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Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves? Should I be concerned?

Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves

African dwarf frogs are fascinating creatures in aquatic life. They are one of the laziest reptiles. However, many owners of these aquatic species report they find them hiding or burrowing themselves.

Now, let’s know about” Do my African dwarf frogs bury themselves?’’ Yes, they do it for their survival. Shy and little African dwarf frogs hide for survival, and docility takes time to adapt. Thus, they adapt to new situations  & avoid danger. But, prolonged hiding may cause underlying issues.

Throughout the article, we will give you overall ideas of why they bury themselves. Lastly, we will discuss how to deal with that situation. So, keep reading.

Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves? 

Yes, they bury or hide themselves. However, African dwarf frogs don’t technically bury themselves, but they prefer to seek shelter underneath the mud or alternative secret spots.

Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves

They are mostly active at night and sleep on days. During the day, your frogs may feel less energetic in harsh daytime conditions. Thus, they not only secure themselves from potential risk but also they can engage themselves in hunting during nighttime. Overall, it is a clever adoption of tiny African frogs.

Where Do They Bury Themselves?

Generally, African Dwarfs Frogs bury or hide in plants, rocks, submerged logs, underwater caves, or stones. If you keep them in an aquarium, they will hide themselves in decorations, filters,  ornaments, and specialized caverns.

Why Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves?

These species love to live in darker places. Mostly, they are natural reasons, and there might be other reasons behind them. You know everything you need to know.

Why Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves

Protection & Safety:

Mostly, they may bury themselves to avoid potential predators or hazards. Buried frogs are less apparent and thus less likely to attract predators. When you add new fish in the tank, they get worried & bury themselves in the fish tank filter.

Additionally, in their natural environment, African dwarf frogs hide from birds, snakes, and bigger fish that might try to eat them. When you keep them as pets, it can be hard to figure out what scares them. The reasons could be you, other pets, household things, or even family members.

New Environment: 

Your African dwarf frogs may feel scared in their new environment and choose to hide behind the filter. If you give them time, they will adapt to the environment. Sometimes, they feel other fish might eat them, so they prefer to hide.

African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves

Temperature Regulation:

Burrowing in a tank filter helps regulate their body temperature. That’s how your African frogs try to find cooler or warmer areas in the substrate to maintain their preferred temperature range.


Nevertheless, your frog can hide itself due to loneliness because they hide themselves. So, they hide in the filter and feel that they are hugging themselves. So, it is time to give your frogs some friends as they are so social.


Sometimes, frogs bury themselves simply to rest or conserve energy. It provides a secure and comfortable spot to take a break. In this way, they become stress-free frogs. Even your African frogs may not like too much light. That’s another reason to bury themselves.

Unclean Tank:

Because your African frogs are sensitive to water quality, It leave the tank when it gets dirty. When you find it near the filter, it means there are problems with the water. So, with quick results, they can be healthy, frequent testing, filtration maintenance, and water changes. 

Death of Frogs:

Sometimes, you see your frog floating near the filter in the water. You may think they are hiding. But there are times when dead frogs end up behind the filter and times when they float to the top. You must take care of these during prolonged hiding.

What Should I Do if My African Dwarf Frog is Frequently Burying Themselves? 

If you see that your African dwarf frog is burrowing itself a lot, it is essential that you take these preventive steps to guarantee their health:

What Should I Do if My African Dwarf Frog is Frequently Burying Themselves

1. Water Quality Check:

Water quality can stress your African dwarf frogs, which might lead to health issues. So, you should regularly check the PH, light, temperature nitrate & ammonia and maintain recommended ranges. Septicemia may be caused by unclean tank water.

2. Hiding Spot:

To comfort dwarf frogs, you should provide tank hiding spots. For example, aquatic flora, ornaments, and specialized caverns. Hidden areas replicate their natural habitat and make them feel safe while hiding or burrowing.

3. Tank Size:

For ensuring optimal living conditions, you can make sure that the size of the tank corresponds appropriately with the quantity of frogs you have. Sometimes, frogs may become stressed and aggressive as a result of overcrowding, which may cause them to bury more frequently.

1-2 frogs can live in a five-gallon fish tank. The tank’s optimum temperature should be 20 degrees Celsius to 28 degrees Celsius. The  PH  of water should be between 7 and 7.8. 

Enjoy watching happy frogs in the tank. 

4. Feeding:

You must provide them with proper nutrition. However, Overfeeding can lead to abnormal behavior like frequent hiding.

5. Observation:

You should keep an eye on your own pet dwarf frogs. Burrowing themselves can be a reason for loneliness, illness, and stress. If you notice an unusual frequency of hiding, then consult with a vet. 

Those factors are necessary for the proper healthy hiding of African dwarf frogs while keeping them safe and proper habitation.


Here, I am answering some frequently spoken questions. So, keep reading.

Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves Differently in Different Substrates?

Yes, they can easily bury themselves in sand and smooth gravel, which allows them to dig and burrow. In contrast, coarse substrates make them more challenging.

How Long Do African Dwarf Frogs Hide?

African dwarf frogs can sleep up to 10 hours a day, depending on their fear of predators. Hiding of your frogs depends on their age, activeness, environment adoption, behavior of predators, illness & unclean tanks. Old frogs are not that active.

Can They Change Their Hiding Behavior as They Are Getting Old?

Yes, you are thinking right. As with time, they can adapt to the environment. They feel more confident moving around. On the other hand, juvenile frogs are more active and spend less time hiding. Your adult frogs will hide more often.

Do African Dwarf Frogs Come Out of Hiding During Feeding Time?

When your frogs will feel comfortable, they will come out for feed. However, some are more inclined to feed while partially hidden.

Do African Dwarf Frogs Sleep Underwater?

Yes, they do sleep underwater, and they have this adaptability. The reason behind this is there is no fear of predators underwater. Thus, they can sleep there more peacefully.


So, “Do African Dwarf Frogs Bury Themselves?” We cover that African Dwarf Frogs frequently shelter under the water filter throughout the day. You should regularly check the water quality to keep them strong, as African dwarf frogs are sensitive to pollution.

Thus, their presence under the filter suggests your frogs prefer cleaner water. Hence, you should maintain their surroundings, which keep them healthy, and African dwarf frogs feel safe and secure. You should give them time to adapt to the new environment. Nevertheless, it is not a matter of concern as it is quite normal.

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