wasps
First, frogs use their eyes to track and search for wasps that are nearby. Frogs have a larger field of view than humans because their eyes can rotate 360 degrees. Since frogs cannot move their head, their eyes do all of the search and reconnaissance for them.
Frogs use their eyes to capture their prey. After a frog has a bee in its tongue, its eyeballs will retract inside its head. The frog will push the food down its stomach and eat it slowly.
While frogs have teeth like humans, they use their teeth to keep their prey in their mouth and not chew. The frog’s tongue is located in the front of its mouth. That’s why it’s difficult for frogs to swallow their prey without assistance from their eyes.
The tongue is the frog’s most effective weapon against bees and wasps. Bees can fly around frogs and attempt to sting them, but their efforts are rendered useless once they are in the frog’s tongue.
The frog has a tongue that uses extractor and retractor muscles to capture its prey. The extractor muscles are used to propel their tongue at bees faster than the blink of an eye (approximately 0.07 seconds).
Before attacking wasps, the frog’s tongue produces mucus to attach it to them. Once the mucus is made, the frog will extend its tongue to attack the bee.
The frog’s tongue is too powerful for the wasp to escape. In fact, the frog’s tongue strike forces the wasp to stay in their mouths until the frog fully digests them.
Frogs have saliva that’s thick like honey. When the tongue impacts an insect, the saliva turns into a liquid form. The saliva penetrates through the nooks and intricate areas of the wasp’s body. The saliva thickens again, making it easier for the frog to pull it into its mouth.
What Type Of Frogs Eat Bees?
Bullfrogs are known for their gray-brown or green skin with spots. Since they are nocturnal predators, bullfrogs tend to eat birds, snakes, mice, fish, and insects.
When hunting, they wait quietly for their prey to arrive and lunge towards them with their hind legs. Once their tongue is fully extended, the frog will be able to consume bees within seconds.
- Tree Frogs
Tree frogs are a diverse range of frogs that spans across 800 species. Adult tree frogs are approximately 2-4 inches tall. These frogs have the ability to attach to trees because of their well-developed discs located in their toe tips and fingers.
Tree frogs can catch bees easily. They do this by latching onto a tree and waiting for a bee or wasp to fly nearby them. After the frog captures the bumblebee, the bee is in the frog’s mouth and is fully eaten.
- Green Frogs
Green frogs are large and have dorsolateral ridges and a distinct tympanum. The maximum adult size is 30 cm, making them a large predator to bees and wasps. Since green frogs are carnivores, they will use their tongue to attack and kill their prey.
What Type of Bees do Frogs Eat?
Here are the most common types of bees:
Bumblebees are easy prey for frogs. They fly with over 130 beats per second. Their size allows them to generate heat from their bodies. At night, bumblebees fly to higher altitudes than honey bees.
In the wild, bumblebees pollinate plants to improve our ecosystem. Bumblebees are social insects as they live in hives that give them a place to raise their offspring and shelter. On average, bumblebee hives can have up to 50-500 inhabitants.
Frogs like bumblebees because of their movement and protein content. If you have a few bumblebees in a container, you can feed up to 5-10 bumblebees to an adult frog. This will give them the nutrients needed to ensure that they grow and maintain their weight.
- Carpenter Bee
Carpenter bees look similar to bumblebees but have a bareback, while bumblebees have hairy backs. They reproduce by drilling into wood and laying their eggs. Carpenter bees cut holes that are round and 1/4th in diameter. Thus, giving them the name “carpenter” due to their ability to cut through wood throughout their lives.
Still, they are no match for the tongue of a frog. Carpenter bees reach a maximum height of 1/4th to 1 inch tall. Meanwhile, the average adult frog ranges from 2-6 inches. Since the frog is taller, it’s easy for them to dominate the bee and eat them.
- Mason Bees
Mason bees are small bees that have the speed of a tiny fighter jet. They have pollen hairs located underneath their abdomens. Mason bees are the most active in the spring and have a habit of using mud to create nest cavities.
In the wild, mason bees lay the female egg in the back of the nest. After that, the mother bee will lay the male eggs. She will gather nectar to make enzymes that feed their offspring. Then, she’ll use a mud seal to create a nest. During the spring, the male mason bees are ready to mate with the female bees once they leave their nest.
Frogs eat mason bees with the help of their fast tongues and agility. Even though they cannot rotate their heads, they can eat mason bees without hesitation.
Your pet frog can eat bees and wasps. When feeding them to your frog, make sure that you give them a reasonable amount. That way, your frog can have a consistent source of protein while maintaining its health in the long term.