Defining Characteristics: Great beginner frog | Bright blue coloration | Bold | Easy to breed | Quiet call | Large | Can be kept in groups when young | Best kept in pairs as adults
Name: Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus'. Formerly known as Dendrobates azureus until genetic testing proved D. azureus was another population of Dendrobates tinctorius. Commonly called the Sky Blue Poison Dart Frog, Blue Poison Arrow Frog, or the Dyeing Poison Dart Frog (based on an early belief that natives used brightly colored frogs to dye fabric).
Recommended Vivarium Size: A 10 gallon aquarium is suitable for a single Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus', 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.
Temperature: Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' can tolerate a temperature range of 65 F to 80 F, but prefer temperatures in the low to mid 70s. Temperatures over 85F are dangerous.
Humidity: Like most poison dart frogs, Azureus 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 Azureus are larger, measuring in at approximately 2 inches. Male Azureus are a bit smaller, averaging about 1.5 inches at maturity. All of the Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' froglets Josh's Frogs sells are well started juveniles, and measure approximately 1” long.
Age: Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' is capable of living well over 20 years in captivity under ideal conditions, although a lifespan of 10 years is more common. In the wild, it is thought that Azureus may live 4-6 years. All Azureus for sale at Josh's Frogs are well started juveniles, and are 2-3 months old.
Feeding: Like most poison dart frogs, Azureus prefer smaller foods. All of the azureus Josh's Frogs sells will readily eat Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies. Adult Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' 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 tinctorius 'Azureus' is not sexable until 10-12 months of age. Male Azureus tend to be smaller than females, which often appear both longer and wider. Males also tend to have wider front toe pads and a less defined back arch than females. 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 tinctorius 'Azureus' are mostly blue in color with a varying degree of black spots. The blue can range from a very dark, deep blue to a light sky blue in some individuals. Spots can be large in some individual Azureus, but generally are less than 1cm across. 'Fine Spot' or 'Small Spot' lines of Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' have been created by line breeding. 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: Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' do well housed in groups up to sexual maturity, 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 tinctorius may change, and all but one female may need to be removed. Female D. tinctorius may fight with each other over a mate. For that reason, many breeders recommend keeping Azureus in pairs as adults. Josh's Frogs strongly recommends against housing different species/morphs of dart frogs - for the health of your pets, please avoid mxing! Josh's Frogs recommends purchasing multiple frogs if you are interested in breeding them – this greatly increases the chances of getting a pair.
Breeding: Azureus are very simple and easy to breed. Like most Dendrobates tinctorius, Azureus are best bred in pairs as adult females may fight with each other in the presence of a male. 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 tinctorius 'Azureus' is native to a very limited range in the Sipaliwini Savanna, located in southern Suriname. This large grassland is punctuated by 'forest islands', isolated pockets of jungle that occur along streams, where Azureus are found. It is estimated that the population of Azureus in the pet trade is several times larger than the wild population at any point in history.
History in the Hobby: Discovered in 1968, Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' were imported for the first time in 1970. Most Azureus descend from imports in the 1980s and early 1990s. Many lines exist in the hobby, generally reflecting individual imports from Suriname or Europe. All Azureus in the pet trade descend from one population in the wild, and can safely be bred together. Josh's Frogs works with several lines of Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus', and pairs different lines with each other to maintain genetic variability in the frogs we sell.
Links of Interest:
A brief description of the discovery of Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus'.
Basic Information on Azureus.
Tinctorius Morphguide, with great information on all morphs of Dendrobates tinctorius.
IUCN Redlist article on Dendrobates tinctorius.
Taxonomy of Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' on the American Museum of Natural History website.
Still not sure if Dendrobates tinctorius 'Azureus' from Josh's Frogs are the right poison dart frog for you? Read the reviews below and see what other customers are saying!